Counseling During COVID-19
May 11th: Reopening For In-Person Sessions
In case you've ever wondered, YES, we do miss our clients! The switch to telehealth has and continues to be such a blessing to allow us to continue our work through COVID, but we're also excited that our state leadership is encouraging cautious and phased reopening of businesses like ours.
Beginning May 11th, the clinic will be reopening for in-person sessions for clients who prefer this. We'll continue to sanitize the clinic twice weekly and regularly wipe down surfaces throughout each day. However, to ensure our in-person sessions are as safe as possible, we also ask that clients call the clinic when they arrive for their session (please leave a voicemail if necessary) and wait in their vehicle until they are called in. Additionally, only those involved in in-person sessions and guardians of minor clients will be allowed into the clinic. Upon entering the clinic, we'll need to take your temperature and make sure none of the COVID screening questions apply to you. Of course, for clients who are not yet comfortable coming into the clinic, telehealth will still be available from all clinicians for now. Finally, your specific clinician may have unique parameters for in-person sessions so please contact us or ask your clinician about these specifics.
We hope to (safely) see you soon! Thanks for allowing us to walk with you through this pandemic!
March 23rd: Switching to Telehealth Only for Safety
To do our part in mitigating the spread of COVID-19, we are encouraging clients to transition to telemental health counseling via a secure, HIPAA compliant online format. Online sessions can be done using your smartphone, tablet, or any device with a camera and a microphone. Limited in-person sessions will be provided on an as-needed basis so please talk with your clinician if you have any concerns regarding online sessions.
These changes will go into effect starting Monday, March 23. You will still receive the normal email appointment reminder 48 hours prior, and a text reminder 24 hours prior to your scheduled appointment, even if it is an online session. Our 48-hour cancellation policy will still be in effect for online sessions. During your online session, please make sure to use a safe, quiet, secure location and be aware of those around you. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us. We will provide the online link a few days prior to your appointment.
We want to do our best to serve you and your therapy needs during these challenging times. Thank you for your cooperation and continued support!
What communication service is used for online sessions?
CPC uses doxy.me for its telemental health communication needs. It is secure, easy to operate, and complies with all federal health information privacy laws. Understandably, it may be hard for any online communication solution to effectively keep up with the load during the pandemic. Rest assured, we've identified at least two backup services that are also HIPAA compliant. To learn more about doxy.me and how it works, watch the video below.
What is required to do online sessions?
There is no need to download software or create an account with any of the services we may utilize. There is also no minimum technology requirement. All that's needed is a web browser on a computer or other device with a camera and microphone. Before your first online session, you'll receive an e-mail with an additional consent document specific to online counseling and a link to the online waiting room for your session. To prepare for your session, it's important to find a setting with minimal distractions and where you can be alone. This is especially important for children as they're more susceptible to distraction and may not otherwise be allowed to use technology alone.
What if I don't want to do online sessions?
We understand that online sessions are not comfortable or feasible for everyone. Some may be uncomfortable with technology or feel it's too impersonal. It also may be too challenging for young clients to engage online. Whatever the concern may be, we're committed to doing all we can to make it work as we're convinced that online sessions during the pandemic is the best way to both keep our clients physically safe and continue to care for their counseling needs.
If, for some reason, online sessions simply won't work, limited in-person appointments can be approved by your clinician. We'll just need to carefully screen you as recommended by the CDC before checking you into your appointment.
How are online sessions billed?
While some insurances have reimbursed for online services for quite some time, the pandemic has necessitated federal and state-level directives for all insurances to reimburse for online sessions and many insurances have added coverage for virtual services on their own. Rest assured, we'll do everything we can to get your insurance to pay for your online sessions so your treatment isn't interrupted. For those who pay for their counseling out of pocket, online services are billed at the same rate as in-person sessions. For these rates and all of our other fee payment policies, click here.
Can I start counseling during this time?
Absolutely! Even though the circumstances are less than ideal, we'd love to get started working with you on whatever challenge you'd like help facing. If you've come to this page first, we encourage you to watch this video that briefly details how to get started in counseling with us.