Making Teletherapy Sustainable for Your Campus
As the world becomes increasingly digital, teletherapy has become a popular way for students to access mental health services. Teletherapy is a form of therapy that is conducted over video, phone, or text messaging. It allows students to receive the help they need without having to physically visit a therapist’s office.
Teletherapy has become even more important during the COVID-19 pandemic, as students have been isolated from their support systems and may be experiencing increased stress and anxiety.
Here are some ways to make teletherapy sustainable for your campus:
Invest in relevant technology
To make teletherapy sustainable for your campus, it’s important to invest in technology that’s reliable and user-friendly. This may include purchasing video conferencing software, providing students with smartphones or tablets for teletherapy sessions, or ensuring that your campus Wi-Fi is strong enough to support online counseling sessions.
Train your staff
Teletherapy requires different skills and techniques than in-person therapy. It’s important to train your counseling staff in how to conduct teletherapy sessions, including how to build rapport with students over video or phone, how to deal with technical issues, and how to ensure that students feel comfortable and safe during their sessions.
Create clear policies and guidelines
To ensure that teletherapy is sustainable and effective for your campus, it’s important to create clear policies and guidelines for both students and staff. This may include guidelines for how to schedule teletherapy sessions, what to do if a session is interrupted due to technical issues, and how to ensure the privacy and confidentiality of teletherapy sessions.
Communicate (even overcommunicate) with students
To ensure that teletherapy is sustainable for your campus, it’s important to communicate with students about the availability of teletherapy services and how to access them. This may include sending regular emails or newsletters to students, creating a webpage or portal where students can access teletherapy resources, or hosting virtual meetings to discuss the benefits of teletherapy.
To ensure that teletherapy is sustainable for your campus, it’s important to regularly evaluate its effectiveness. This may include gathering feedback from students and staff about their experiences with teletherapy, tracking the number of students who access teletherapy services, and monitoring student outcomes.
Address equity issues
To ensure that teletherapy is sustainable for your campus, it’s important to address equity issues related to access and availability. This may include providing teletherapy services to students who live in remote or underserved areas, ensuring that students with disabilities have access to teletherapy services, and providing resources for students who may not have access to technology or internet connectivity.
Teletherapy is an important tool for providing mental health services to students, especially during times of stress and uncertainty. By investing in technology, training staff, creating clear policies, communicating with students, evaluating effectiveness, and addressing equity issues, you can make teletherapy sustainable for your campus and ensure that students have access to the support they need to thrive.