E-therapy is mental health counseling done in an online format like video conferencing and chat.
E-therapy can be used by anyone. It is particularly good for people who need remote access or who have a physical or psychological limitation that makes it difficult to get out and about. E-therapy can be more convenient if you are facing time limitations. It also can make therapy a little bit more affordable. When I engage in e-therapy, I do it from a home office, which reduces the cost for me, and therefore those who I am providing the service to.
E-therapy does have some draw backs. Insurances do not pay for it, for one. E-therapy formats can sometimes make it harder to feel connected with your therapist as some aspects of communication are lost, like body language. The intimacy of in-person interactions can be lost. E-therapy is not for people with a more serious psychiatric illness that requires close monitoring. Lastly, the security of e-therapy can be trickier. Mental health services fall under the same strict confidentiality laws (HIPAA) as medical services. E-therapy faces the same threat that any personal information online faces.
Even though there are these drawbacks, the most important part is that it's still therapy. That means it has all the benefits that traditional therapy has, too; the barriers are just something to be aware of. If e-therapy seems like a good idea, there is no harm in trying it.
How does Talk Therapy do e-therapy?
To increase the security of e-therapy, I use a website called Secure Video. This website provides HIPAA-compliant video conferencing and chat. Those who chose to engage in e-therapy will have to download their app, and then the session is done using that app. A user must have a camera and mic on their device, and though it can be done on a cell phone, it is better done on larger devices. Most sessions are done via the secure video conferencing. At times, there have been connection problems and then the session continues on chat or phone.
I am licensed in Washington and Utah. You must be a resident of one of these states to do e-therapy with me.