Bana Jobe

Dial in to Mental Health With Telehealth Options

Current events have exacerbated existing mental health issues like anxiety, stress and depression. You have probably had to juggle multiple priorities at the same time and combine or restrict many parts of your life into the walls of your home. In return, you may be experiencing new issues or an increase in triggers and reactions. Changes to your mental health are entirely normal, and you can seek help as either a continuation of your existing mental health plan, or as a new patient, without leaving your home though online, or telehealth, appointments.

Benefits of Telehealth

  1. Convenient: You can visit with a therapist from the comfort of your home.

  2. Quick: With telehealth tools like LiveHealth Online, you can usually see a therapist in a matter of days.

  3. Cost-Effective: Check with your health insurance provider first, but telehealth visits are often priced the same as an office visit, and may be covered by your health insurance plan.

  4. Confidential: Telehealth therapists are held to the same professional confidentiality policies as in-person therapists.

Deciding if Telehealth is Right for You

If you are already receiving mental health care, your doctor or therapist may offer telehealth or video chat appointments directly. If you prefer to continue with your current caregiver, contact them to learn about their telehealth services and discuss if those are the right choice for you.

Telehealth services, like Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield’s LiveHealth Online, offer visits with therapists, psychiatrists or psychologists over the phone or through video-chat, using a mobile device, your laptop, or a tablet. You can schedule appointments that are convenient for you, and choose from a wide range of therapists and doctors.

Whether you choose to receive your care over the phone, via the computer or in person – or a combination – up to you. Just need to know that someone is there to listen.

Telehealth counseling is not appropriate for all kinds of problems. If you are in crisis or have suicidal thoughts, it’s important that you seek help immediately. Please call 1-800-273-8255 (National Suicide Prevention Lifeline) or 911 and ask for help. If your issue is an emergency, call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room. Telehealth services may not offer emergency services.

This article, originally published on The Benefits Guide August 9, 2019, has been updated to reflect the current circumstances faced by our audience during the ongoing COVID crisis.