COVID-19

Updated : 02/11/2020

As restrictions ease in Melbourne, based on the guidelines by the DHHS for psychological counselling, we continue to use Telehealth as the preferred mode of service delivery.

We understand that you might have some reservations about using telehealth. We have been using this for 8 months and it works well. By using video conferencing, you can see see and hear your therapist just like you would in a face-to-face session.  People often like that they can do it from home, and they feel more relaxed there.

Our practitioners are willing to consider face-to-face counselling for clients if deemed essential and not equally achievable via tele-health sessions. When choosing face-to-face, our practice will employ Strict COVID-19 safe measures to ensure the safety and health of our staff and clients.

Precautions implemented if  face-to-face counseling deemed critical:

At EHC we are mindful of your concerns regarding Covid-19 and committed to your health and safety.

We would like to share our precautionary COVID-19 measures to protect you, your family, other clients, and our EHC team.

Please opt for a video or phone consultation 

  1. IF you have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or in direct contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19.
  2. IF you have travelled overseas in the last 2 weeks from your return date.
  3. IF you have  experienced any of the following symptoms in the last 2-weeks:
      • Fever
      • Flu-like symptoms such as coughing, sore throat and fatigue.
      • Shortness of breath

Online and phone-based sessions:

Many people opt for online or phone based sessions to ensure continuity of support / commence treatment with practitioner of their choice.

Face-to-face sessions can be provided from the comfort of your home or office to ensure safe distancing and reduce the spread of COVID-19 with our online treatment support.

What precautions have we implemented?

      • Alcohol based hand sanitizer is available in our waiting area and in therapy rooms.
      • Handwash/soap is available in all bathrooms.
      • We wash our hands thoroughly between each appointment and will refrain from shaking hands.
      • High frequency touch areas such as door handles are cleaned between each session.
      • Tissues and/ or paper towels are available in our waiting area and in therapy rooms.

What implications are there in terms of privacy relating to COVID-19?

In the event that our staff or any of our clients or visitors contract Covid-19, we may be required to disclose names and contact details of people we have been in contact with to The Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC), as well as the nature of our contact. We will protect your privacy in as much as is possible, whilst giving necessary information.

Our commitment to you

  1. We will take precautions and regularly review our health and safety procedures in order to protect our practitioners and clients.
  2. In the event that someone on staff at EHC contracts Covid-19, they will self-isolate until confirmed clear of the virus and offer all sessions online or over the phone, if  well enough.
  3. In the event that a client or colleague we have had contact with contracts Covid-19, we will advise you, via email or phone and discuss whether in person or online sessions would be appropriate for you.

Our requests:

      • We request that you wash your hands thoroughly upon arrival at our clinic.
      • We request that you do not visit the clinic for at least 14 days if you have returned from overseas (as mandated in Australia) even if you do not have any symptoms.  Instead, organise a video session to allow us to continue continuity of care.
      • We request that you do not attend your appointment face to face, if you are unwell with any cold, cough or ‘flu like symptoms. If you do attend with any such symptoms, you may be asked to return home.  Please instead organise a video or phone session.
      • If you are experiencing mild symptoms but would like to still attend, we will use reasonable efforts to offer the appointment online. We will ask you to complete an Online Therapy Contract if you have not already.

The following Session Fee Policy continues to apply:

Session Fee Policy

As per our standard Session Fee Policy, we ask that you make every arrangement to be able to attend scheduled session. If you are unable to attend session in person for whatever reason, we will accommodate your session via video or phone.  Regardless if you choose to attend your scheduled sessions, you will be responsible for the session fee.

If your practitioner is unable to attend the session for any reason, we will advise you by email or phone at the earliest opportunity. While our practitioners are not immune to contracting Covid-19, we will still be able to offer our services via phone and video, unless unwell.

The only exception to this policy will be a documented medical certificate stating you are in fact diagnosed with Covid-19.

We are here to help you move through your client journey and will continue business as usual, as much as possible.  If this means we need to move our sessions from face-to-face to video for a period of time, we are prepared to do so.

Further Resources

National Health Service Information

For People who have travelled recently or plan to travel

For those who return from high risk areas

For those who are required to self isolate

Australian Government Department of Health

A final word…

We here to support you and will try to be flexible wherever possible. If you are not concerned, we need not take time in your session time to process the situation. Likewise, if you are experience increasing concern, we can spend time focusing on strategies to support you.

If you have any questions or would like to discuss further, please contact our Administration Support or discuss in your next session.

Best wishes,

The Team at Emotional Health Centre