As technology rapidly advances, healthcare providers are increasingly in need of phone, texting, and fax services that are user-friendly for patients and providers, HIPAA-secure, and under the control of the provider for security reasons. Recently, Ray Barrett interviewed Pankaj Gupta, founder of IPlum, on the topic of meeting technology needs in the healthcare community. 

Clinicians often wonder, “How can I provide therapy to active-duty military members and veterans?” There is an immense need for comprehensive mental health services among this population and the growing field of telehealth has allowed clinicians more access than ever before to provide services to military personnel, veterans, and their families.

Recently, Ray Barrett sat down for an interview with Dr. Mark Stebnicki, a mental health counselor and instructor for the Clinical Military Counseling Certificate Program, and Randy Phelps, CEO of Give An Hour- a nonprofit organization that provides comprehensive, no-cost mental health services to veterans.

HIPAA and TeleMental Health: Get Compliant!

Is your telemental health practice HIPAA compliant? It’s a question that can cause a knot in the stomach of even the most experienced telemental health professionals. For those just starting out in telehealth, it may even cause a bout of panic. Exactly how does HIPAA impact counselors who are using telehealth? Are the rules different than the rules for in-person therapy?

Even if you’ve taken a continuing education class covering HIPAA, it may not have covered telemental health and you may have questions. 

Let’s start with some basics: 

 

How to Increase Diversity and Equity in Mental Health? Be Curious. Be Brave.

People of color need counseling. And they want it. But there are barriers, including barriers unwittingly put up by counselors. 

“Communities of color are not always aware of the benefits of counseling,” said Dr. Kim Lee Hughes, President of the Association for Multicultural Counseling and Development (AMCD). AMCD’s mission includes recognizing diversity in our society and enhancing the development, human rights, and the psychological health of ethnic/racial populations and all people.

Hughes adds that in some communities of color, individuals may not be aware of how to find a counselor or how to use their insurance.

 

Maybe you tried telehealth for your counseling practice during the COVID-19 shutdown, and you’ve decided you would like to stick with it. Or maybe you’ve always wanted to go all-in on telehealth but weren’t sure you could get enough clients to sustain your business.

The good news is that many counselors are successfully carrying a full caseload of telehealth clients.

How do they do it? And how long does it take to get a full caseload if you only see clients via telehealth?

 

Many clinicians are quite adept at using technology, yet the competencies that are required when providing telehealth services are not so evident. Raymond Barrett created this recorded course as an overview of all topics regarding telemental health.  It is not meant to address all of the areas of telehealth, but instead is offered so that you can assess your own level of competency and provide clinicians with the "broad strokes" of the competencies of telehealth. Topics addressed include: why telemental health is an important option for clients, the benefits (and drawbacks) of telemental health, how US licensure law impacts telemental health, telemental health-specific ethical standards, and preparing clients for a session.

We are pleased to offer this one-hour video for FREE to anyone by clicking the "Play" option on the video above.

In addition to the video training, if you would like to earn 1 CE credit, you can do that by enrolling in the one-hour self-study course for $20

Telehealth Hit its Stride as COVID-19 Raged

Telehealth sprinted from being an underutilized way to deliver healthcare to being a widely used essential service when the COVID-19 hit the U.S. in early 2020. Now that vaccines are available and many pandemic restrictions are being lifted - a big push is underway to keep the expanded telehealth services from slowing to a crawl.

According to an article in Kaiser Health News, doctors and patients like the service - especially behavioral health patients. 

A survey cited by NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness), found that 80% of people using community behavioral health services said telehealth was as good or better than the in-person services they used before the pandemic.

I Graduated Already, Why Do I Have to Take Continuing Education Classes?

You completed your undergraduate program, then your master’s degree. You might even have completed a Ph.D. program. You took a licensure exam. You worked under supervision for a year or two. Finally, you were fully licensed. 

But you’re not done with your education just yet. In fact, you likely won’t ever be done - not as long as you want to keep practicing in your profession.

Counselors, social workers, psychologists, and psychiatrists - in fact, most healthcare professionals - typically are required to take continuing education classes throughout their careers to maintain licensure. 

You can check your state’s CE requirements here. 

Each state has licensure laws that set minimum continuing education requirements. Why?

Recently, Ray Barrett sat down to interview Laura Groshong about the field of social work and the direction in which the field is headed. Laura is a licensed clinical social worker and has been in clinical practice for the past 43 years. She was a registered lobbyist in Washington for five mental health organizations for 25 years. She has been the director of policy and practice for the Clinical Social Work Association nationally since 2006. Laura’s diverse range of experiences allows her to bring a wealth of knowledge to the field. Her passion for social work developed while she was working in the foster care system. She fell in love with the field but decided to pursue the mental health route. 

 

Recently, Ray Barrett sat down to interview Sam Johnson, LPC, IFS, and EMDR therapist, to discuss providing Internal Family Systems (IFS) therapy online. Prior to the pandemic, Sam was providing telehealth to clients. As a provider living in a rural area, Sam began offering telehealth early to meet the needs of clients living at a distance.

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