3 Must-Haves for Your Online Counseling Platform

In 2015, Anthem Health became responsible for the largest healthcare breach in history when sensitive data from 79 million people was stolen. The breach included personal and financial information from customers of Blue Cross Blue Shield, Caremore, Amerigroup, and other major healthcare organizations.

Whether you have 80 million clients or 8, can you imagine revealing that you’ve compromised the information to the people that trust you the most? The need for more secure and confidential healthcare platforms prompted the creation of Meta, a secure, HIPAA compliant online counseling service that connects providers to college students.

Meta was designed with the three most important features of a mental health platform: HIPAA compliance, affordability, and ease of use.

HIPAA Compliance

Anthem Healthcare lost $115 million in the settlement from their breach, and it will cost you between $100 and $50,000 for a single HIPAA violation, depending on the level of negligence. HIPAA compliant software protects you from violations that can stifle your career and protect your clients’ sensitive information from being exposed.

Without HIPAA compliance, you’ll be exposed to:

• Client information being stolen

• Phone and video calls being recorded and shared

• Client medical history being stolen and held for ransom

In such a litigious society, put yourself in your clients’ shoes and think about what you would do if your therapist told you that your information was compromised. Would you sue? Would you trust or continue to work with that doctor?

Affordability

Starting a private practice and/or moving some or all of your practice online can be overwhelming. On top of working with clients, you have to become an expert in marketing, sales, online security, technology and all of the rules and regulations that support and hinder telehealth practices.

Wondering what that looks like if you’re doing it all alone? Here’s a breakdown of monthly costs:

Website $30 – $100
SEO Firm for Website $200 – $500
Social Media Ads $100 – $200
Directory Listings $50 – $60
HIPAA Compliant Video-Only System $40 – $100
Secure Payment System $25 – $60

That’s a total of $420-$1,020 per month to attract, service, and receive payments, and doesn’t include the time you have to commit to managing each process. This can be a tough decision if you’re thinking about switching from your “brick and mortar” practice to an online presence to save money.

Meta makes it easy to practice both in-person and online. You can now afford to keep your traditional practice and use Meta to supplement your clientele, or use Meta as your primary method for counseling and work from home. You can also use Meta to attract new business into your physical office.

Ease Of Use

Dr. Lauren Somers, Meta’s Director of Mental Health, has firsthand experience with working with a “complex” system:

“Early on I stumbled onto one of the first video platforms to market and while the up-time was generally more than the down-time – the product was a beast to navigate.

If my client and I were not accessing it from the same type of device (laptop vs phone) our session wouldn’t start, if we weren’t using the same operating system on those devices (iOS vs Android) the session wouldn’t connect, and if we didn’t log onto the session in specific order (me first) we would be logged into two different sessions.

That specific product costs $100 per month and I could never reach technial support when I needed them.”

The feature that should take priority over all others is consistently connecting you and your clients through a simple and secure platform. Both you and your client should always know where to go and when – regardless of the device or operating system. And if you run into an issue, reaching support shouldn’t be a hassle.

Meta actually built two integrated products with ease of use in mind: a mobile application built with the traditional college student’s user experience in mind and an online provider website targeted at mental health providers.

Then Meta connected the two experiences through HIPAA compliant communication interfaces. Students can download the app for free and have access to a network of licensed professionals.

Mental health providers don’t have to worry about doing any marketing since Meta matches your specialties to prospective clients’ needs. Meta also makes payments easy, whether or not you choose to work with insurance. Students send payments directly to the provider, all within the application.

Try Meta free for 90 days to experience the future of mental health services.

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