Online (virtual) counselling has emerged as a response to a need that people have been expressing: Almost everything these days can be done through our phone or our computer, so why not health services as well? It can be a huge hassle to book appointments and spend a significant amount of time travelling to them. Often, we can’t find the time, within all of our competing work and other personal demands. This frequently means we put off booking important appointments because we can’t seem to find the time in our schedule.
Who is online (virtual) counselling for?
Virtual counselling is a unique service that allows people to access regular counselling services from the comfort of their own home. Virtual counselling increases the level of accessibility for clients and Dr. Joti Samra, R.Psych. & Associates is proud to be able to offer these services with the same level of care as would be expected from in-office appointments.
Virtual counselling, however, is not just for people with busy schedules who struggle to make in-office appointments. Online (virtual) counselling is for people who:
- Live in rural areas of BC who may not have easy access to in-person counselling services, or do not have access to reliable transportation.
- Have disabilities or physical limitations who struggle to make the commute into an office.
- Experience financial constraints who are looking to save the cost of commute time or the requirement of taking time off work to attend in-person sessions.
- Are juggling the responsibilities of work and raising a family or are attempting to coordinate sessions with their partner, or those who are single parents.
- Are looking for a faster referral process, decreased wait times, and greater appointment flexibility (evenings, weekends)
Want their preferred choice of clinician, without limiting that on considerations related to where they or the clinician lives.
What are the benefits of online (virtual) counselling?
Of course the main, and most obvious, benefit is the convenience. We save both time and money. We are not required to spend time on hold or call during office hours to make an appointment. We do not have to spend any extra time or cost travelling to a physical location and are less likely to be required to take time off work to attend appointments. And of course, we are able to do therapy from wherever we are able to get access to a computer and an internet connection. That even means we can have an appointment in our pyjamas if we would like to!
Reduced wait times, broader options for appointment times (including evenings and weekends), and increased access to the counsellor of your choice are all additional benefits of online (virtual) counselling. Not having to force your choice of therapist (which is a very important consideration in therapy) based on where you live is also a fantastic advantage – it allows you to select the therapist who would be the best fit for you, regardless of where you or they live. This is particularly attractive for individuals who live in smaller or more remote communities where options for counsellors are limited.
The specific nature of therapy itself (as opposed to other physical/medical treatments) is the added comfort of being able to have the appointment from the privacy and security of your own home. In therapy, it is common to discuss extremely emotional topics and people are often required to be vulnerable. For many, this is easier to do via video conference in comparison to an office setting that one is unfamiliar with. Being in your own home when a therapy session ends can also often facilitate a more conducive way to regroup and settle emotions post-therapy.
Online (virtual) counselling services also help to remove barriers for people. Not having to travel to a physical location is often a preferred choice for many people, particularly for those who:
- Live in more remote or rural locations
- Have physical limitations
- Do not have access to reliable transportation
- Are unable to take time off from work or work shift-work
- Have young children/are single parents
Are you ready to book your online (virtual) therapy session? If so, get it touch! We’re also happy to provide more information if you have any questions.
You’ve likely seen an explosion of ads for virtually-delivered health services. But are they as effective as in-person meetings?
Thanks to technology, we can now access a breadth of health services from the comfort of our home. Find out how virtual counselling is and how it can benefit you.