Coronavirus and Telehealth

We are open for Telehealth sessions!


TeleHealth

What is it? Telehealth is videoconferencing, like Skype, except it uses a HIPAA compliant platform to ensure confidentiality.  Your therapist will send you a meeting invitation to your email or even cell phone. You just click on the link, and your therapist will be on the other end, ready to see you as usual.

We have offered telehealth services for several years now for our out of-town clients, or those with transportation or childcare issues.  Our clinicians are used to this modality and find it effective and useful.

You can easily continue your mental health services with no disruption if you opt for telehealth, and you will have a very similar experience to your in-person sessions.

Does it work as well as in-person sessions?  Yes. Telehealth has been available for counseling for years. Multiple studies over these years have found that in broad use, it is just as effective as in-person sessions in terms of symptom reduction, especially when the therapist and client already know each other from in-person settings.  Some studies have found telehealth can even be superior for adolescent clients and those with autism. It is typically more convenient for clients as well.

What we experience personally is that some clients (and some therapists) miss the in-person connection and would prefer to have that. However, we all agree that the telehealth is much better than no session at all, and that clients absolutely make progress with this modality on their goals.

How do I convert my current in-person appointment to telehealth? You can do that a number of different ways.

  • You may email admin@spencerpsychology.com
  • Email your therapist directly
  • Text us at (866) 222-1629
  • Call us at 812-333-8474

Will my insurance cover it? Yes. Insurance companies pay for telehealth sessions if they would cover the same session in-person. We have had no problems with insurance coverage for telehealth.

Managed care HIP and managed care Medicaid will cover (MHS, CareSource, Anthem and MDwise). We can still do telehealth for Medicare and Traditional Medicaid clients as a self-pay service, and there is some movement in the legislature to allow Medicare access to telehealth soon too. All other commercial insurance, including Anthem, Blue Cross/Blue Shield, SIHO, and IU Health Plans will cover at the usual fee.

Cancelation Fees Waived: All late cancelation fees will be waived for the duration of the virus. We are not requiring that you are sick to be able to cancel. We are all working from home right now, and sometimes it’s hard to keep an appointment with all the current chaos.

How do I start?

It’s easy and free:

  • We use HIPAA compliant Zoom as our platform, but HIPAA regulations have recently relaxed for telehealth, so we can now use any platform you prefer (Skype, Google Hangouts, even FaceTime). If you would like to use an alternative platform to Zoom, please let your clinician know so that he/she can become familiar with it before your appointment.
  • To start, please go to this Spencer Psychology link and electronically sign the telehealth consent form: https://enroll.spencerpsychology.com/telehealthconsent (you can “submit” the form. No need to scan it back to us).
  • If using Zoom, go to   https://zoom.us
  • Download the free software
  • When it is time for your appointment, look in your email. Your clinician will email you a link for a Zoom meeting. Click on that link and you will see the below screen. Click “open link” at the bottom of the smaller window with the blue box.
  • When it opens, click on “join with audio” and “join with video”
  • Your clinician will be waiting once you have joined. If your video and audio are on, you will now be able to see and hear your therapist. If you see a black screen with only your therapist’s name, your video is off. Go to the bottom and you will see a little camera with a red line through it. Click on that and the camera will turn on.

If you can’t hear, click on “Unmute” at the bottom where there is an icon of a microphone.

Keep your cell phone nearby for a backup, in case there are technical difficulties.  Your therapist will then call you.

How do I pay for my sessions? There is a payment link on our website. https://spencerpsychology.com/product/make-a-payment/  Many clients owe the same thing every time they come.

If your copay changes, or you are unsure what you owe, please contact us:

Payment is due prior to your telehealth service.

What if I need some tech help? We have you covered. Getting started is usually pretty seamless and takes less than five minutes. If you hit a snag, you can email us at admin@spencerpsychology.com and request one of us to call you to walk you through the set up (please remember to send us your preferred phone number). We can also do a quick test meeting for you to be sure it’s all working prior to your appointment. That way you will be ready to go when your appointment starts, and your therapist sends the email invitation.