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Changes Online Therapy Dr Karen Williams Online Therapy in the UK

We live in a digital age, where our presence online is part of our everyday lives. Most people nowadays have an online presence and/or get involved in social networking and I would like to be clear about how I interact online, in order to maintain therapeutic boundaries. I take the confidentiality of the information you share with me seriously and if we work together I will not refer to any clinical material in any media activities with which I may be involved.

Email use for pre-arranged online therapy

After initial contact I advocate keeping confidential information safe by use of an encrypted email provider. I have access to an encrypted email provider called Protonmail and I will discuss using this service with you. Email therapy will only be provided via Protonmail.

Text messages

I am happy for you to contact me by text to let me know at short notice that you are running late/cancelling a session etc. However, the lack of content in a text can sometimes make it prone to miscommunication and if you have something important to discuss with me, please contact me by telephone. If your call is unanswered, I will respond at the earliest opportunity, within working hours.

Use of webcam/IM for therapy

Zoom and VSee are used to conduct therapy via webcam/IM securely and this may involve you clicking on a link in an email or downloading a program. I can talk you through the arrangements for your therapy sessions and will ensure you are happy with them before going ahead.

Social media

Like most people I am active on different social networking sites. I would prefer that our relationship remains a professional one and one that operates within our agreed online boundaries. I will not respond to any friend requests on social networking sites such as LinkedIn and Facebook. Due to the nature of these sites, there is a possibility that our paths may cross accidentally. Should this arise, we will discuss this further.

Google (and other search engines)

I will not make a Google search of any clients before meeting them, and I do not use the internet to elicit information unless it is appropriate and with the explicit permission of a client. It is, of course, usual for you to have used Google to find a therapist and in doing so you may find other information about me online, and via my website. If this raises any questions for you, please let me know so we can discuss them.

Should you have any questions about this policy, please let me know.

With thanks to Dr Aaron Balick for his assistance and sharing of information in connection with this policy. http://www.aaronbalick.com/

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