Even though people experiencing mental health issues were on the rise prior to COVID-19, the circumstances surrounding the virus have caused a significant leap in those feeling the effects on their mental health.
As of the last U.S. unemployment report, over 30 million Americans have lost their jobs in the last 6 weeks. And it’s not letting up. Many experts believe the unemployment rate will top 20% this year.
When you add in the fear of contracting the virus, along with stay-at-home and social distancing mandates, you get a recipe for a mental health tsunami.
Mental health practitioners are very aware of this. They know their role in society is more important than ever. But most of them operate in-person practices. So what are these legions of therapists, psychiatrists, psychologists, and counselors to do?
Many are turning to technology to keep their practices open and to keep serving their patients. Through a simple combination of virtual meeting tools and HIPAA-compliant appointment scheduling software, they’ve been able to quickly adapt to going 100% online.
Bob La Loggia, CEO of AppointmentPlus, said, “We’ve always served the mental health community. But, as a result of the pandemic, we’ve seen a large influx of interest from therapists, psychologists, psychiatrists, and others in the field. They need an online scheduling system and they need it fast. Their patients are depending on them. We’re thankful that we have the technology and the manpower to get their accounts up and running in a very short amount of time.”
By utilizing appointment scheduling software, these mental health practitioners are able to spend more of their time with patients and less of their time dealing with setting, changing, and canceling appointments.
One therapist noted, “I’ve saved at least an hour every day by moving to AppointmentPlus. I knew that scheduling was time-consuming, but I didn’t realize how much time I was actually spending on it.”
AppointmentPlus also allows these professionals to easily run appointment reports on individuals or for their entire practice. This allows them to quickly see how many sessions were completed or canceled for a given time period. The system also sends out HIPAA-compliant email and text appointment reminders.