By Carolina Boyd
As the world deals with the uncertainty of COVID-19, many parents and their children are overwhelmed by the anxiety that comes from the unknown. But concern about accessing behavioral health does not have to be an issue for families struggling during this time. Legacy Community Health has launched telehealth services for our pediatric behavioral health patients.
Telehealth is the remote diagnosis and treatment of patients using technology. It involves live interactive video conferencing through the use of personal devices like webcams, laptops, tablets and smart phones.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that patients, regardless of age, with preexisting mental health conditions continue their behavioral health treatments during the COVID-19 pandemic. The new telehealth program will give our patients continued access to licensed professional counselors who are experts in treating anxiety, depression, behavioral problems and more.
Pediatric patients often suffer from the stigma that can come from needing behavioral health care. Telehealth appointments allow young patients to meet with their mental health providers without ever needing to leave their home. Since children and teens are typically at ease with electronic devices, it is also a familiar channel to use for much needed care.
Telehealth care is available to all Legacy pediatric behavioral patients as long as they or their parents have access to a computer with camera/microphone capabilities or access to smart phones or similar devices. Patients utilizing a computer will simply click on a link provided to them via email with their appointment details.
Patients using smart phones or devices will need to download the free Zoom app and register for an account before their first appointment. All patients will be provided with a telehealth consent form and will have to give verbal consent the first time they meet virtually with their provider.
Existing patients can begin scheduling appointments now by contacting their provider. New patients should visit LegacyCommunityHealth.org for more details!