COVID-19 and Psychology Services: How to Protect Your Patients and Your Practice

Posted: March 10, 2020

Public health officials are monitoring the spread of the coronavirus. Psychologists can take steps now to prepare their practices, address patient concerns and manage anxiety in their communities.

Prepare your practice

Consider how a potential outbreak in your community might affect your business. Review your finances and business policies and determine how you can be more flexible. Can you alter your cancellation policy or waive fees to accommodate potential last-minute cancellations? Do you have enough in reserves to cover expenses if you experience a decline in services or become ill yourself? Do you have a plan for someone to handle communications and pay your bills if you become ill? 

Explore telepsychology options

Are you equipped to offer psychology services via phone or secure videoconferencing from your office or home during an outbreak or quarantine? Check APA’s guidelines for the practice of telepsychology as well as "How to make the most of telepsychology and steer clear of pitfalls." If you are on insurance panels, be sure to confirm whether they will reimburse for services provided in this manner. Talk with patients about using telehealth platforms to meet for appointments if illness interferes with face-to-face sessions.

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