GVDC provides telehealth telephone or video consultations when these are more convenient due to distance/circumstances and/or to avoid close contact during the current COVID19 pandemic. Standard principles of privacy, confidentiality, management of private information, fees and cancellation fees apply.
Our clinicians choose and use their preferred platform(s): eg Zoom, Skype, Coviu, Webex, etc. We will inform you in advance so you can be prepared.
Privacy & Security
As per standard policies and procedures, your private information will be treated with respect and confidentiality. We will not record telehealth consultations, nor share materials from the telehealth consultations without your consent.
Telehealth services involve using interactive cloud-based systems that involve sharing of audio, video or other data communication online (outside of our practice). Our practitioners make a commitment that we will undertake these consultations in a private setting where others cannot hear or see your information.
We recommend that you also find a private setting where you feel comfortable and safe, and where you will not be interrupted for the duration of the consultation. It is important that you protect your own information. If you are not able to find a private and secure location, let your clinician know so that alternative arrangements can be made.
Our default practice will be unrecorded sessions. If assessments and/or consultations need to be recorded for clinical reasons, you will be advised and your informed consent will be obtained via a separate process. Conversely, our expectation is that consultations are not recorded at your end either, without the knowledge and informed consent of the clinician(s) involved.
We will need to use your preferred email address and/or preferred telephone number for telehealth consultations.
For video consultations, we will email you a meeting invitation with a link and password.
You can decide and choose what name and details you provide at your end, however please let us know in advance if you choose not to use your real name as we will need to identify you when you connect.
When you do connect, our clinician will ask you to identify yourself with your full name and date of birth to ensure no unauthorised access.
For telephone consultations, our clinician will call you at the beginning of the scheduled consultation.
We will make two attempts to connect with you. Our admin team will also be there to assist you with the connections if it is your first time using the platform (eg Zoom). However, please ask your family or others for assistance in becoming comfortable using the technology to minimise the chance of issues due to settings at your end. If we are unable to reach you after two attempts, we will consider the consultations unattended. Non-attendance fees will apply.
Please minimize distractions during your telehealth consultation. This may include not playing games, not checking or sending messages, etc. Please treat your telehealth consultation as your usual face to face sessions - we will do so, as well.
In the event that your clinician becomes concerned about your safety and/or the safety of others, the standard limits to confidentiality apply – see previous section.
Data Usage, Hardware & Software
Please check that you have enough data to undertake the telehealth video or telephone consultations. GVDC will not cover the cost of the data-usage for these calls and cannot take responsibility of any disruptions due to poor internet speeds, etc. We will make all reasonable efforts to make sure we use reliable internet connections when undertaking our sessions.
Ensure you have the latest update for your web browser, whether you are using Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Safari or something else. Telehealth will work on the browsers of Android and iOS devices as well as computers and laptops.
Ensure you have the basic hardware requirements of a video consultation. These include a good quality camera, microphone and speaker. Most modern desktop computers and laptops come with these three elements built-in. Best type of speakers for clearer sound is external speakers or ear pods/headsets with inbuilt microphone.
Limitations of Telehealth
A telehealth consultation may be subject to limitations such as an unstable network connection which may affect the quality of the consultation. In addition, there may be some services for which telehealth is not appropriate or not effective. Your clinician will consider and discuss with you the appropriateness of ongoing telehealth sessions.
If during a session, your communication medium experiences an interruption, for example a connection drop out, or poor quality video or audio, your treating practitioner will contact you on your mobile to discuss how and if the session can be continued to its entirety.