What is this?
Online therapy, also known as e-therapy, e-counseling, teletherapy or cyber-counseling, is a relatively new development in mental health in which a licensed therapist or counselor provides support and counseling via the Internet.
We are located in Newark, Ohio but are not a brick and mortar organization. We are a system of support you can access with a device you use everyday – your smartphone. What we have is experience, passion and an understanding of what you are going through, and the support and knowledge needed to help you get through it.
For a cost similar to what you would have as a copay for weekly face-to-face counseling, online counseling provides you with a live video or phone session (with an option to purchase more), plus daily messaging throughout the week with your counselor. If you are going through a difficult time, instead of just seeing your counselor once a week in their office, you can check in with your counselor daily through online messaging.
Instead of having to come into an agency or office for an hour once a week, online counseling allows you to connect with your counselor more frequently, conveniently, and as issues arise throughout your busy week.
Using a secure and HIPAA compliant app, you can easily message your counselor to discuss whatever thoughts you’re struggling with or process any emotions you’re feeling. If there’s a lot going on, you can check in for a live video counseling session with your counselor or talk over the phone.
It works just like face-to-face counseling but in a “virtual room“. The benefit is that this “virtual room” (or counseling office) travels with you, where you are, and is only as far away as your smart phone.
What do I do?
• Using your smart phone or tablet, you can check in throughout the day with your counselor on how you’re feeling or about any counseling issue.
• There is no limit to how much you can message and it depends on your needs and what you feel would benefit you.
• Your counselor will check in at least once a day (each weekday and as needed on the weekends) to respond to what you have written, give feedback, or ask more questions.
• In addition to the daily messaging, you can also check in live with your counselor via a phone call or live video session.
How do I sign up?
1) To engage in online counseling you will first purchase the messaging plan or individual live video or phone sessions.
2) You will then be redirected to the page where you read and sign the consent for online counseling for your chosen counselor.
3) After you agree and submit the consent for online counseling you will then be directed to the page where you download the app which will allow you to communicate with your counselor through messages, phone or live video.
4) The counselor you have chosen will be notified that you signed up and will connect with you (through email you signed up with or through the messaging app you downloaded) to determine your first live video or phone session, answer any questions you have and to begin the counseling process. Please allow a couple hours after you sign up for your counselor to reach out to you. If you sign up during the evening or night hours your counselor will respond to you the following day.
Why do I have to download a specific app?
Because counseling deals with personal and private information it’s important to make sure that your information is as secure as possible. There’s always a risk of your private health information being compromised when you utilize any online communication means.
To reduce the risk that your private health information is seen by anyone other than who you intend, it’s important to use secure apps that are HIPAA compliant. You can read more about HIPAA safeguards and guidelines HERE.
You can read about the particular apps and other important HIPAA information in each counselors “Consent for Online Counseling”.
Why do I have to be in Ohio?
Due to the regulations of individual state licensure boards, licensed counselors can only counsel current residents in the state they are licensed. For example, if a counselor is licensed in the state of Ohio then they can only counsel Ohio residents. So, if you reside in Ohio (or in some cases outside the United States), Shrinks R Us can provide you professional individual counseling. If you are not a resident of Ohio and want etherapy, you will need to find someone licensed in the state that you reside. This does make things more difficult as the online world takes off but is meant to help protect and safeguard the quality of care that you get.
We use only secure HIPAA compliant platforms to communicate and store your information.
Ohio mental health and alcohol drug counseling online.