To review our 6-HOUR, 100% ONLINE course for telemental health and addresses each and every requirement by the Georgia Board, click here. It is immediately available online using your computer or mobile device — all from the comfort of your home or office.

In an unprecedented move, after two years of careful deliberations and notification, the Georgia Composite Board for the state’s Counselors, Social Workers and Marriage and Family Therapists voted to pass their Telemental Health rule 153-11-01 on September 11, 2015. It will impact both clinicians and supervisors in the state by its effective date, which was October 1, 2015. As we outlined in a previous Telebehavioral Health Institute (TBHI) article entitled, Georgia’s “Composite Board” Sets the Bar with Proposed Rule for TeleMental Health Practice, this rule is the first of its kind in the United States, in that it:

  • defines telemental health with respect to the modalities involved
  • requires 6 hours of training for all clinicians using any form of technology to conduct any form of contact with clients/patients (and 6 basic plus 3 additional telesupervision hours for supervisors), and
  • stipulates training topics (otherwise known as “competency” areas)

Service delivery modalities (technologies) included in Georgia’s definition of telemental health will officially include:

  • Telephone
  • Video
  • Internet
  • Smartphone
  • Tablet
  • PC Desktop
  • Other electronic means

Basic professional training requirements for clinicians include a minimum of 6 CEs in the following areas:

  • Research in telemental health
  • Intake and assessment for telemental health
  • Delivery methods, theory integration for telemental health
  • Termination for telemental health
  • Risk management for telemental health
  • Business of telemental health
  • Internet use dependency and psychological problems

Supervisors are required to have an additional 3 hours of training, in addition to the above 6 hours. (TBHI has been developing such a CE course – 100% online. It will have NBCC and APA-approved CE hours, and will be released next week. Our target date is Monday, October 6 – maybe sooner. Pre-sales are available now.)

Telemental Health Commentary

We at TBHI applaud Georgia’s Composite Board for its bold leadership. For more than 20 years, thousands of licensed professionals have been working online without even the most basic of professional education about the scientific evidence base related to telemental health. The field has long needed courageous regulators to take a stand — and set the bar with required training. Georgia has now done that!

Telebehavioral Health Institute Professional Training

TBHI offers 100% ONLINE with our training (to access via your desktop, laptop or tablet mobile device). TBHI courses are available immediately and come with NBCC  and APA-approved CE hours.  We are making revisions to be compliant with Georgia’s addition of  Internet use dependency and psychological problems to our basic 6-hour course as we speak, so you can buy now and take the training by this weekend. Our telesupervision course is now being pre-sold. We expect to have it ready for our beta-testers by mid week next week. And yes, you can get CE credit for beta-testing….
Georgia Passes New Telemental Health Licensure Rule

Are Speakers from TBHI Available for In-Person Training?
Yes, anytime. In fact, the Georgia Psychological Association hired me for their keynote, a full day best practices training and  another half day course for legal and ethical business course for online promotion through websites, blogs, books, ebooks,  APPs, etc.  They sold out the event….
Please see my bio here and my speaking schedule here. You may want to note that I have written two of the leading textbooks in the field and two more are at the publisher’s now. Get your training from the leaders in telemental health. You’ll be amazed at how much MORE you will learn in our online training than in a full day training workshop. Ask your Georgia colleagues who have trained with us. They will tell you how much they learned….)

We also invite comments from you at any time, and especially now.

What does this Georgia ruling mean to you? What do you see as its strengths or weaknesses?