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Online telehealth sessions during COVID-19

Posted by admin 2:33 am, 8 April 2020

We are limiting risk of COVID-19 exposure for clients and the Mindright team by going online where possible. Some in person consultations will continue depending on the client’s situation and their clinician. You can clarify these details by contacting the practice by email or phone.

Research provides strong support for online therapy for depression, anxiety and stress (and other difficulties too) and our practice and team are now set up and prepared to deliver effective therapy online. Mindright is confident in delivering online therapy for adults, adolescents, children and couples. We can also provide telephone sessions for those who prefer.

COVID-19 is undoubtedly impacting on the well being of individuals worldwide including increased stress, depressed mood and anxiety. Psychological therapy aims to support individuals to implement effective strategies for managing mental health, including many strategies that can be used in your own home during self-isolation.

How online telehealth works

Zoom

Mindright are providing sessions mostly through Zoom, a video conferencing program with high security and privacy standards. Zoom is used in health sectors across the world with great reviews as well as in education and business generally.

Setting up a Zoom Account:

  • You don’t need to join Zoom to join a “meeting” but we recommend joining when accessing ongoing sessions
  • Go to the Zoom website: https://zoom.us/
  • On the top right of the webpage click on “Sign Up, It’s Free” and enter your details
  • Verify your profile through the confirmation email
  • Done! Have a look around the Zoom program and test out your camera and microphone.

Accessing your therapy session:

  • Your Mindright psychologist will set up a “meeting” for your session in Zoom. This meeting is password protected.
  • You will receive a Zoom web-link via email or SMS on the day of your appointment.
  • At the time of your appointment, click on the link and this will launch the Zoom program or app.
  • Your Mindright psychologist will join you there for your therapy session.

Preparing for your session

  • In addition to downloading Zoom and having the program set up, we suggest that you prepare for your session by
    • Going to the bathroom first
    • Having a cup or tea or glass of water nearby
    • Turning your phone on silent
    • Ensuring you are in a quiet and private space with little distraction.
    • Parents of adolescents and older children should ensure that privacy is provided to your children during the appointment remembering that they will do best in therapy if they can trust that their session is confidential.

Billing and Mental Health Care Plans

A Temporary Medicare Benefits Schedule has been implemented in Australia until September 2020 to provide telehealth consultations to the community self-isolating at home.

From April 6 2020, Mindright is able to apply usual billing practices for many clients receiving telehealth sessions when they have a mental health care plan in place. Previously used mental health care plans are usable and you will only need to update this plan with your GP when you are in need of a review plan. Your GP can arrange the plan through telehealth.

Please call the practice on 02) 8065 0326 or email info@mindright.com.au to arrange an appointment with your psychologist.

The government did not approve usual billing practices for concession card holders, children under 16 years and those identified most vulnerable to COVID-19. Mindright aims to support clients and the community through the COVID pandemic and will apply flexibility with billing clients on a case by case basis with a particular focus on significant financial loss/stress and vulnerability to COVID-19. Please contact the practice to discuss any concerns or queries that you have regarding this.

If you are receiving sessions via the COVID Medicare Benefits Scheme, these sessions will make up part of your total of 10 sessions for the Calendar year.

The Team and Mindright are here to support you through this COVID-19 Pandemic. Please do not hesitate to contact the practice by phone or email if you would like to discuss therapy, our online platform or anything else.