How NOT to Run Your Online Practice

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Writing for the Atlantic Online, Joseph Burgo describes his experience providing psychotherapy sessions over video as a mental health provider.

Burgo has some interesting things to say about expatriates and the psychological problems they confront. But his article suffers a major flaw: he doesn’t realize that his online practice is unethical.

That’s because he uses Skype for his patient sessions. It is well documented that Skype does not comply with HIPAA. Furthermore, Skype has always been in the hot seat for leaving a backdoor access to encrypted user data. Therefore, the private information that Burgo’s patients share with him may not be secure.

Mental-health providers should do their research before choosing a video conference solution. While Skype may be a household name, it has a poor reputation for being secure, and just doesn’t come across as a very professional video chat tool. Besides, there are more than a few alternatives. VSee’s Cloud Medical Office, for example, is 100 percent HIPAA-compliant, and we offer a complete workflow solution that allows psychologists to send prescriptions, schedule appointments, and keep their records secure.

Read more of VSee’s advantages over Skype.

Comments ( 1 )
  • Michael Vegas Mussman
    Kathy Shattler MS,RDN says:

    This is a very hot debate with mental health professionals right now. I also see a great number of RDNs in private practice using skype. It is because they just don’t know any better – just like myself until Laurence G. straightened me out on the subject. Thank you Laurence for changing my mind about Skype in a timely manner!!!

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