Whether face-to-face counselling is the best way to treat patients, or newer, technology enabled techniques like tele-psychiatry or web-based counselling (remote counselling) can work just as well is an ongoing debate.
But one thing that can be said without a doubt and substantiated with facts, is that the popularity of telephone and web-based talk therapy has continued to grow over the years, and the reasons can be the many benefits it brings with it.
Some of the major benefits of remote counselling:
- It reaches people in remote places and in rural areas who would otherwise have no access to such facilities
- People who are housebound due to disability or other reasons can also avail the benefits of expert counselling
- It is much more accessible as it can be accessed from any place of convenience
- The perceived privacy that comes with visiting a â€œshrinkâ€ online as compared to physically visiting a clinic is important for some
- Some people are more comfortable discussing their mental health issues behind the veil of technology as opposed to face-to-face, and may help the mental health practitioner understand the situation better
- For web-based treatment, the client may be more objective while discussing the issues as s/he is writing it down in order to communicate, which may provide an opportunity for them to be able to view the problem without associating it directly with their emotions
- The client also feels a bit more involved as s/he enjoys a greater degree of ownership of the process
Since it is equally, or perhaps even more important, to measure feedback in remote counselling, therapists need a tool that can do it for them. It is for this reason that MyOutcomes, added the option for the clinicians to give their client remote access to the Outcomes Rating Scale (ORS, CORS) and Session Rating Scale (SRS, CSRS,GSRS). In 2019, we released MyOutcomes Mobile®, a free app for clients to download from iTunes or Google Play onto their smartphone or tablet, making it easier than ever for clients to complete these measures. This remote access feature enables providers to create a user ID and password that they can give the client to log in on their own home computer, phone or tablet and record their current ORS and SRS responses.
The client will then see a field for them to take the appropriate scale (ORS/CORS/SRS/CRSR/GSRS). That's it! As soon as the client has completed the scales, the therapist will be able to see the results on their own device in real time.