COVID-19: How to continue therapy with video counseling

March 17, 2020

How to use Video Counseling with Kathleen:

What equipment do I need?

To participate in Telehealth appointments from your home, you will need one of the following devices:

  • Desktop computer with a webcam, speakers, a 2.5 GHz processor, and 4 GB of RAM OR

  • Laptop computer with built-in webcam and speakers, a 2.5 GHz processor, and 4 GB of RAM OR

  • Tablet device with built-in webcam and speakers, OR

  • Smartphone with at least iOS 10 or Android 7.0
    (Note: To use a smartphone, you must first download

     

    Telehealth by SimplePractice - available for iOS or Android in the app store.)

  • You will also need an internet connection that is at least 10mbps. For optimal re

  • sults, a reliable, high-speed internet connection with a bandwidth of at least 10 mbps will minimize connection issues and provide the best quality.

The day of the call

Using a desktop or laptop computer

If you plan to use a desktop or laptop, there is nothing to download prior to your appointment. Here are the steps to join:

  • Approximately 10 minutes before your appointment, you'll receive an email appointment reminder.

    • Note: If you have already consented to receiving text and/or email reminders, you will continue to receive them for Telehealth appointments as well. For new clients, make sure you have provided your email and or mobile phone number so that I can enable email or text reminders.

  • Click the unique link embedded in the reminder. You may have to copy and paste the link into your web browser if clicking the link does not work. Your video call screen will now open in a new tab.

  • If I have already joined the call, you will see my face on the screen. If I have not, you will see yourself, as shown below.

  • You will also see the Welcome prompt. Click Play test sound to test the your camera and microphone settings.

  • When you are ready, click Join Video Call. This will take you straight into the video call.

Using a smartphone or tablet

If you plan to use a mobile device, here are the steps to join:

  • Download Telehealth by SimplePractice (for iOS or Android) in the app store. Approximately 10 minutes before your appointment, you should receive an email appointment reminder. 

  • Open the reminder email on your device and click the unique link. This will open the Telehealth by SimplePractice app.

  • If I have already joined the call, you will see my face on the screen. If I have not, you will see yourself.

  • When you are ready, click Join Video Call. This will take you straight into the video call.

Note: There may be a slight delay for me to join the appointment if I am finishing with a previous appointment. Please be patient and I will join momentarily.

 

Tips for success

  • I recommend joining the video appointment a few minutes early to test your settings. If you are coming to counseling as a couple check to be sure you can both be seen in the camera. Adjust seating as needed.

  • If you can connect to the Internet, but are having trouble joining the video, you can use our recommended Pre-call Tool.

  • To use a smartphone to join a video chat, you must first download the Telehealth by SimplePractice app available in the app store for iOS or Android.

  • If you need to cancel or have questions about the appointment, please contact me.

 

FAQs

What should I do if I didn’t get the reminder with the link?

Contact me by text if you did not get the link so I can send it to you via email or secure messaging.  925 297-5016.

 

What is SimplePractice?

SimplePractice, LLC is my practice management software for scheduling, case management, and Telehealth, and therapy notes. SimplePractice, LLC, uses a HIPAA compliant software so your information will be securely kept.

 

What can I do to do improve the quality of the connection?

If you live in an area with slow internet, this can really affect the speed of your connection. Here are some basic steps that can improve the overall quality:

  • Use wired Ethernet instead of wifi whenever possible. Wifi will work, but you may experience a lag and interference, which can make your video and audio choppy. If you experience a lag or interference while using Wifi, we recommend moving closer to your router. However, wired internet will give you a much smoother, more consistent experience.

  • Test your internet connection speed. Google provides an easy way to test your internet connection directly from the google homepage. Simply search: internet speed test. Click the blue button that says Run Speed Test. If it is under 10mbps and you’re using wifi, try using a wired internet connection or restarting your router.

  • Close other programs. If you have several programs running in the background, closing them will almost certainly improve the quality.  Also, make sure you’re not downloading any large files.

If you are unable to connect, please contact me as soon as possible by text to see if I can help you troubleshoot or we can continue and talk by telephone.

 

How should I prepare my space for a Telehealth appointment?

  • Identify a suitable room that is quiet, private, and free of distractions.

  • For couples - check to be sure you can both be seen in the camera at the same time, adjust seating.

  • Have paper and pen available for taking notes

  • To keep background noise to a minimum, make sure to close any doors, shut windows, turn off the television, and keep loud pets in another room if possible. Consider hanging a “Do Not Disturb” sign on the door to avoid interruptions. 

Is Telehealth private?

Just like a face-to-face appointment, your Telehealth visit will be private and confidential.

 

Will the appointments be recorded?

None of our appointments will ever be recorded or stored.

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925 297-5016

3468 Mt Diablo Blvd Suite B200
Lafayette, CA 94549

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