JUNE 18. 2020
Melissa J. Westendorf, J.D./Ph.D.
Forensic and Clinical Psychologist, Certified Clinical Telemental Health Provider
Technology Wellness Center
Dr. Melissa Westendorf is a licensed clinical psychologist who specializes in the psychological assessment of adults and adolescents. She is dedicated to helping clients identify the thoughts, feelings, and behaviors associated with their life’s struggles. She believes that all clients can make dramatic changes in their lives through hard work and dedication to a healthier lifestyle. Dr. Westendorf not only supports her clients through change, but also empowers them to continue making changes after therapy has finished.
In her practice, she has assessed multiple young adults faced with legal consequences for behavior that was driven in part by technology overuse, which began in adolescence. These legal cases prompted her to co-found the Technology Wellness Center with Dr. Strohman in order to provide tools and counseling to parents and children struggling with issues.
Wading into the Telehealth Pool: Providing Legal and Ethical Telemental Health Services
The onset of stay-at-home orders during the current global pandemic tossed mental health and substance use providers into the deep end of the telemental health pool. While reimbursement agencies have modified their policies to permit greater access and reimbursement for telehealth services, it is incumbent upon us, as therapists or evaluators, to provide services with the same level of security and confidentiality as in-person sessions. The ethical and legal obligations of our professions necessitate that we make wise choices, not only in who we provide telemental health services to, but in the delivery of those services, as well. This presentation will give a very broad overview of those ethical and legal obligations and permit providers to the delivery of those services, as well. This presentation will give a very broad overview of those ethical and legal obligations and permit providers to travel back to the shallow end of the telemental health pool and wade in more carefully.