Once again, Ohio psychologists lead the pack for not only telepsychology, but for all of telemental health as well. Specific and new skill sets are needed for any form of telehealth practice, especially for some of the “softer” types of practice, such as those prevalent in mental health. Far too many practitioners assume that working online is a snap, or that it is the same as working in a traditional office setting.
The Ohio Psychological Association (OHA) started addressing this need for detailed telepsychology competencies in 2012. Their Communications and Technology Committee has now released developing a document entitled, Areas of Competence for Psychologists in Telepsychology.
Based on previous work related to telepsychology guidelines, published by Ohio’s regulatory board for psychology in 2008, and subsequently revised in 2010, psychologists in Ohio are once again showing themselves to be leaders in telemental health. Their well considered list of competencies is also based on telepsychology guidelines recently approved by the American Psychological Association.
These competencies have now been posted for comment. They can be used for training organizations (such as ours, where they are were all included years ago), regulatory boards, as well as researchers, educators, practitioners and policymakers. Committee members are seeking comments, thoughts, and suggestions until November 6, 2013.
These Ohio-based colleagues deserve to be applauded for their pioneering efforts, and if you have a few moments, you’ll more than likely see that the list of suggested competencies our easy-to-read, succinct, and cover many needed issues. Please review and send your comments by writing to Dr. Marc. B. Dielman.