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TELEHEALTH for the Mental Health Professions: Constructive and Evidence-Based Tips for Practicing Safely, Efficiently, and Legally
Susan C. Litton, PhD
Professional Resource Press / Softcover / Jul 2021
9781568872315 (ISBN-10: 1568872313)
Telemental Health
price: $43.95
86 pages
In Stock (Ships within one business day)

This outstanding resource will help you learn about the concepts of using technology in mental health. The author, Susan Litton, is a practicing psychologist and IT professional, and is able to convince you that using video and other technology is not quite as difficult or unsafe as you might have thought. Litton demonstrates the things that can truly be problematic and teaches you how to avoid them. When you finish this book, you should be able to display not only expertise in your virtual presence, but also competence in the standards and care of telehealth as it applies to your profession, including, but not limited to, topics such as:

• Security and transmission of digital data and information
• Telehealth standards of care
• Informed consent requirements for telehealth
• Interjurisdictional practice issues (primarily within the U.S. but touching on issues in other countries)
• Confidentiality as it applies to telehealth
• Issues around disposal of data and information
• Performing assessments with telehealth
• Diversity issues in telehealth

Once you understand the concepts, you’ll be able to make wise choices for using technology in your practice with whatever new thing comes along. Also, there is a focus on solutions, not just abstract concepts, and the reader will walk away with action-oriented plans you can begin to implement right away.


"Stop worrying! Susan has done your homework for you! If you feel overwhelmed by HIPAA and rules and regulations and software and hardware – relax. Help is here. Susan has figured these things out. Don’t worry. Be happy. Keep it simple. Just do what Susan recommends.... What a relief!"
-David Woodsfellow, PhD, The Woodsfellow Institute for Couples Therapy, Atlanta, GA

"With a foundation of training and experience in clinical psychology and information technology, Dr. Litton provides a concise and comprehensive guide to the complex technical and regulatory requirements related to telehealth. Written in a refreshingly readable style, this innovative resource is a telehealth instructional manual that is densely packed with practical solutions."
-William F. Doverspike, PhD, ABPP, Adjunct Professor, Clinical Psychology Doctoral Training Program, Emory University

"What are often called 'tips' are expertise in tiny bundles. Susan Litton’s new book is just such a collection. . . . [Her] book is a solid introduction to telehealth and reading it will reduce any anxiety and guide any clinician to enter and explore using telehealth in their practice."
-Edward L. Zuckerman, PhD, co-author of The Paper Office for the Digital Age (5th ed.)

Table of Contents:

What Exactly is Telehealth?
HIPAA Compliance
HIPAA-Compliant Software?
Business Associate Agreements (BAA)
What is a Business Associate?
Why Bother?
You Might Want to Read Your BAAs
Telehealth: Video
Do I Really Need HIPAA-Compliant Video
Types of Video Software
Native Apps
Best Practices for Achieving Good Quality Video Sessions
User-Friendly vs. Safe
Other Considerations When Choosing a Video Product
Video Software Summary
Your Virtual Presence
Lighting, Lighting, Lighting!
Virtual Backgrounds
Practice Management Software
Online vs. Desktop
What is Cloud/Online Computing?
Advantages of Online Applications
Advantages of Desktop Applications
Safety of Online Applications
Setting Up a Telehealth Office
Your Equipment
Presession Considerations
The Session
Postsession Tasks
Online File Storage
Notes and Dictation
EHRs and Portals
A Backward Look: Meaningful Use
ONC Health IT Certified EHRs vs. Non-ONC Certified EHRs
So . . . What is an EHR Really?
The ONC’s Cures Act Rule, aka “OpenNotes”
Some Hopeful New Directions
A Deeper Dive into Non-ONC Certified Behavioral Health EHRs
The State HIE Cooperative Agreement Program
Insurance and Billing
Legal and Ethical Issues
Risk Management
Telehealth Informed Consent
Originating Sites and Interjurisdictional Practice Issues
Performing Assessments With Telehealth
Diversity Issues in Telehealth
General Ethical Issues
Resolving/Reporting Ethical Violations
Retention of Records
Recording Video (or Phone) Sessions
Interruption of Services
Security and Transmission of Data
Implementing HIPAA
State and Local Laws
The HIPAA Privacy Rule
The HIPAA Security Rule

CE Program

A supplemental 3-credit, 27 question continuing education program is available for this book. To order the complete program (this book and CE test module, or test module alone if you already have access to this book), go to: TELEHEALTH for the Mental Health Professions: Constructive and Evidence-Based Tips for Practicing Safely, Efficiently, and Legally - CE Program (3 Credits/Hours)

For information about our approved continuing education sponsorships and acceptance by state boards, please click here: Continuing Education

About the Author

Susan C. Litton, PhD, BFA, holds degrees in both mental health and IT and is actively engaged with careers in both. In mental health, Dr. Litton has been a clinical psychologist in private practice in Atlanta, Georgia, since 1985. In IT, she is the creator and driving force behind PSYBooks (, an online practice management system and portal for mental health professionals and their patients.

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