Online Individual and Relationship Counseling (Telehealth)

Woman taking part in a telehealth counseling session via a tablet

The Village offers counseling and mental health therapy online via telehealth for residents of Minnesota and North Dakota. It is the mission of The Village Family Service Center to enhance the lives of our clients, and our telehealth counseling services are another way to provide access to therapy services that will assist people in making changes or getting new ideas about how to live emotionally, socially, and physically healthier lives.

"I am in a location without access to providers and having the virtual appointments has been the key to the progress I've been able to make in this difficult time of my life." – Client Testimonial

If you have any questions, feel free to contact us online.

EMERGENCY HELP: If you feel like you may harm yourself or another person, please call 9-1-1 or go to your nearest emergency room.

Frequently asked questions about telehealth

Why telehealth therapy?

Counseling via the internet may be a more convenient option for some. Busy schedules, children in the home, lack of mobility, and travel for work are just a few barriers people face in making an in-office counseling appointment. In addition, some people simply prefer to receive services in the privacy of their own home. For relationship counseling, telehealth appointments can be scheduled at a variety of times and you will both see and hear your counselor. It is another way of not having to go it alone when dealing with the complexities of life.

How do I pay for my sessions?

Telehealth counseling may be covered by insurance, The Village Employee Assistance Program (EAP), and other national employee assistance programs, or individuals may pay for web services out of their own pocket. We accept a variety of debit and credit cards. To contact us, you can request an appointment online. Please note in the "reason for contacting us" field that you are interested in telehealth counseling. (If you have an EAP through someone other than The Village, please contact your EAP provider to request a telehealth appointment.) 

What qualifications do your telehealth counselors have?

Our counselors have a minimum of a master’s degree in a mental health field and are licensed; we only provide telehealth services to residents of states in which The Village currently has a licensed therapist available for telehealth counseling. This is to ensure that all ethical and practice standards of your state of residence are followed and you get the best services possible. We will match you up with a counselor who is appropriately licensed and specially trained to provide web-based (telehealth) counseling. For further information on the qualifications of all our therapists go to our Providers webpage.

Are there differences between telehealth and in-office counseling?

The most obvious difference between telehealth (online) counseling and counseling in the office is that you can get counseling from the comfort and privacy of your own home, and you save the time and expense of traveling to a counseling office. If you have children at home, it can also save you the cost of child care or dealing with the difficulties of bringing children along to an in-office session.

In terms of effectiveness, the research from Kessler, Amstadter and the American Telemedicine Association (ATA) has shown that for most issues, web-based therapy is as effective as in-office therapy. To ensure telehealth sessions are as confidential as our in-office sessions, The Village uses an encrypted web service so what you share in session stays between you and the counselor.

How does relationship counseling work online?

Basically telehealth (internet-based) counseling works the same way as in-office relationship counseling though rather than coming into the counselor’s office you can have the session from the comfort of your own home. You and your partner together, via live video conferencing, can discuss with the counselor the issues impacting your relationship. You will not have to worry about traveling to an appointment. 

Can my counselor make a referral, if needed?​

Sometimes the complexity of the issues will require specialized treatment and intervention. If this is the situation, the counselor will assist with referral recommendations and contacts for in-office services. If you want your counselor to share information with a referral source or some other party you will need to sign a release of information form authorizing the information that can be shared, with whom, and for how long.

Limits to Confidentiality 

The Village Family Service Center and its counselors make every possible effort to protect your confidentiality. There are, however, limits to confidentiality – Village counselors, as required by law, are mandatory reporters of child abuse and neglect and are also required to report abuse and neglect of vulnerable adults. In such cases a report is filed with county social services. In situations where a client states suicidal or homicidal intention, our counselors by law have a duty to warn and are to make sure the client and/or threatened person(s) are safe. This may require the counselor to call an emergency contact or emergency services, and in cases of threat of harm to others, warn the person who has been threatened. Further information is included in the Clients Rights and Notice of Privacy Practices forms you will review and sign prior to scheduling an appointment. 

Are my sessions private?

Your counselor at The Village will be providing services from a private office; no other person will be in that office without your permission. We also highly recommend you secure your own location by shutting doors, turning off phones, and not allowing any onlookers. Sessions are for you only (and your partner if you are doing relationship counseling). It is very important to remember that privacy on your end of the connection is your responsibility.

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