Reach Out and Shrink Someone: Clinical Practice in the Age of Technology - Higher Thought Institute
The 21st Century has brought innovations that require therapists to consider confidentiality, record keeping and boundary controversies especially in this time of online therapy during the COVID epidemic. This workshop will address personal versus professional website issues, reputation protection (Yelp), teletherapy and working across state lines in a pandemic,  specific informed consent for telehealth, and updates on proper internet record keeping. Literature updates, expert opinion, and relevant ethics codes will be discussed.

 Session 1:

  • The basics of practicing vigilant ethics
  • The “Four Sorting Bins” ethical decision making
  • Four mechanisms holding psychotherapists accountable
  • Types of unethical practice
  • Definitions and terminology for telepsychology
  • What does the APA say about working across state lines
  • Psychotherapists as “essential” workers?
  • Providing teletherapy across state lines
  • Working across state lines in the time of COVID

 Session 2:

  • Third party rule
  • Handling social media
  • Social media policy
  • Including Texts and emails in patient records
  • Ethical issues related to patient-therapist online searches
  • Barriers to telepsychology
  • Statistics and prevalence of internet users
  • Research on use of internet by psychotherapists
  • Confidentiality issues
  • Recommendations for therapists who use the internet
  • How to protect your patients
  • How to protect your practice
  • Reputation protection
  •           Legal and ethical issues
  •           Yelp other online issues


  1. Identify ethical issues related to when psychotherapists can practice across state lines
  2. Review an informed consent form for online therapy
  3. Understand the importance of the “Third party rule” in the age of technology
June 26 @ 11:00
11:00 — 14:15 (3h 15′)

Pamela Harmell, Ph.D

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