Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions About Telepsychiatry

For Mental Health Providers, please visit our:
Telepsychiatry FAQ for Psychiatrists

For Health Care Facilities, please visit our:
Telepsychiatry FAQ for Mental Health Facilities

Q: What is telemedicine, telehealth?
A: Telemedicine is a branch of medicine in the field of health care delivery. There are currently two delivery methods. The primary includes evaluating and treating patients over live videoconferencing or telephonic equipment. The other modality includes store and forward delivery methods for example the branch of tele-radiology through email.
Q: What is telepsychiatry, e-psychiatry, telemedicine psychiatry, telemental health, telebehavioral health?
A: Telepsychiatry, also known as e-psychiatry, is the application of telemedicine in psychiatry. As of 2013, telepsychiatry has been the most successful of all the telemedicine applications to date, as it typically only needs adequate videoconferencing equipment between the patient and the psychiatrist.
Q: What telepsychiatry services do you provide?
A: We provide a wide range of telepsychiatry services:

  • We allow individuals to connect to a Psychiatrist, PMHNP, PA, Psychologist, therapist or Mental Health Counselor through e-Psychiatry that are actively practicing telepsychiatry.

  • We give psychiatrist and other mental health providers looking to add telepsychiatry to their practice by allowing access to our video conferencing software, EMR, and patient base.

  • We give mental health clinics, hospitals, jails, and other institutions and organizations a way to contract with one or more of our network of psychiatrists and other providers through the utilization of telepsychiatry.

  • We allow employers and insurance providers access to our network of providers through telepsychiatry at a discounted rate.
Q: What conditions are treated through telepsychiatry?
A: Our psychiatrists will treat the same conditions in telepsychiatry as in their general psychiatric clinics. These include mood, anxiety, thought, cognitive, substance use disorders, etc... Click for a List of Psychiatric Conditions Treated through Telepsychiatry.
Q: What software and equipment do I need for a telepsychiatry appointment?
A: Individual telepsychiatry visits are conducted through video conferencing. You need a webcam/video camera and microphone compatible with our software. You will also need a broadband internet connection (DSL, cable, T1 or higher).
Q: What type of videoconferencing do you use for mental health facilities?
A: We provide facilities with a variety of video conferencing systems so we can keep our costs as low as possible for you and your patients.
Q: What are the HIPAA requirements regarding using videoconferencing through telepsychiatry?
A: The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) does not consider videoconferencing to be protected health information (PHI), so it does not govern telepsychiatry visits. However, device encryption and a private internet connection are recommended for patient security and privacy. Most telepsychiatry equipment in use today has encryption capability as a part of their standard features. Other types of telehealth, such as the store-forward, are considered PHI and must be managed according to HIPAA requirements.
Q: Are there guidelines that needs to be followed in order to practice telepsychiatry?
A: Yes, we have telepsychiatry guidelines in place which follows federal and state laws and regulations.
Q: Are there any limitations to telepsychiatry treatment?
A: All limitations inherent in the traditional psychiatrist-patient relationship are present in telepsychiatry. You may need to visit your primary care physician prior to any treatment with medications. Not all consultations will result in the prescription of medication. When indicated, prescriptions can be sent (electronically, via fax, or by phone) to the patient's pharmacy of choice. However, some states and federal laws provide stipulations when prescribing Schedule II, III, IV and V medications. For example, if you are seeking buprenorphine (Suboxone�) treatment through a telepsychiatry visit for opiod dependence. We require that you have a yearly Face-to-Face visit with this type treatment followed with random drug testing at a facility of the prescribing physician's choice. With most other scheduled medications we only require one face to face visit. Follow-ups for all scheduled medications must be conducted through video. The psychiatrist may require additional visits and labs be done and is purely up to the prescribing physician. This may vary state to state and some state laws do not require the initial face to face visit. You can Contact Us to see exactly what your state requires. We are currently unable to provide schedule II medications unless the patient is with a contracted mental health facility.
Q: Does insurance cover telepsychiatry?
A: Most insurance carriers will reimburse you for telepsychiatry services and we can provide invoices for you to submit to your insurance. However, because of the variability in adoption and coverage of this service, the psychiatrists are unable to bill your insurance directly. We are currently forming partnerships with providers so check with your insurance to see if your visit will be covered.
Q: What states do you service using telepsychiatry?
A: We currently provide telepsychiatry services for the following states:

Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Washington DC, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming
Q: Is my privacy protected with telepsychiatry?
A: Yes. Electronic interactions with health care providers are subject to the same state and federal privacy and confidentiality laws as in-person interactions, including HIPAA. Skype transmissions use security protocols that are HIPAA and HITECH compliant. Video conferences may not be recorded by either party without written consent. Your psychiatrist will keep a confidential medical record of your care and a complete privacy policy will be provided to you upon registration.

Some aspects of the remote interaction with your physician may not be confidential. It is your responsibility to ensure the privacy of the computer, internet connection, and location from which you engage in telepsychiatry. Click to view our Privacy Policy.