Confronted with joining a frantically long NHS waiting list…Better Help Take Insurance… “I just felt that I could not wait any longer– I was motivated and ready to deal with my concerns and quite liked the concept of doing so in the comfort of my own house,” said the 29-year-old, who lives in London. After an online search, he found a therapist whose profile fit his needs and booked a chat session for the next day.
The medical professional app Babylon uses therapy to 150,000 active users, while PlusGuidance, an online counselling service, has 10,000 users. Talkspace, another online therapy platform, reports it has actually 500,000 registered users worldwide, with many in the US.
Online training encourages therapists on whatever from using emojis to preventing misconceptions. They also need to secure patients’ personal data– an issue that has triggered debate in the US, where huge online therapy platforms have come under the spotlight.
Buckley stated patients must examine services’ privacy policies before registering. “Not all online counselling websites use professionally trained therapists or abide by an ethics policy, so ask your GP for a recommendation in the very first circumstances. Just like all kinds of services and assistance, what works for one person may not work for somebody else,” he stated.
Marc Bush, chief policy consultant at Young Minds, stated that while online counselling services are valuable, “they should not change face-to-face therapy with a skilled professional. If a young adult is having a hard time, we would encourage them to speak to their GP in the very first instance, or to get in touch with an established service like The Mix, Childline or the Samaritans.”.
For Rackham, who has generalised stress and anxiety disorder, online counselling wasn’t the best fit. “I felt it was near impossible for the therapist to really get a sense of the problems I was dealing with, as all they had to go from was my typed-out words. I think I realised after that online session how crucial interpersonal interaction was.