At the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, 100% of our counselling sessions were conducted online. Now that restrictions have eased, some clients have returned to face-to-face sessions, while others have preferred to stay on with video or telephone counselling.
We’ve found some clients are even more engaged using telehealth versus face-to-face. For some, this is because they can find time in their schedule sooner to book an appointment, allowing them to address an issue closer to the time it impacted them. For others, they are more comfortable speaking with a clinician via video from the comfort of their own home.
Telehealth removes a number of the common barriers to accessing counselling: travel time, the unfamiliar setting of a consulting room, and particularly for those living in regional areas, the availability of clinicians close by.
We surveyed clients’ comfort levels with telehealth/video counselling through COVID and 98% of respondents said they were comfortable using this option. Indeed, a number of studies have found that telehealth can be as effective as face-to-face treatment, particularly for anxiety, stress and depression.
Of course, telephone and video counselling isn’t for everyone. Those who don’t feel confident using computers or other digital technology, or who are concerned about their internet connection, may prefer face-to-face sessions. People who have multiple or complex mental health needs may also prefer in-person counselling. Others may simply want to avoid more screen time.
For the best of both worlds, telephone and video counselling can also work well in combination with face-to-face sessions.
Caraniche at Work is now also offering training programs online. Download our latest training brochure here.