This is a question many practitioners ask, and the answer is surprisingly simplistic. The single most important thing you can do to make you clients more comfortable with virtual therapy treatment is to control expectations, by being proactive versus reactive.
Put together a “cheat sheet” for clients, outlining the steps to get their account set up and walk them through logging on. You can review this with them, but they won’t remember everything – give them something to refer to! To make this easy for our practitioners, we have put together a Client Quick Reference Guide Template that you can easily customize and distribute to your clients!
You may want to offer a free, short session of 10 minutes to help them get connected and feel comfortable with using the VTConnect Virtual Treatment Room. This will minimize anxiety (and potential problems) during the first online session.
Let them know that it might feel awkward interacting virtually during the first few sessions and that is completely normal and okay. Like any new practice, it will soon feel normal. Remember when we used to answer the phone without knowing who was calling? That seems unthinkable now! We have all adjusted to vast changes in how we communicate thanks to technology – our clients may need to be reminded of just how far they (and we) have come, even within the last 5 years.
Remember that you are setting the tone for the virtual session. The more comfortable you are, the more comfortable your client will be.
– Helen Nichols, PhD, MSW