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Therapy via video-conferencing: What is Technology Assisted Services (TAS)?

This service is referred to in many ways, e.g., telehealth, teletherapy, tele-mental health, virtual therapy, and technology-assisted services (TAS).  The reality is that we have already been using TAS by the letter of the law, as Texas deems TAS to be everything from phone calls to texts to therapy via video conferencing.  During this global crisis we are simply expanding what we have been doing to rapidly include therapy via teleconferencing. So, TAS is becoming the term for clients continuing with therapy, from a distance.  There are many reasons a client may opt for accessing their care via TAS. For some it is a convenience, for some it has been a necessity. Fortunately for our clients, Dr. White and Associates, P.C. (DWA), has shifted to serving the needs of our community, and Texas as a whole, via TAS.

Why not just use Skype or FaceTime?

The Texas State Board of Examiners of Marriage and Family Therapists have established rules for providing TAS to protect your confidentiality and to promote ethical delivery of services.  The audio/video platforms we use meet the highest standards of protecting the confidentiality/privacy of your information. Some [platforms do not provide the required level of privacy

How does TAS work?

The short answer is all technology used to communicate with your therapist including, email, text, phone call, and video conferencing is TAS.  DWA relies on RingCentral for our telephone needs. They offer an encrypted service, ensuring the security of your information, whether through telephonic or video conferencing communication.  TAS in terms of therapy sessions looks very similar to Skype, FaceTime, Google Meet, or Duo, but is far more secure in terms of your information only being available to yourself and your therapist and not nearly as vulnerable in transmission.  

Informed Consent

In order to serve you in this way, we need you to read and sign our TAS Informed Consent document.  We will share it with you through your scheduling portal account. Please download it, read it, fill it out, “save as” and rename “finished DWA TAS Intake Addendum 4.2.20”, upload, and digitally sign.  It is important that you do not click that you physically signed the document unless you print it, physically fill it out, scan it, and upload it.

The way it works for Windows users: 

You will receive an email indicating your scheduled appointment time, it will look like this:

Therapy via Video Conferencing Step 1 | Technology Assisted Services (TAS) | Dr. White and Associates, P.C. in Lubbock, Texas

Open it up.

Therapy via Video Conferencing Step 2 | Technology Assisted Services (TAS) | Dr. White and Associates, P.C. in Lubbock, Texas

And scroll down to find the Join link.  Click it.

Therapy via Video Conferencing Step 3 | Technology Assisted Services (TAS) | Dr. White and Associates, P.C. in Lubbock, Texas

When you click the link that will take you to a download page.  Some browsers will automatically launch some won’t.

Therapy via Video Conferencing Step 4 | Technology Assisted Services (TAS) | Dr. White and Associates, P.C. in Lubbock, Texas

In that case, click download and run.  Then click the executable file in the bottom left corner.

Therapy via Video Conferencing Step 5 | Technology Assisted Services (TAS) | Dr. White and Associates, P.C. in Lubbock, Texas

Once the file begins to execute, RingCentral should begin to launch on its own.

Therapy via Video Conferencing Step 6 | Technology Assisted Services (TAS) | Dr. White and Associates, P.C. in Lubbock, Texas

Once RC launches, click join with Computer audio.

Therapy via Video Conferencing Step 7 | Technology Assisted Services (TAS) | Dr. White and Associates, P.C. in Lubbock, Texas

At the bottom left there are audio and visual controls.

Therapy via Video Conferencing Step 8 | Technology Assisted Services (TAS) | Dr. White and Associates, P.C. in Lubbock, Texas

And that’s that!

Finally, for following sessions, there should simply be a popup that allows you to join using the previously downloaded application.

Therapy via Video Conferencing Step 9 | Technology Assisted Services (TAS) | Dr. White and Associates, P.C. in Lubbock, Texas