May 15th, 2020

COVID-19: Telehealth Update & Transition Plan

Hello & Happy Friday!

 

I hope this message finds you and your family happy and healthy! I am writing to provide you with a few updates at Just Be Counseling Services. The first update is that we are extending the telehealth only sessions until June 1st.  At that time, we will be open for both telehealth and in-person sessions. It is completely up to you as to which method of session you would like to participate in. Please be aware that if you choose to participate in-person, you are assuming all risks that may be associated with in-person sessions. 

 

Just Be Counseling Services and the other counseling practices in the building will be working to keep higher trafficked areas clean and sanitized to the best of our ability.  If you are not feeling well or are experiencing any symptoms such as fever, cough, or shortness of breath, do not come into the building. Instead, please contact your therapist and request either a telehealth session or reschedule your appointment. Additionally, if you or anyone you have come into contact with have been diagnosed with COVID-19, have been asked to self-quarantine, have traveled to/from/through any country on the CDC watchlist in the past 14 days, please do not schedule any in-person sessions at this time. We will send clients home if we become aware of any of the above information or symptoms. Please use any precautions you see fit if/when participating in in-person sessions (ie. wear masks, remain 6 ft. apart from others, wash your hands etc.).  A few suggestions for keeping you, our therapists, and other clients safe would be to stay in your car and text your therapist that you have arrived. Your therapist can come get you at the front door when they are ready. Additionally, please do not bring any additional members to the office if they are not receiving therapy. We are working to limit the number of people in the waiting room as it is not a very large space. 

 

For our second update, Just Be Counseling Services is expanding! We have added a new therapist, Nicole Powell, to the team and have a couple more starting within the next month. With the increase in stress, anxiety, life transitions, grief and loss, depression, overwhelmingness, lack of motivation, and relationship challenges, the need for extra support and guidance is crucial. For this reason, we are expanding the practice to be better able to serve more people in need. 

 

If you have any questions about the above information, please don't hesitate to reach out. I look forward to continuing our work together!

 

Have a wonderful weekend! :) 

 

Kelsey Kjellsen MC, LPC, NCC

Owner & Lead Clinician

Just Be Counseling Services, LLC

April 13th, 2020

COVID-19: Telehealth Extension

Greetings! 

 

Another two weeks have passed and I hope you and your family are staying safe and healthy. I applaud you for hanging in there and doing your best to adjust to the current situation. This is HARD and there is no "right" way through it. Please be gracious with yourself and others as you navigate through this difficult time. We are all in this together and are all being impacted in some way shape or form.  Please remember to take care of yourself too! It is critical that you spend a little time each day taking care of YOUR needs. This may mean time to read a book, relax in a warm bath, go for a jog, work on the car, watch your favorite tv show, make your favorite meal, FaceTime or video chat with a friend, etc. 

 

 As you are aware, Just Be Counseling Services has been operating exclusively through telehealth for the safety of clients, staff, and therapists.  We have decided to extend the telehealth only services through May 15th. In the event that things become safe to have in-person sessions before that, Just Be Counseling Services will update you. Scheduling hours will continue to be extended daily from 9am-8pm Monday through Friday to accommodate any scheduling challenges. Please continue to reach out for support during this time. Please checkout the website under the "UPDATES" tab for current information about telehealth sessions and the adjustments being made due to COVID-19.

 

As our world is being impacted, psychologically, we all are experiencing trauma. This has caused society as a whole to shift our needs to the two most basic components: Physiological needs and Safety needs. I've included a chart below to help you understand what I am talking about. We are in this current state of unknown which creates instability within our lowest needs. We cannot move up the pyramid of needs until the foundation is secure. With COVID-19, it is posing a threat to our safety and security needs as a society and for some may even be threatening the physiological needs such as food, water, shelter, etc. The safety and security needs are needs that surround our natural and normal desire for an orderly, predictable world that is somewhat within our control. This is currently a challenge for us all as the "normalcy" of life has clearly shifted over the past month, which can leave us feeling as if things are completely outside of our control. This downshift in levels can create some difficulties for yourself, your family, your job or any other part of your life. 

To help, try focusing on what is within your control. For example, create a daily schedule to keep some type of "normal" routine going. Reduce time spent looking at the media surrounding COVID-19. This uncertainty and mixed messaging is what is contributing to the uncertainty, and threatening our safety and security needs. Set daily goals that are achievable. Remember, we are not likely operating at our highest potentials right now, so be kind to yourself and set realistic goals. These may include getting outside at least once per day, exercising for at least 30 minutes, showering, making at least one healthy food choice, doing something enjoyable, having family time, and setting limits surrounding work (ie. work from 9-5 then log out, don't check emails after 6pm, etc.). Keep yourself healthy by washing your hands regularly and avoiding contact with others when possible. Try these few tools and encourage family members to do the same to help create some type of balance and order in your day-to-day life. If you are in need of further assistance, please don't hesitate to reach out. It is our job to help people get through challenging times like these and we are here for you!

Just Be-lieve in yourself.

Kelsey Kjellsen MC, LPC

Just Be Counseling Services

March 31st, 2020

COVID-19: Telehealth Extension

Good Morning,

 

After further consideration and evaluation, it is still in the best interest of my clients, staff, and myself to continue providing counseling services via secure telehealth. This will be in effect until April 15th at which time I will reevaluate and update you on the plan moving forward. 

 

This can be a very scary time and the pandemic is impacting us all in different ways. It is crucial for your mental health to stay connected and get the needed support during this time. I would strongly encourage continuing care as I have seen a drastic increase of anxiety, depression, fear, panic, family dynamic challenges, and behavioral issues in people and our society since the pandemic began. I am here for you and want to help you and your family through this. The telehealth sessions are just as, if not more, helpful for clients. I've had clients mention it was "easy" and "very convenient" and have seen even more vulnerability in some compared to their in-person sessions. 

 

As mentioned in my previous update, I have extended my hours to be readily accessible to you and your families needs. If you have any questions or concerns about telehealth services, please don't hesitate to ask. We are all in this journey together and together we can navigate our way through the rough terrain. 

In health and with kindness,

Kelsey Kjellsen, LPC

Just Be Counseling Services

March 15th, 2020

COVID-19: Telehealth in Effect

 

Dear Clients,

 As you may have heard, as of March 11, 2020, Governor Ducey has declared a state of emergency regarding the presence of Covid-19, also known as novelcoronavirus.  Additionally, there has been an increase to 13 confirmed COVID-19 cases as of 3/15/20 report.

While no cases have been connected to my office, my intent is to minimize community risk and provide a pathway for continuity of services during this time. Health and government officials are urging individuals to engage in social distancing which includes working from home whenever feasible.

It is with this recommendation that Just Be Counseling Services is transitioning to exclusively online telehealth sessions effective Monday, March 16th until March 31st, at which point, the need for continued online sessions will be re-evaluated. We can meet via telehealth for as long as necessary or desired, and will work toward resuming in person sessions as soon as it is medically responsible.

I have the ability to provide secure telehealth sessions via your client portal in SimplePractice, which will allow us to continue meeting without interruption through this time period. It is important that throughout this time we work to stay connected and navigate on-going or new life stressors.

A few things to mention about this time-limited transition:

  • Just Be Counseling Services has extended availability for telehealth sessions from 9:00am- 8:00pm Monday- Friday to accommodate any scheduling conflicts. Please contact your therapist to schedule or visit the website http://www.justbecounselingservices.com/book-online

  • Again, this is time-limited – appointments will resume at the office unless you prefer telehealth.

  • If you have concerns about what an online/telehealth session is like, please read the tips in the Frequently Asked Questions below. If you have additional concerns, please contact your therapist.

  • Just Be Counseling Services respects everyone who prefers in-person sessions. We want to work with you where you are most comfortable; however, the need to be responsible stewards of health is a priority.

  • Please reach out to your therapist with any specific concerns regarding the cancellation policy. With increase session flexibility, telehealth sessions will be easier to reschedule in a timely manner.

  • All sessions will be conducted via the integrated video platform through the client portal. No additional software is required.

  • If you have sessions schedule between now and March 31st, your clinician will switch the location of your session from in-person to video. Please contact your therapist if you need to make any adjustments.

 

As such, and as always, the priorities of Just Be Counseling Services remain the same: To optimize our clients well-being. We ask you do not automatically disqualify the idea of telehealth sessions and Just Be Counseling Services will return that consideration and work with you on any schedule challenges. Again, this is time-limited and our commitment to keep you, your family, and ourselves healthy and return to our routine is paramount.

In health and with kindness,

Kelsey Kjellsen, LPC

Frequently Asked Questions and Resources:

What is SimplePractice?

SimplePractice is the online health records system I use. Your client portal, appointment reminders, documents, calendar availability, are all hosted on SimplePractice. The same will be true of telehealth sessions.

Telehealth FAQs answered by SimplePractice:

What is telehealth?

Through audio and video over the internet, you can meet with your clinician on-the-go from your desktop, laptop, tablet, or mobile device (iOS or Android) - it's your choice! Telehealth allows us to connect anywhere with secure and convenient appointments that save you time and hassle. There's no need to deal with traffic when you can schedule and attend your appointments directly from a laptop or mobile device. 

What equipment do I need?

To participate in Telehealth appointments from your home, you will need one of the following devices:

  • Desktop computer with a webcam, speakers, a 2.5 GHz processor, and 4 GB of RAM OR

  • Laptop computer with built-in webcam and speakers, a 2.5 GHz processor, and 4 GB of RAM OR

  • Tablet device with built-in webcam and speakers, OR

  • Smartphone with at least iOS 10 or Android 6.0  (Note: To use a smartphone, you must first download Telehealth by SimplePractice - available for iOS or Android in the app store.)

  • You will also need an internet connection that is at least 10mbps. For optimal results, a reliable, high-speed internet connection with a bandwidth of at least 10 mbps will minimize connection issues and provide the best quality.

 

How should I prepare my space for a Telehealth appointment?

  • Identify a suitable room that is quiet, private, and free of distractions.

  • To keep background noise to a minimum, make sure to close any doors, shut windows, turn off the television, and keep loud pets in another room if possible. Consider hanging a “Do Not Disturb” sign on the door to avoid interruptions. 

Is Telehealth private?

Just like a face-to-face appointment, your Telehealth visit will be private and confidential.

Will the appointments be recorded?

None of our appointments will ever be recorded or stored.

Are your fees different for telehealth?

No. All service costs remain the same.

I’m an existing client and I want to switch to a Telehealth format. What’s next?

Please reach out to me via email or phone and let me know. I have additional documentation and instructions I will send you and we can start meeting via Telehealth immediately.

I’m a new client and I’m interested in Telehealth.

Please call me at 970-510-6911 and leave a confidential email with your name, best contact information, a brief description of what you are looking for, and indicate your interest in Telehealth. I will return your call as soon as possible. I am accepting new clients at this time and am happy to do so via Telehealth.

My job was affected by the outbreak and now I’m not sure I can afford therapy. Now what?

Please reach out to me as soon as possible to discuss. Continuity of your services during this time is my primary concern.

I have another question you didn’t answer here.

Please feel free to reach out to me with any additional questions. This is a dynamic situation and as such, I may not have every answer however I will do my best to connect you to the right resources.

Covid-19 Resource Links:

If you have any questions about Covid-19, please visit the CDC website for the most up-to-date information:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

For information related to Maricopa County, visit:

https://www.maricopa.gov/5460/Coronavirus-Disease-2019

Preventing Spread:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/index.html

Helpful ideas and links to manage stress or anxiety related to the outbreak:

  • Step back from social media and news outlets

  • Use the opportunity in session to speak to your clinician about the balance between productive versus unproductive worry

  • Speak to your medical provider about ways to manage your personal risk

  • Social distance when possible. Enjoy time spent with close family members.

  • Take some time for self-care and stress reducing activities. (ie. Take a walk, read a book, play a board game, organize or clean, etc.)

  • Balance the use of hand sanitizer with the use of lotion, disinfecting wipes, and disinfecting spray to minimize pain and dryness in hands

  • A really helpful infographic about the realities of coronavirus can be found here:

https://informationisbeautiful.net/visualizations/covid-19-coronavirus-infographic-datapack/?fbclid=IwAR3sg AwswpBw9fg8AUvnrVfLDtWe2U8KHJKwg-wY-gRstdYdKBW1P0zubQ

https://adaa.org/finding-help/coronavirus-anxiety-helpful-resources

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