E-therapy during a pandemic in Poland and worldwide - a temporary trend or a new reality?
Keywords:e-therapy, online therapy, psychotherapy
Aim: The purpose of this article was to present the benefits and difficulties of online psychotherapy and to highlight the ethical context of this form of therapy.
Concept. Conducting psychotherapy online is not a new phenomenon. However, the spread of this form of therapy has changed in recent years and for that reason, the literature on e-therapy focused on the period just before and during the Covid 19 pandemic was analysed.
Results and conclusion. Despite the initial costs associated with implementing e-tools and training psychotherapists, e-therapy is a financially beneficial mode of operation for institutions. On the other hand, a barrier may be the quality of equipment and Internet connections available in offices and insufficient staff training.
For patients, the benefits of e-therapy are primarily related to easier access to services. Both increased time flexibility and reduced mobility barriers are essential, especially when combined with financial savings. However, attention should be paid to patients with limited network competence or difficulty accessing equipment or the Internet. The spread of e-therapy may result in the exclusion of this still large population.
The online therapeutic process involves greater risk and patient concerns about recording, storing, and securing confidential information. The key in this situation seems to be the psychotherapist's awareness, caution, and transparently informing patients about how to work and secure data.
Abbott, J. A., Klein, B., and Ciechomski, L. (2008). Best Practices in Online Therapy. . Journal of Technology in Human Services, 26(2/4), 360–375. https://doi.org/10.1080/15228830802097257.
Al-Alawi, M. M.-M., Al-Maniri, A., Panchatcharam, S. M., and Al Sinawi, H. (2021). Efficacy of a Six-Week-Long Therapist-Guided Online Therapy Versus Self-help Internet-Based Therapy for COVID-19-Induced Anxiety and Depression: an Open-label, Pragmatic, Randomized Controlled Trial. JMIR Mental Health, 8 (2).
Hertlein, K. M., Blumer, M. L., and Mihaloliakos, J. H. (2015). Marriage and Family Counselors' Perceived Ethical Issues Related to Online Therapy. Family Journal, 23(1), 5–12. https://doi.org/10.1177/1066480714547184.
Knechtel, L. and Erickson, C. (2021). Who's Logging on? Differing Attitudes about Online Therapy. Journal of Technology in Human Services, 39(1), 24–42.
Kotera, Y. K., Lloyd, C., Edwards, A.-M., and Ozaki, A. (2021). Qualitative Investigation into Therapists' Experiences of Online Therapy: Implications for Working Clients. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 18 (19).
Machluf, R., Abba Daleski, M., Shahar, B., Kula, O., and Bar-Kalifa, E. (2021). Couples Therapists' Attitudes Toward Online Therapy During the COVID-19 Crisis. Family Process, https://doi.org/10.1111/famp.12647.
Makara-Studzińska, M. and Madej, A. (2017). Cyberterapia jako nowoczesna forma terapii. [Cybertherapy as a modern form of therapy]. Journal of Education, Health and Sport, 7(7), 21–28.
Rudnicka, P., Pindych, A. and Probierz, E. (2018.). Etyczne aspekty prowadzenia terapii online analiza wybranych stron internetowych. [Ethical dimensions of conducting online therapy: the analysis of selected websites]. Annales Universitatis Paedagigicae Cracoviensis, 10(4), pages 64–73 DOI 10.24917/20837222.214.171.124.
Rudzik-Sierdzińska, A. and Sierdziński, J. (2018). Koszty i korzyści rozwiązań telemedycznych [Telemedical Solutions: Costs and Benefits]. Studia i prace. Kolegium zarządzania i finansów., 165, pages 49–61.
Sahebi, B. (2020). Clinical Supervision of Couple and Family Therapy during COVID-19. Family Process,, 59(3), pages 989–996. https://doi.org/10.1111/famp.12591.
Sampaio, M., Haro, M. V., De Sousa, B., Melo, W. V., and Hoffman, H. G. (2021). Therapists Make the Switch to Telepsychology to Safely Continue Treating Their Patients During the COVID-19 Pandemic. Virtual Reality Telepsychology May Be Next. Frontiers in Virtual Reality, 1, https://doi.org/10.3389/frvir.2020.576421.
Valentine, L., McEnery, C., O'Sullivan, S., D'Alfonso, S., Gleeson, J., Bendall, S., and Alvarez-Jimenez, M. (2021). Young people's experience of online therapy for first-episode psychosis: A qualitative study. Psychology and Psychotherapy, 95(1), 155–172.
How to Cite
Copyright (c) 2022 Magdalena Kazimierska-Zając, Luba Ślósarz
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.