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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ): COVID-19 Response

PRACTICUM & INTERNSHIP:

QUESTION:

Can a spring semester practicum or internship student finish their hours in the summer?

ANSWER:

Yes, if your hours are not completed by the end of the semester, you will receive an “IP” grade (in-progress) which can be converted to a final grade once all of the practicum and internship requirements are completed. There will be no charge for continued faculty supervision. In this case, the site supervisor would need to agree to continue with site supervision. If this is an option that you are considering, please consult with your site supervisor to determine the feasibility and availability of obtaining hours beyond the end of the semester, as your site supervisors will remain the person who signs off on your site hours each week.

Each student should develop, in collaboration with their site supervisor, a plan for how they will meet their indirect and direct hours for the spring 2020 Practicum or Internship requirements. We recognize this plan will be fluid and change throughout the semester as circumstances change. It should be based on the list of ideas included below and submitted on your course CANVAS page each week. Practicum/Internship instructors will review week-by-week as it is submitted on CANVAS, and additional ideas will be discussed through this review process. This plan should be a living document and should be revised as needed and resubmitted with each log submission.

Each of the items below may be considered for direct or indirect hours, pending prior approval of your site supervisor.

Approved for Indirect Hours

  • For School students: Jen Braverman’s Zoom Meetings
  • Advocacy initiatives; any advocacy initiatives planned for indirect hours should be pre-approved by the Internship instructor.

Approved for Direct Hours

  • School/SAC students: With permission from your site supervisor and hosting district, you are permitted to engage in online/tele-counseling services as long as your site supervisor is available for supervision (See APPENDIX A below).
  • Consultation with teachers to help them understand how student anxiety may present in the classroom
  • Reaching out to parents and offering consultation on how to integrate wellness activities into their at-home time and answer questions about anxiety, etc. (See APPENDIX B below: “School Counselors: Phone Calls to Student Caretakers” for details)
  • Career Counselors: Reviewing resumes through Zoom meetings with clients
  • Volunteer hours as approved by the Clinical Coordinator. This would require new site paperwork. This opportunity can only count for CMHC and MCFCT students as school/SAC students are required to complete the entirety of their internships in a school. If School/SAC students wish to volunteer and accrue hours outside of a school, those hours could count towards licensure (up to 1,500) but not towards Internship.
  • Students can create and provide or record lessons/workshops/professional development that students/clients/colleagues could view on-demand. Recorded lessons count only for direct for the duration of the recording. If the presentation is ‘live’ online, direct hours occur each time the presentation is given. Indirect hours can be accumulated for the development of the presentation.

 

QUESTION:

Is there any way that the Department could be flexible with the requirement of 50% relational hours for the MCFCT interns through CACREP? Licensing reg’s no longer require 50% to get licensure as long as all cases are supervised through a systems lens.

ANSWER:

In light of this unprecedented circumstance, our Department will allow flexibility with relational hours; however, we encourage MCFCT interns to gain as many relational hours as possible if such an opportunity is provided to them by the site; continuing to record hours as they have done so by separating hours by individual, group, couple, and family. In accruing more individual hours as opposed to relational hours, students and supervisors should work together to document how students are providing individual counseling through a systemic lens (e.g., use of genograms in assessing the client’s circumstances, using systems-based interventions, helping clients cope with relational issues). Students can record such activities without having to create a note for each individual client. For example, a student can write-up a one-page document describing types of systemic interventions and assessments that they have used with individual clients and attach it to their log sheets. The reasoning for the aforementioned documentation is so that students can demonstrate to the department and the licensing board (if necessary) that they have used systemic approaches to work with clients (including individual clients). This will also aid in the site supervisor’s ability to accurately complete the end of the semester evaluation form in its entirety (as much as possible): https://counselored.tcnj.edu/wp-content/uploads/sites/210/2012/02/SuperEvaluofCounsinMCFCT.pdf

 

QUESTION:

How should students obtain their supervisor’s signature on supervision logs and weekly logs when they are not permitted to see their supervisor’s in face-to-face supervision?

ANSWER:

Students can complete their logs each week and email them to site supervisors who can print, sign and take a phone pic of the signed log and return that to the student. If there is no printer available for site supervisors, they can do a pdf signature. If that is not an option, please have a weekly e-mail communication detailing the hours each week for your records. At the end of the semester you can turn in unsigned logs with the attached emails and the Clinical Coordinator will sign off on those approved hours.

 

QUESTION:

How should we move forward at our practicum/internship sites if and when they decide to move to remote counseling?

ANSWER:

Follow the lead of the schools/agencies — their policies and practices — and the guidelines provided below for telehealth/telemedicine (APPENDIX A).

 

QUESTION:

Are we able to provide remote counseling from a different state for those of us who may be quarantined outside of NJ?

ANSWER:

Follow the lead of the schools/agencies — their policies and practices — and the guidelines provided below for telehealth/telemedicine (APPENDIX A). If outside of NJ, the state laws of the state in which you are working would apply.

 

QUESTION:

What happens if students in practicum and internships are unable to obtain direct hours through video-conferencing and phone calls with students and/or clients?

ANSWER:

The Department of Counselor Education faculty would be willing to work with sites and site supervisors to initiate a telehealth/tele-counseling process with students/clients using a free, HIPAA-compliant telehealth service called “doxy.me,” and using the “Risk Management Considerations in Telehealth and Telemedicine” outlined below (APPENDIX A). It is important for students to be aware of key privacy concerns as they relate to online/tele counseling. If students plan to engage in this method of counseling, please first watch this ‘crash-course’  VIDEO prepared by a Counselor Educator specifically for students in Internship making this quick transition from face-to-face to online counseling. In the unfortunate event that your site will not move in this direction, students may need to seek out an additional/alternative site where direct hours can be completed.

 

QUESTION:

What do students do for recordings during Practicum and Internship?

ANSWER:

Role plays may be completed with individual supervisors using Zoom. This is not part of the requirement for direct hours; however, it will suffice for the completion of case presentations. For practicum students, you may role-play any remaining case recordings with your individual on-campus supervisor to meet the three recording requirements.

 

QUESTION:

If one site does not allow us to obtain direct hours (e.g., SAC school), can we obtain the remaining direct hours from the site that does allow us to obtain direct hours (e.g., school counseling site) even though we technically need SAC hours?

ANSWER:

Where there is overlap between school counselor and SAC functions, direct hours may be counted for either with the SAC site supervisor’s approval.

 

QUESTION:

What happens if students/families in the schools are not willing to phone conference or video-call with students?

ANSWER:

There will be some students and families who may turn down students’ offers of help.  This happens under normal circumstances as well. With the support of site supervisors, students can still reach out to parents and offer consultation on how to integrate wellness activities into their at-home time and answer questions about anxiety, etc. (See “School Counselors: Phone Calls to Student Caretakers”, APPENDIX B below.)

 

QUESTION:
If students receive an in-progress grade for internship class and make-up internship hours in the upcoming summer or fall semesters, will they have to pay anything additional in terms of tuition for the semester(s) where they will be making up internship hours?

ANSWER:

No. TCNJ faculty will support this process at no additional charge.

 

QUESTION:

Will TCNJ Counselor Education faculty (with input from CACREP) change internship requirements in order to accommodate students who may otherwise struggle to meet their direct client hours at their sites in order to graduate in May?

ANSWER:

CACREP has posted the following guidelines at cacrep.org, which the TCNJ Department of Counselor Education faculty must follow as a CACREP-accredited institution (downloaded on March 24th, 2020):

 

CACREP programs have been responsive to CACREP’s call to them last week to submit accommodations and modifications being put in place for their respective programs during the Covid-19 health crisis.

We reiterate our respect for the autonomy and prerogative of programs to provide accommodations for their students in extenuating circumstances. We recognize that every situation is unique and institutions have access to varying resources and have different capacities for specific types of accommodation. CACREP trusts that programs will do, professionally and ethically, what is best for them and their students. We are also mindful of the potential consequences for students in the long-term including credentialing, portability, and future employment.

It is an expectation that programs will continue to meet the CACREP standards, including the Professional Practice section of the Standards. Programs will have to be innovative, within reason, in how the Standards are met and CACREP will be flexible where it can.

It is important that the solutions developed are consistent with the CACREP Standards and Policies below.

CACREP STANDARDS:

3.G Practicum students complete at least 40 clock hours of direct service with actual clients that contributes to the development of counseling skills.

3.K  Internship students complete at least 240 clock hours of direct service.

Flexibility:             CACREP does not have any prohibitions against telemental health or distance supervision.
Programs using either one of these as alternative methods to meet curricular needs must ensure that students and site supervisors are trained to use this modality and that this modality is accepted by the respective state licensing board.
 
The use of role plays and simulations are not an appropriate substitute for direct hours.

 

3.J   After successful completion of the practicum, students complete 600 clock hours of supervised counseling internship in roles and settings with clients relevant to their specialty area.

Flexibility:             Students who are unable to complete practicum requirements at this time, upon return to normal practice may enroll in Internship in the same term. However, the student must successfully complete all practicum requirements prior to commencing with Internship.

For additional information, please review the cacrep.org COVID-19 response:

https://www.cacrep.org/for-programs/updates-on-covid-19/

QUESTION:

What happens if schools don’t reopen and we don’t achieve enough direct hours by the end of the spring 2020 semester? Will schools still be able to hire us in the Fall of 2020?

ANSWER:

Please contact the Clinical Coordinator if this is your situation; she will do all she can to try to help you connect with a school who is operating with tele/online counseling. If this is not possible, then you may have to wait for schools to reopen before you can begin to again accrue hours, and yes, this could affect your ability to obtain employment in September. A School Counselor Certificate is required for employment and all hours must be completed before you are eligible for certification. In rare circumstances, schools can apply for an emergency certification to hire someone before they complete their school counseling internship hours, but this is unlikely.

 

QUESTION:

A hypothetical situation: Schools are closed the remainder of the year and I am unable to meet my direct hours requirement by graduation. If there is no way for me to complete direct hours for the school counseling/SAC internships over the summer, does that mean I would have to keep interning through the upcoming fall semester? Would I not be able to graduate until December 2020?

ANSWER:

Unfortunately, this is possible. With the uncertainty right now, in terms of the course of the COVID-19 crisis, it is very difficult to determine. Some school districts do offer summer programs that might allow for counseling opportunities. If your district does not, please contact the Clinical Coordinator and she will try to assist in connecting you with a district that does.

_______________________________________

 

QUESTION:

In terms of finding a site for the Fall 2020 semester, should students continue to reach out to potential sites? 

ANSWER:

Yes. Even if you are told that the site is not accepting applications at this time, you will have made a connection with them. You can let them know that you will check back with them once the coronavirus situation has stabilized and schools/agencies are reopening.

 

QUESTION:

What if I can’t secure a site for the summer or fall semesters?

ANSWER:

We will do our best to assist students in securing a summer or fall practicum site. This is an unprecedented time and we simply do not know when programs will again be operating for direct human contact. Please stay in touch with the Clinical Coordinator and keep her posted as to your progress and areas of needed assistance.

 

QUESTION:
What if a site has already rescinded its offer of a site for the Fall 2020? Should I check back with them after the crisis has subsided?

ANSWER:

Yes. And you should begin searching for additional site opportunities as well.

 

QUESTION:

Will the deadline for submitting paperwork for practicum for the summer and fall be extended?

ANSWER:

We will work with students until they are able to secure sites for the summer and/or fall, the previous deadlines no longer apply, although students may not begin practicum at a site until it is approved by the Clinical Coordinator.

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TELETHERAPY:

 

QUESTION:
Are counseling interns allowed to engage in teletherapy (via video) with their clients at this time? If so, can we get direct hours for teletherapy sessions?

ANSWER:

 

SCHOOLS are allowed to provide tele-counseling as needed. This does count for direct hours.

 

CMHC/MCFCT: The College will recognize online/tele-counseling provided through your practicum/internship site during the period of the New Jersey State COVID-19 related health emergency IF your site and site supervisor authorize this continued clinical engagement AND you continue to receive individual supervision from your site supervisor. This does count for direct hours.

It is important for you to be aware of key privacy concerns as they relate to online/tele counseling. If you plan to engage in this method of counseling, please first watch this ‘crash-course’  VIDEO prepared by a Counselor Educator specifically for students in Internship making this quick transition from face-to-face to online counseling, as well as review APPENDIX A below, which details risk management and tele/online counseling. You also should discuss these changes in counseling format with your supervisor before providing any remote counseling services. With questions, you are welcome to reach out to Dr. Sandy Gibson, Clinical Coordinator at 215-932-0555.

___________________________________________________________

 

PORTUGAL:

 

QUESTION:

Are Portugal courses happening this summer? If they are canceled in Portugal, will there be a way to take classes this summer on campus or remotely instead?

ANSWER:

Portugal courses will be determined on April 17 and you will be notified shortly thereafter. Alternative formats for courses are currently being explored should in person classes in Portugal not be offered. Again, information about this will be shared by the end of April.

 

SUMMER COURSES

QUESTION:
Will on-campus summer courses will still be offered via online platforms if they are not able to meet in person at that time?

ANSWER:
Yes. All on-campus courses being offered this summer will move to an online format if the COVID-19 situation does not allow for face-to-face courses.

 

UNGRADED OPTION:

QUESTION:
Does the “ungraded” option apply to counselor education graduate students? If so, is it chosen by course or do you have to select it for all courses one is taking this term?

ANSWER:
This policy does apply to graduate counseling students — on a course by course basis. We do not recommend choosing this option because other state licensing boards may not permit pass/fall courses for licensure.

 

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APPENDIX A: “Risk Management Considerations in Telehealth and Telemedicine”

As the provision of healthcare services via technology—commonly called telehealth or telemedicine—expands during the current COVID-19 emergency period, questions arise regarding the permitted scope of practice, licensure requirements and compliance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), among other regulatory-based inquiries. It is important for healthcare practitioners to understand the risks unique to the practice of telehealth, as well as risk management best practices, including:

  • Verify authorization to legally practice telehealth.
  • Safeguard patient/client data and comply with privacy regulations and disclosure protocols.
  • Monitor outcomes for clinical care and technical support.
  • Create and retain formal patient/client care records for all encounters.
  • Engage in continuing education to ensure key competencies.

The information and regulatory guidance regarding COVID-19 is rapidly evolving and changing. The questions and responses below provide basic information to practitioners and are intended to serve as a catalyst for a practitioner’s further inquiry into the federal and state regulatory framework for telemedicine/telehealth. It is the responsibility of the qualified practitioner to know and meet the requirements necessary to provide telehealth services to their patients/clients.

What qualifies as telehealth?

Telehealth involves the use of electronic communications and information technology to deliver health-related services at a distance. The electronic communication must have audio and video capabilities that are used for two-way, real-time interactive communication. States have different laws concerning when and how telehealth may be practiced, so it’s important to check state statutes, regulations and policies, as well as state licensure boards regarding practice limitations before initiating services. In addition, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services provide information on the scope of Medicare telehealth services.

Who can provide care via telehealth?

It is essential to verify with relevant state professional licensing boards the practitioners (known as a ‘qualified provider’) who can legally provide telehealth services. Some states limit the types of providers that can provide services via telehealth. Practitioners must also be appropriately licensed/certified/credentialed to practice in the state where their patient/client is located, and work under that state’s scope of practice. Refer to professional associations, state and/or federal governments’ standards and requirements for more information. Depending on the state, authorized practitioners may include physicians, clinical nurse specialists, nurse practitioners, physician assistants and licensed counselors and therapists, among others.

Is it necessary to secure a license in both states when delivering telehealth across state lines?

Some states require practitioners who practice telehealth to be licensed in the state where the patient/client is located and abide by the licensure and practice requirements of that state. Before embarking on interstate telehealth, practitioners must review the state practice act of the state where the patient/client resides. If a state practice act is silent regarding telehealth or published opinions or interpretations regarding the subject of licensure have not been issued by recognized sources, then potential telehealth practitioners should contact their state professional licensing board for clarification with respect to interstate practice and their licensure status. Certain states and professions also have entered into interstate compacts, creating a new pathway to expedite the licensing of a practitioner seeking to practice in multiple states. For additional information, check the respective state licensing board to determine if the state has joined a compact.

What are the risks inherent to telehealth that patient/clients should be made aware of?

Patient/client consent is always required prior to participation in telehealth services. Practitioners often use existing consent and documentation processes for store-and-forward consultations. For more invasive procedures, a separate consent form is preferable, encompassing the following information:

  • Names, credentials, organizational affiliations and locations of the various health
                       professionals involved.
  • Name and description of the recommended procedure.
  • Potential benefits and risks.
  • Possible alternatives, including no treatment.
  • Contingency plans in the event of a problem during the procedure.
  • Circumstances under which the patient needs to see a healthcare professional for
    an in-person visit.
  • Explanation of how care is to be documented and accessed.
  • Security, privacy and confidentiality measures to be employed.
  • Names of those responsible for ongoing care.
  • Risks of declining the treatment/service.
  • Reiteration of the right to revoke consent or refuse treatment at any time.

In addition, clearly convey to the patient/client the inherent technical and operational hazards that may impede communication. These include:

  • Fiber-optic line damage, satellite system compromise or hardware failure, which
    could lead to incomplete or failed transmission.
  • File corruption during the transmission process, resulting in less than complete,
    clear or accurate reception of information or images.
  • Unauthorized third-party access, which may lead to data integrity problems.
  • Natural disasters, such as hurricanes, tornadoes and floods, which can potentially
    interrupt operations and compromise computer networks.

 

Prepare an emergency or contingency plan in case of technology breakdown, and be sure to communicate that information to the patient in advance of a telehealth encounter.

Should a special “Consent to Treat” form be utilized when performing telehealth?

Obtaining a patient’s/client’s consent to telehealth services is an essential step in the care process and is a recommended best practice of the American Telemedicine Association. A general consent-to-treat form lacks specificity regarding the potential benefits, constraints and risks unique to telehealth, including equipment failures and privacy and security breaches. In addition, a general form is lacking in standard language regarding patient/client rights and responsibilities relating to telehealth. Sample telehealth informed consent forms are available from the American Telemedicine Association.

During the informed consent process, describe the nature of telemedicine compared with in-person care (scope of service) as well as providing written information. Provide information about the encounter, prescribing policies (if applicable), communication and follow-up, record-keeping, scheduling, privacy and security, potential risks, mandatory reporting, provider credentials, and billing arrangements. Prior to initiating telehealth services, know when to recommend that the patient needs to see a healthcare professional for an in-person visit.

Who needs to abide by HIPAA regulations?

The HIPAA Privacy Rule, HIPAA Security Rule, as well as all Administrative Simplification rules, apply to “covered entities”, which include health plans, healthcare clearinghouses, and any health care provider who submits transactions electronically, like claims. Healthcare providers include all “providers of services” (e.g., institutional providers such as hospitals) and “providers of medical or health services” (e.g., non-institutional providers such as physicians, dentists and other practitioners) as defined by Medicare, and any other person or organization that furnishes, bills, or is paid for health care. If unsure of covered entity status, please refer to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) for guidance.

How are practitioners expected to ensure the privacy and confidentiality of patients’/clients’ data during the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) national public health emergency?

The HHS Office for Civil Rights (OCR) announced on March 17, 2020, that it will waive potential HIPAA penalties for good faith use of telehealth during the nationwide public health emergency due to COVID-19. This applies to telehealth provided for any reason, regardless of whether the telehealth service is related to the diagnosis and treatment of health conditions related to COVID-19. The notification and accompanying fact sheet explain how covered health care providers can use everyday communications technologies to offer telehealth to patients responsibly. Providers are encouraged to review the notification, and to routinely monitor the HHS Emergency Response page for more information about COVID-19 and HIPAA.

This notice means that covered health care providers may now use popular applications that allow for video chats, including Apple FaceTime, Google Hangouts video, or Skype, to provide telehealth during the COVID-19 nationwide public health emergency without risk of incurring a penalty for noncompliance with HIPAA Rules. If health care providers chose to use these applications to provide telehealth, providers are encouraged to notify patients that these third-party applications potentially introduce privacy risks, and providers should enable all available encryption and privacy modes when using such applications.

Covered health care providers that seek additional privacy protections for telehealth while using video communication products should provide such services through technology vendors that are HIPAA compliant and will enter into HIPAA business associate agreements (BAAs) in connection with the provision of their video communication products. There are many HIPAA-compliant telehealth solutions. While we do not endorse any specific brand here are names of a few options in no particular order: Doxy.me , thera-LINK,  TheraNest, SimplePractice, Zoom for healthcare, and VSee. We also recommend you contact your professional association to see what they may recommend to fit your needs.

How can practitioners ensure the care and treatment delivered via telehealth is high-quality?

Increased use of telehealth means that health care organizations and practitioners need to develop guidelines for monitoring telehealth practitioners and sharing internal review information. Federal law requires that, at a minimum, this shared information must include adverse events that result from a practitioner’s telehealth services and complaints a health care organization receives about a practitioner.

Practitioners must adhere to traditional clinical standards of care, and practice within the scope of practice authorized by law. The American Telemedicine Association has promulgated a variety of practice guidelines. The Telehealth Resource Center also provides resources for building and developing a telehealth program.

Outcome measurement offers practitioners useful information about how well a telehealth program is functioning, including further refinements that may be needed. Indicators should capture clinical, efficiency and satisfaction outcomes, including:

  • Patient/client complication and morbidity rates.
  • Compliance with provider performance criteria.
  • Diagnostic accuracy.
  • Adherence to clinical protocols.
  • Referral rates.
  • Patient/client satisfaction levels.
  • Cost per case.
  • Delays in accessing consultations, referrals or specialty practitioners.
  • Average waiting times.

Complete basic training in the telehealth system in use at your practice and participate in all training updates. Conduct routine audits of equipment and software functionality and know how to respond to equipment malfunctions. Regular equipment testing and maintenance helps prevent potential technical and user problems. Equipment should be suitable for diagnostic and treatment uses, readily available when needed and fully functional during clinical encounters. Facility safety guidelines should specify who is responsible for maintenance- know who to contact for technological assistance. Utilize checklists or logs to facilitate documentation of post-installation testing, pre-session calibration, and ongoing quality checking of audio, video and data transmission capabilities.

Satisfaction surveys capture vital data regarding patient/clients and provider perceptions of the telehealth program, as well as utilization patterns and the overall quality of care. Surveys also can reveal unexpected barriers to care, including accessibility issues and cost. A sample survey format for telehealth encounters is available here.

How should telehealth be documented?

Telehealth sessions should be as thoroughly documented as all other patient/client encounters, with both partners to the telehealth agreement contributing to the process. According to the American Health Information Management Association, telehealth records minimally should include:

  • Patient/client name.
  • Patient/client identification number at originating site.
  • Date of service.
  • Referring practitioner’s name.
  • Consulting practitioner’s name.
  • Provider organization’s name.
  • Type of evaluation to be performed.
  • Informed consent documentation.
  • Evaluation results.
  • Diagnosis/impression of practitioners.
  • Recommendations for further treatment.

The use of standardized intake and consultation forms can help practitioners achieve compliance with documentation parameters. Templates, such as those available from the American Telemedicine Association, offer a clear and consistent documentation format for evaluations and consultations.

All communications with the patient (verbal, audiovisual, or written) should be documented in the patient’s unique medical record (electronic medical record or paper chart) in accordance with documentation standards of in-person visits. Be sure to document follow-up instructions and any referrals to specialists. Also, fully document the specific interactive telecommunication technology used to render the consultation and the reason the consultation was conducted using telecommunication technology, and not face-to-face, in the patient’s medical record, in accordance with state and federal regulations.

Final thoughts

The emergence of telehealth capabilities during the current COVID-19 emergency period presents exciting opportunities to address some of the biggest challenges facing healthcare. Demand for telehealth services is expected to grow as connected devices proliferate and interoperability between healthcare providers expands. The provider-patient/client relationship will likely evolve as providers use telehealth to develop and maintain patient/client relationships over greater distances and patients/clients grow accustomed to new flexible, personalized care models. As healthcare continues to transform with the use of technology, it is essential for practitioners to be aware of the legal, ethical, and regulatory implications to their practice.

References/Additional Resources

The following additional sources offer a more detailed framework of guidelines, standards and tools for the safe practice of telemedical diagnosis and care:

Profession-Specific Resources

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APPENDIX B: “School Counselors: Phone Calls to Student Caretakers”

 

Caregiver Phone Calls – Some Suggestions

  1. Plan what you are going to say. Be prepared.
  2. If using a virtual link where you and the caretaker can be seen (Facetime, Zoom), be sure your technology is set up, your area is appropriate, and that you have a professional look.
  3. If using an audio only system, be sure your technology is working.
  4. Suggested Script for Speaking Directly with a Caregiver:

Speak slowly and clearly.

“Hello, my name is _______ and I am a counseling Practicum/Internship student from The College of New Jersey. I am enrolled in a Practicum/Internship course for this semester and am working with (name of counselor) at (name of school).

I am calling to introduce myself as (student name), a Practicum/Internship counselor, and to ask if I can be of any assistance to you.

This is a particularly challenging time and I want you to know that I am available to you. Should you have any questions or concerns about how your child is doing, what needs to be done at this time, and/or how to deal with the stress of this situation, I am available to help and would be happy to speak with you at any time. I also am available to answer any questions you might have and wonder if there is anything you would like to ask now?

I can give you my phone number and email, should you wish to speak with me. It would be advisable for us to determine a future appointment time in order to assure that we both are available. Your daughter or son also is welcome to contact me, should she/he want to speak with me.

It has been my pleasure to speak with you and I wish you health and safety. Again, I am most available to speak with you in the future.”

Suggested Script for Leaving a Voice Message: Remember to speak slowly and clearly. If leaving a phone number or email please repeat it a second time.

“Hello, my name is _______ and I am a counseling Practicum/Internship student from The College of New Jersey and I am enrolled in a Practicum/Internship course for this semester. I am working with (name of counselor) at (name of school).

This is a particularly challenging time and I want you to know that I am available to you. Should you have any questions or concerns about how your child is doing, what needs to be done at this time, and/or how to deal with the stress of this situation, I am available to help and would be happy to speak with you at any time.

I am leaving my phone number and email, should you wish to speak with me.  It would be advisable for us to determine a future appointment time in order to assure that we both are available. Your daughter or son also is welcome to contact me, should she/he want to speak with me.

Thank you for your attention to this message and I look forward to the possibility of speaking with you in the future.”

  1. Document who you have spoken with or have left a message for and the dates and times of contacts.
  2. Maintain contact with your site supervisor regarding these contacts.

 

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ): COVID-19 Response from Counselor Education

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