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Terms and Policy

Online Video Therapy Agreement

It is important that you, as my client, understand the following:

1) To maintain privacy and your confidentiality I will only conduct video sessions from my office (with the door closed and a sound blocker on) which is a secure and confidential area.

2) There are precautions that you can take to increase confidentiality, including:                   

a)Ensuring that you are online in a private room/area with the door closed and, if possible, using some type of sound blocking device.

b)When possible, connect to the Internet directly (as opposed to using public WiFi; this also helps with transmission).

c)Make sure to log off, not just disconnect from the call when the session is over.

3) Make the same commitment to your online session that you would to an in-office appointment.

a) Don't be late.

b) Limit distractions - turn off cell phones; avoid 'split screens.' Explain to others that you are unavailable for the next hour. Unless we are conducting couples therapy there should be no one else in the room with you during our session.

c) Have your computer on a firm surface and sit on a comfortable sofa/chair or at a desk if possible.

d) Check the audio/visual in the 'preferences' each time before a session so that you can see what I am seeing and that the audio level is sufficient.

4) An online session is subject to our 24-hour cancellation policy.

5) Online counseling can be useful and helpful for most, but it is not appropriate for everyone. This is especially true if you are in need of immediate medical or psychiatric help. If it is determined during our sessions that your issues are not appropriate for online counseling, you will be given information on resources in your area to contact.

6)I have read the Video Therapy Agreement. I understand and agree to comply with the policies as they are described and acknowledge receipt of this agreement and attest that I am at least 18 years of age or older.

( Type Full Name )
Agreement for Services and Notice of Practice’s Policies to Protect the Privacy of Your Health Information

THIS NOTICE DESCRIBES HOW HEALTH CARE INFORMATION ABOUT YOU MAY BE USED AND DISCLOSED AND HOW YOU CAN GET ACCESS TO THIS INFORMATION. PLEASE REVIEW IT CAREFULLY

Uses and Disclosure for Treatment, Payment and Health Care Operations

We may use or disclose your protected health information (PHI), for treatment, payment, and health care operations purposes with your consent. To help clarify these terms, here are some definitions:

PHI refers to information in your health record that could identify you

Treatment and health care options: treatment is when we provide, coordinate or manage your health care and other services related to your health care. An example of treatment would be when we consult with another health care provider, such as family physician or another mental health clinician. Health care operations are activities that relate to the performance and operation of the practice. Examples of health care operations are quality assessment and improvement activities, business-related matters such as audits and administrative services, case management and coordination of care.

Use applies to only activities within the practice such as sharing, employing, applying, utilizing, examining and analyzing information that identifies you.

Disclosure applies to activities outside of the practice such as releasing, transferring, or providing access to information about you and other parties.

Uses and Disclosures Requiring Authorization

We may use or disclose PHI for purposes outside of treatment, payment and health care operations when you sign a separate authorization allowing us to do so. We will also need to obtain a separate authorization before releasing therapy notes. These notes are given a greater deal of protection than PHI.

You may revoke all such authorizations of PHI or therapy notes at any time, provided each revoking is in writing. You may not revoke an authorization to the extent 1) we have relied on authorization; 2) if the authorization was obtained as a condition of insurance coverage and the law provides insurer the right to contest the claim under the policy.

Uses and Disclosures with Neither Consent nor Authorization

We may use or disclose PHI without your consent or authorization in the following circumstances:

Child Abuse: If we have reasonable cause, on the basis of our professional judgment to suspect child abuse of children with whom we come in contact in our professional capacity, we are required by law to report this to the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare.

Adult or Domestic Abuse: If we have reasonable cause to believe an adult is in need of protective services (regarding abuse, neglect, exploitation, or abandonment) we may report such to a local agency which provides protective services.

Litigation Limitation: Due to the nature of the therapeutic process and the fact that it often involves making a full disclosure with regard to many matters which may be of a confidential nature, it is agreed that should there be legal proceedings (such as, but not limited to divorce and custody disputes, injuries, disability claims, lawsuits, etc..), neither you (client's) nor your attorney's, nor anyone else acting on your behalf will call on your therapist or any other party with eTalkTherapy to testify in court or at any other proceeding, nor will a disclosure of the therapy records be requested or released.

Serious Threat to Health or Safety: If you express a serious threat or intent to kill or seriously injure yourself or an identified or readily identifiable person or group of people and we determine that you are likely to carry out the threat, we must take reasonable measures to prevent harm. Reasonable measures may include directly advising a potential victim of threat or intent. For this purpose, we may also contact the person whose name you have provided on the biographical sheet.

Emergency Procedures: If you need to contact your therapist between sessions, please send an email. Your therapist checks his/her messages several times during the day, unless he/she is out of town. If an emergency situation arises, indicate it clearly in your message and if you need to talk to someone right away call 911 or go the nearest emergency room.

Cancellation Policy: If you fail to cancel a scheduled appointment, we cannot use this time for another client and therefore you will be billed $65.00 for the missed appointment. $65.00 is charged for missed appointments for cancellations with less than a 24-hour notice unless it is due to an emergency. The credit card that we will have on file for you will be charged if you fail to cancel your appointment without advance notice.

Termination: As set forth, after the first few sessions, your therapist will assess if he/she can be of benefit to you. eTalkTherapy does not accept clients who they believe they cannot help. In such a case, you will be given a number of referrals who you can contact. If at any point during therapy your therapist assesses that he/she is not effective in helping you reach the therapeutic goals or that you appear to be uncommitted to the therapeutic process he/she is obligated to discuss it with you and, if appropriate, to terminate treatment. In such a case, he/she will give you a number of referrals that may be of help to you. You have the right to terminate therapy at any time. If you choose to do so, and if appropriate, your therapist will offer to provide you with names of other qualified professionals or resources.

The Process and Scope of Therapy: Participation in therapy can result in a number of benefits to you, including improving interpersonal relationships and resolution of the specific concerns that led you to seek therapy. Working toward these benefits, however, requires effort on your part. Therapy requires your active involvement, honesty, and openness in order to change your thoughts, feelings and/or behavior. During evaluation or therapy, remembering or talking about unpleasant events, feelings, or thoughts can result in you experiencing considerable discomfort or strong feelings of anger, sadness, worry, fear, etc, or experiencing anxiety, depression, insomnia, etc. Your therapist may challenge some of your assumptions or perceptions or propose different ways of looking at, thinking about, or handling situations, which can cause you to feel very upset, angry, depressed, challenged or disappointed. Attempting to resolve issues that brought you to therapy in the first place, such as personal or interpersonal relationships may result in changes that were not originally intended. Therapy may result in decisions about changing behaviors, employment, substance use, schooling, housing or relationships. Sometimes a decision that is positive for one family member is viewed quite negatively by another family member. Change will sometimes be easy and swift, but it can be slow and even frustrating. There is no guarantee that therapy will yield positive or intended results. During the course of therapy, your therapist is likely to draw on various counseling approaches according to the issue that is being treated and his/her assessment of what will best benefit you. Your therapist provides neither custody evaluation recommendations, nor medication or prescription recommendation nor legal advice, as these activities do not fall within the scope of a counseling practice. Your therapist will not write letters for legal matters or disputes or disability claims nor will he/she participate in legal proceedings (see above).

There may be additional disclosures of PHI that we are required or permitted by law to make without your consent or authorization, however, the disclosures listed above are the most common.

Client's Rights and Practice's Duties

Client's Rights:

Right to request restrictions: You have the right to request restrictions on certain uses and disclosures of PHI about you. However, we are not required to agree to a restriction you request.

Right to receive confidential communications by alternative means and at alternative locations: You have the right to receive confidential communications of PHI by alternative means and at alternative locations. For example, you may not want a family member to know that you are seeing us. Upon your request, we will discuss with you the details of the amendment process.

Right to amend: You have the right to request an amendment of PHI for as long as the PHI is maintained in the record. We may deny your request. On your request, we will discuss with you the details of the amendment process.

Right to an accounting: You generally have the right to receive an accounting of disclosures of PHI for which you have neither provided consent nor authorization (as described in section III of this notice). Upon your request, we will discuss with you the details of the accounting process.

Right to a paper copy: You have the right to obtain a paper copy of this notice from us upon request, even if you have agreed to receive this notice electronically.

Health Care Provider Duties

We are required by law to maintain the privacy of PHI and to provide you with a notice of our legal duties and privacy practices with respect to PHI.

We reserve the right to change the privacy policies and practices described in this notice. Unless we notify you of such changes, however, we are required to abide by the terms currently in effect.

If we revise our policies and procedures, we will notify you.

Questions and Complaints

If you have questions about this notice, disagree with a decision made about access to your record, or have other concerns about your privacy rights, you may contact our office.

If you believe that your privacy rights have been violated and wish to file a complaint with the office, you may send your written complaint to:

eTalkTherapy, LLC.

PO Box 234

Wexford, PA 15090

etalktherapy@gmail.com

You may also send a written complaint to the Secretary of the US Department of Health and Human Services. The office can provide you with the appropriate address upon request.

You have specific privacy rights under the privacy rule. We will not retaliate against you for exercising your right to file a complaint.

Effective Date, Restrictions and Changes to Privacy Rule

This notice is effective immediately.

I acknowledge that I have received, read and understand the Agreement for Services and Notice of the Practice's Policies. I attest that I am at least 18 years of age or older.

( Type Full Name )