Last year, the Covid-19 pandemic largely moved all of psychotherapy online when connecting virtually became the only safe way for therapists and their clients to meet. Will this migration to online therapy shape the future of psychotherapy beyond the pandemic? Last month, we surveyed both therapists and consumers of therapy (i.e., those who are currently in therapy, have been in therapy, or have shown interest in therapy by subscribing to our newsletter) to better understand their impressions of online therapy.
With the caveat that insurance companies will continue to provide telehealth coverage for mental health services beyond the pandemic, we asked therapists and consumers their preferred medium for therapy going forward. Here are their responses:
Among both groups, the majority indicated a preference for flexibility to choose between in-person and online therapy. Among therapists, only 3% reported plans to practice only in person beyond the pandemic, suggesting most therapists will continue to offer online therapy as a component of their practice as long as insurance companies continue to cover it.
Online therapy improves access to licensed therapists for people living in rural areas and those with transportation or mobility limitations. It’s also a lot more convenient – you don’t have to leave your house or factor in travel time to be connected with your therapist. And the same is true for therapists – they now have access to clients they wouldn’t have before, and they’re also allowed the conveniences of working from home and skipping a commute to work.
That said, it’s not the ideal choice for everyone. Not everyone has a reliable internet connection or a device with a camera. Some people might not have a private space at home where they won’t be disturbed. And some people – therapists and their clients alike – simply might prefer to be in the same room for therapy at least some of the time.
Freedom and Flexibility
Great Lakes Psychology Group understands that the flexibility to customize your private practice to fit your lifestyle contributes to a better quality of life.
We are hiring qualified licensed mental healthcare professionals. Click here to learn more about how we can support your dream private practice.