Our psychologists have undergone extensive training in order to help individuals effectively manage stress, anxiety, panic, grief and other psychological concerns. Whether this is face-to-face, online, or over the phone, it is extremely important to seek professional help if you are experiencing psychological distress.
How do Telehealth (online) consultations work?
At Western Plains Psychology we use a video-conferencing platform called Zoom. Once an appointment has been arranged with your psychologist, we share a link with you via email. Once you have clicked on this link, your video session will automatically launch.
What (if any) devices do I need in order to access Telehealth (online) services?
You will need a device (computer or smartphone) with internet connection in order for the link to work. You may want to consider a quiet location in your home (or car) to secure your own privacy during these sessions.
Do I need to download Zoom on my device to access my online session?
You are not required to download any software in order for the link to work.
What happens if I click the link before my appointment has been scheduled?
Your Telehealth session will be scheduled for a specific time, so there may be restrictions on accessing your session before this. You can test this if you like (no dire consequences if you do). The link will expire at the conclusion of your appointment.
Do I need an email address?
Yes, you will need an active email account in order for us to share the link with you.
Is my session recorded?
No. We comply with Privacy laws and treat client confidentiality with utmost importance. To read about our confidentiality agreement.
Can I see both my own and my psychologists face during the session?
The platform, Zoom allows you to see both your own and your psychologist’s face. Your psychologist’s face will be in the centre of the screen while he/she is talking; and your face may appear in a separate smaller window to the left or right of your screen. To avoid seeing your own face (if this is uncomfortable for you), a small ‘X’ will appear in the corner of the window within which your videocam appears. This will hide the view of your face on your screen but not the psychologists screen.
If you feel uncomfortable with videoconferencing, phone consultations are available as an alternative.
Talking to my psychologist through my computer or phone seems strange and impersonal. What feedback do you have about this?
Research has indicated that therapeutic interactions where the client and psychologist are physically present in the same room or space have no significant advantage over other face-to-face interactions such as video-conferencing (ie via platforms such as Zoom, Skype, or FaceTime). So long as the practitioner and the client can directly observe one another’s face, the therapeutic benefits of Telehealth (online) services are much the same as with physical presence.
Having said this, we do understand that it can be a strange experience the first few times you engage in online therapy. Here are some tips to help ease any discomfort you may experience before, during, or after your Telehealth experience.
Find a comfortable, quiet space within your home. Make sure this is private and away from distractions or other loud noises. Some recommendation from psychologists is to conduct the session in your car using your phone or other device.
Find a pair of headphones to use throughout your session. This will increase privacy measures.
If you wish to hide your face from your own view, please click the ‘X’ in the top right corner of your videocam view (the window that shows your face only). Some clients may find the view of their face distracting or uncomfortable.
Utilise the chat function to share links or resources with your practitioner. This is a major advantage of online therapy. If you would like to share homework (therapeutic), questionnaire/assessment results, or other relevant documentation, you can do this easily by sharing a link or PDF document with your practitioner.