Teletherapy or "telepractice", is the use of technology to deliver Speech-Language Pathology and Occupational Therapy services at a distance by linking therapist to client for evaluation, therapy, therapeutic education or consultation.
Published research studies have documented the efficacy of teletherapy, and several leading professional organizations recognize the benefit of therapy delivered online. The American Speech-Language Hearing Association (ASHA) has endorsed teletherapy as an effective way to provide Speech-Language Services.
Think FaceTime or Skype. Each teletherapy session requires a HIPAA compliant "platform", or a private screen space to conduct the session. Both the therapist and client will be visible on the platform via a camera, and often, there is the ability to "screen share" or display documents and/or videos. Materials are presented similarly to face-to-face "table top" sessions, but in a digital format.
Following some tips will help make this transition go smoothly.
• Google Chrome works best, please download ahead of time.
• No streaming in the house at the same time, ex. Netflix. This will help with the speed or
your internet and allow for a smoother session.
• You are the "hands" on the other side of the screen. Your therapist may need your
assistance to be successful. Always be available to help your child, if needed.
• Your therapist may ask for your assistance to help manage behaviors that interfere
with therapy progress, (i.e., inattention, vocal outbursts, refusal to participate, etc.). It's
important to work together to reward positive behavior, as this will maximize
• The therapy schedule is important. Your child has been given an appointment time. Similar
to any appointment, try your best to log in on time. Often, clients are scheduled in back to
back appointment blocks, making it difficult to extend a session past its allotted time.
• The environment for therapy should be relatively quiet, and free from distraction. The
room should be well-lit, preferably with natural light.
• Have a list of important contacts ready, such as your therapists phone number or email
address, in case the appointment does not go as planned. Technology issues can surface,
making it difficult to communicate via the platform.
• Ask how you can help before we say "goodbye"! Therapy progress depends on everyone
involved. There are many things you can do to maximize your child’s success.
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