How Remote Therapy Works: A Therapists Perspective

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Are you an independent therapist consideringusing remote therapy to expand your private practice online? Now is a greattime to make the transition. Independent therapists who are opting to provideremote therapy services can easily do so by creating their own network seriesof connected systems that often include one or more of the following componentslisted below.

Eachcomponent is described in detail and may have associated costs that independenttherapy providers have to pay to use services.

Remote Therapy Session Management

One of the easiest ways to connect with remoteclients is by using the telephone. Having telephone sessions with clients is aseasy as connecting with your client at a predetermined date and time bytelephone. In most cases, the therapist will initiate a phone call to theclient where the client and therapist will converse about past sessions,important issues, and current events in the client’s life. In order fortelephone therapy sessions to be successful distance therapists require theirclients to be in a private environment where they are unlikely to beinterrupted for the duration of their sessions.


Remote audio therapy sessions are similar toremote telephone therapy sessions. The main difference is that thecommunication medium of choice is an application via a smart device using audiosoftware instead of a telephone. Clients who suffer from issues with anxietyoften prefer audio-only sessions to face-to-face or video sessions withlicensed mental health professionals. Having the comfort of knowing they canreceive professional advice without being judged on their physical appearanceor having to leave the comfort and safety of their homes is desirable for manyonline therapy clients.


Face-to-face video therapy sessions are one ofthe most popular online therapy methods that are most like in-person orin-office therapy sessions. Therapists who offer video therapy can connect withtheir clients at the desired time using popular video chat apps like Skype,Zoom, or Facetime. Both parties must be using the same platform to connect.

When therapists provide distance therapyservices via an online therapy group, the options for providing e-counselingand therapy are expanded and handled by the online platform.  Online therapy platforms like BetterHelpprovide a safe and secure meeting space for therapists and clients to connect.Remote therapy sessions on the BetterHelp (and similar online therapy groupproviders) are conducted via audio, video, and SMS Messaging.

Clients who are shy, short on time, or unableto be available for traditional full-length sessions enjoy the flexibility thatunlimited SMS messaging therapy sessions provide. Leading SMS messaging therapysessions isn’t very much different than having a text conversation with afriend or a loved one. In most cases, the therapist will initiate the firstconversation and provide the client with their contact information, officehours, and other important information.

From there, online therapy group providerslike BetterHelp provide for 24-hour unlimited SMS messaging sessions betweentherapists and clients via their secure online platform. While audio, video andemail messaging are available options, many online therapy clients are optingfor SMS messaging due to the convenience factor and its ease-of-use.

Clients have the comfort of knowing they canalways reach their therapists -- no matter what time of the day or night.Therapists never miss important messages from clients and can make importantnotes and decisions regarding the path of client therapy on-the-go.

Duration and Frequency of Sessions

Unlike in-office and traditional face-to-facetherapy sessions that typically last between forty-five to sixty minutes --remote therapy sessions are more flexible. E-counseling sessions can last aslong as traditional in-office therapy sessions offline or for shorter periodsas short as a few minutes. Due to the availability of quick contact optionslike SMS messaging, online sessions can last anywhere from 10 minutes to anhour depending on your arrangement. Many online therapy clients prefer shortermore frequent sessions to longer sessions that can last up to an hour.

During therapy sessions, licensed therapiststalk to clients about life issues, concerns, hopes, successes, goals, and otherimportant topics. For the client, the most important part of the therapysessions (regardless of length) is that therapists and mental health counselorsprovide realistic and workable solutions similar to those that are implementedwith clients and therapists meet in a face-to-face environment.

Someonline therapy clients report a higher level of satisfaction with their onlineservices due to the privacy and flexibility afforded by taking part in distancetherapy sessions.

Clients login from the privacy and comfort oftheir homes, offices, dorms, and other private locations to touch base withtherapists and work their therapy plan. A therapy plan is a set of guidelinesdetermined by therapists and mental health clients that help the clientvisualize the personalized goals they’ve set for themselves.

After your online session with clients,therapists are required to keep detailed notes to identify areas of improvementand to evaluate the client’s progress toward achieving set goals.

When you provide online therapy services viaan online therapy group or practice, the majority of the technical detailsincluding platform connection issues, appointment scheduling, billing, andtherapist matching are handled by the secure platform. All sessions with onlinetherapy groups take place on an encrypted platform that protects confidentialdata and prevent others from gaining access to therapists and clients’ personalinformation.

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