Internet-based Therapy and Telepsychology Guidelines
In this time of quarantine around the world, many mental health professionals are finding themselves facing the need to offer services online. Here are a few guidelines for psychology, social work, and counseling that provide some direction.
The American Psychological Association (APA) and the Canadian Psychological Association (CPA) have provided the following guidelines for the practice of psychology:
- American Psychological Association: Guidelines for the Practice of Telepsychology
- Association of Canadian Psychology Regulatory Organizations: Model Standards for Telepsychology Service Delivery
- Canadian Psychological Association: Providing Psychological Services via Electronic Media
- Association of Psychology Postdoctoral and Internship Centers: Guidelines for the Practice of Telepsychology
Social Work Guidance
The Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) and the National Association of Social Workers (NASW), Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), and the Clinical Social Work Association (CSWA) have provided the following guidance:
- Association of Social Work Boards: Standards for Technology and Social Work Practice
- National Association of Social Workers, Association of Social Work Boards, Council on Social Work Education, Clinical Social Work Association: NASW, ASWB, CSWE, & CSWA Standards for Technology in Social Work Practice
The National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC) have provided the following guidelines:
- National Board for Certified Counselors & Center for Credentialing and Education, Inc.: Policy Regarding The Provision of Distance Professional Services
Training in Digital Therapy
For training on Foundations in Digital Therapy, check out this self-paced, online, professional training program by Drs. Barr Taylor, Alina Kurland, Shiri Sadeh-Sharvit, Josef Ruzek, Elsa Rojas-Ashe, and Joseph Bankman, at the Center for m²Health at Palo Alto University.
Technology has become an inherent part of modern psychological treatments. This course provides an overview of the use of digital tools and technology in therapy, including a discussion of the evidence base for integrated (“blended”) face-to face and technology-facilitated therapy, a review of different types of tools available for clinicians, and a discussion of ethical and other concerns about providing and using digital therapies. The course also includes information on the relevance of social media to clinical practice as well as empirically-supported strategies that can help engage clients in the use of digital therapy tools. Clinicians will also learn to identify the best tools to use for their particular clinical need and to introduce strategies for addressing client disengagement or non-adherence. Finally, the course includes discussions of relevant ethical and legal concerns. The aim of this course is to prepare clinicians to successfully integrate digital tools in their own clinical practice and, if desired, to seek additional, more specialized training in the use of digital tools.