Tell us about yourself and Ginger Cat Counselling!
I benefited hugely from online counselling during the pandemic, so when I was ready to set up my own practice, it was an easy decision for me to make.
I created a queer-friendly, cozy, supportive corner of the internet where we don't take ourselves too seriously. Our branding is bright, friendly and based around ginger cats, who are not known for being particularly smart but are certainly very affectionate.
I am passionate about supporting teenagers and adults, especially those who deal with the impacts of trauma, who don’t feel good in the boxes society tries to fit us into, who are trying to make the world a better place or are simply struggling to cope with events beyond our control.
I am very proud that creating a defined niche and branding has quickly resulted in clients that I really enjoy working with.
What’s your experience with telehealth been like to date? How has this changed since the outbreak of Coronavirus?
I have positive associations with telehealth as a user. I did in-person counselling before the pandemic but shifted effortlessly.
My practitioners didn't move quite as gracefully, and things were sometimes clunky. This meant that when I wanted to set up my own practice I wanted to be sure it was seamless, clear, as skip-free as possible, and a value add for my clients.
What are the benefits of using telehealth for your patients?
I haven't spoken directly about the benefits of telehealth with my clients, but I can imagine that they have the same experience as me - being able to do counselling in my pyjamas is a huge benefit, and ensured I actually showed up for my appointments.
It has obvious benefits for those with anxiety and depression and means you can have your pet, plants and a favourite mug of tea close by while having counselling.
How has providing telehealth helped your business?
I run an online business. I could do it with a less expensive product, but it's very important to me that my clients feel from the first moment that I'm taking things seriously and am creating a safe, undisturbed place for them.
What tips do you have for other practitioners providing telehealth?
Know the technology inside and out. It's like understanding how the chair that your client is sitting in works. If you are relaxed and effortless, the client will feel relaxed.
How do you market your telehealth services to new and existing patients?
Word of mouth (personal/professional network, current clients), online counselling sites, particularly the St Kilda Pride Centre and Psychology Today and Instagram.
What are your visions for the future of telehealth?
I feel like telehealth has advantages in regards to access that we haven't begun to touch yet.
Story originally posted here. Read more Telehealth success stories from our digital solutions partner, Coviu.