In this blog, we'll take a look at several telemedicine benefits for mental health. Because let's face it, going to see medical professionals can be a problem for numerous people because of various reasons.
After reading this blog, you'll see how telemedicine can be a total gamechanger as a patient. It's something that can help many who otherwise would not seek treatment and others who wouldn't be able to get treatment because of their circumstances.
Let's dive right in.
What is telemedicine exactly? Does telemedicine mean people just call their counselors and medical professionals and have a chat by phone?
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines telemedicine as "the practice of medicine when the doctor and patient are widely separated using two-way voice and visual communication (as by satellite or computer)."
As telemedicine relates to mental health counseling, it's also called telepsychiatry, a subset of telemedicine. With telepsychiatry, patients and counselors can communicate through live interactive sessions.
From home, connecting with your mental health counselor at their office via a HIPAA compliant platform like Clocktree would be an excellent example of telemedicine. With telemedicine, counselors can meet individually with a single patient, conduct sessions for group therapy, and meet with children, and others.
Now, let's take a look at several of the benefits of telemedicine and how it's helping patients get access to their mental healthcare services.
1. It Saves Time
Telemedicine saves time. Many patients have to leave work early and travel miles for their counseling sessions. However, with something like telemedicine, time can instantly be saved. People can conduct a counseling session right from their location, cutting out the problem of travel time.
2. It Saves Money
For many, when it comes to getting to a counseling session or doctor's appointment, they might have to travel. This can mean having to pay for the cost of fuel.
However, other than the costs of fuel, many people might also have to pay for childcare. And having to pay for gasoline and childcare regularly can quickly add up. With telemedicine, these issues can be taken care of with ease.
3. Telemedicine Allows Patients to Connect in Times When They Normally Couldn't
Another considerable benefit of telemedicine is that it allows patients to connect with therapists during times when they usually couldn't.
For example, maybe a patient has a crisis while out of town and needs to connect with their counselor. With emergent situations like this, many people can efficiently connect with their counselors through a telemedicine session.
Other times counseling by telemedicine might make sense is when a patient is physically ill, out of town for work, or unable to travel because of something like the COVID-19 quarantine.
4. Telemedicine and Privacy
With telemedicine, patients can be at ease about the privacy of their counseling sessions and mental health treatment. Because of telemedicine, many patients who otherwise wouldn't seek out counseling out of fear of being stigmatized can now get the help they need right from home. This is a huge deal for many patients.
Telemedicine is transforming the way that patients and healthcare professionals interact. It's making care more accessible for patients. And when it comes to mental health, it can be a gamechanger.
As this blog has shown, counseling through telemedicine (telepsychiatry) can save time and save money for many patients. Additionally, telemedicine provides a way for patients to connect with their counselors when they otherwise couldn't.
And finally, interactive counseling through telemedicine ensures patient privacy. In other words, patients don't have to worry about the judgment of others as it relates to their counseling sessions.
If you are looking to book a telemedicine therapy session with Megan Logan, MSW, LCSW, book a counseling appointment today or contact us with questions. We'd love to connect with you and get you started with a counseling plan that fits you and your schedule.