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Best practice guide

Telehealth for behavioral health care
For providers Best practice guides Telehealth for behavioral health care Preparing patients for telebehavioral health

Obtaining informed consent for telebehavioral health

You may be required to get your patient’s official informed consent when they make a telehealth appointment. Patients can give informed consent through signed paperwork, completed before the appointment and/or through verbal consent, taken at the beginning of each session.

Informed consent laws — and the minimum age for consent — also vary by state.

Here are a few basic steps for informed consent:

  • Explain what the patient can expect from the telehealth visit — including potential risks.
  • Explain their rights as a patient.
  • Explain to minors what information may be shared with parents or guardians.
  • Check-in with the patient about their responsibilities during a telebehavioral health visit. Include specific steps like wearing headphones and finding a place to be alone during the visit to ensure privacy.
  • Ensure that all compliance documentation, including required informed consent, has been delivered, and document verbal consent during check-in.

Tip: Make sure to have your medical and intake forms reviewed by your legal team.

More about informed consent:

Last updated: July 2, 2021

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