During this Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, telepractice is becoming more popular as a service delivery model for speech-language pathologists (SLPs). In an effort to continue to provide quality services to their clients, many SLPs are eager to start providing services via telepractice. I understand that switching to a telepractice model can seem daunting when you are just getting started. So I decided to present a live webinar yesterday where SLPs could ask their burning questions about how to get started in telepractice. I gathered questions from attendees in advance so I could be prepared to answer the top recurring questions. As I was reviewing the list of questions, I noticed that some themes were beginning to emerge. I was able to group the questions into the following categories:

  1. Technology
  2. Materials
  3. Marketing
  4. Billing
  5. Where to begin

Questions ranged from general, such as “Where do I begin?” to more specific questions like, “What place of service code should I use when billing insurance?” If you missed the live webinar, I have made the free replay available on my website, Telepractice Training for SLPs. I used the last ten minutes of the webinar to answer live questions from the participants. Due to time constraints, I was unable to answer every question. However, in light of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and the urgent need to provide online speech therapy, I am committed to continuing to be a source of information for SLPs who are interested in learning more about this service delivery model.

ASHA’s Code of Ethics and many state telepractice regulations require that services delivered via telepractice are equivalent to the standard of care of in-person services. Therefore, I want everyone to have the knowledge, skills, and proper training to be able to provide the best quality care. To do my part, I am going to be writing weekly blog posts to continue to answer some of those top questions that I’ve been receiving about providing speech and language services via telepractice. In this first blog, I will be addressing one of the questions that I was unable to answer yesterday. And that is, “What does a typical telepractice session look like?”

I am providing a one-minute demo clip for you to see an example of the technology and materials that can be used in telepractice. Scroll down to the end of this post for the link. In this clip, both the clinician (me) and demo client are using the following technology:

  1. Laptop computer (Mac and PC)
  2. Headset with boom mic, and
  3. Webcam

The videoconferencing platform that I am using in this demo is Zoom, and I am sharing my screen. In this activity from ABCYa.com, I am controlling the mouse to encourage expressive language. However, it is possible to have the client control the mouse, depending on their goals and ability level.

If you are interested in getting started with telepractice right away, please consider my online course, the Ultimate Telepractice Training for Beginners. This course is usually designed to take four weeks to complete. However, I am unlocking all of the course content the day you enroll so you can get up and running with your own telepractice ASAP! If you do not need the full course, you may want to just purchase Materials in Telepractice, which includes over an hour of video demonstrations that show you how to make your sessions interactive and engaging. Furthermore, if you are interested in a free 15-minute phone consultation with me, email me at [email protected] or call (732) 844-3525. I look forward to helping you continue to provide quality services to your clients during these trying and uncertain times. Stay safe!