How To Build & Send Counseling Forms: 7 Best Templates

Counseling Forms Templates

If you’re a counselor, you know that a major portion of your time is spent dealing with forms. Whenever you work with clients, there is a laundry list of things to inform, approve, and formally agree on.

The form situation can be difficult enough to work with when you’re seeing clients in person, but it can get even more complicated when you’re serving your clients via an online format. The good news is that there are some convenient new tools available to make sending, signing, and filing these forms quicker and easier for both you and your client.

Before you begin, we think you’ll enjoy creating your own counseling forms templates with Quenza’s $1 trial. Quenza’s blended care toolkit will help you design and share beautiful counseling forms with your clients easily, so that you can spend more quality time with your patients for better health outcomes.

How To Effectively Use Counseling Forms

First, let’s talk about how to work effectively with forms in your counseling practice.

You’ll want to make sure you’re using good forms. What makes a form “good”?

The specifics of each form will vary based on what you need to collect and how you need to collect it, but in general, your forms should be short, clear, and visually appealing.

Your forms should be:

  1. Short and to-the-point (don’t collect any unnecessary information)
  2. Clear and easy to understand (be very clear about what information you need and in what format you need it)
  3. Clean and visually appealing (consistent font and size, not too busy).

The specifics of each form will vary based on what you need to collect and how you need to collect it, but in general, your forms should be short, clear, and visually appealing.

In terms of actually using the forms, make sure that you do the following when sharing forms with your clients:

  1. Tell them what the form is for, what information it is collecting, and why you need it.
  2. Give them ample time to read through the whole form before they fill and/or sign it.
  3. Identify which areas they need to fill out and where they need to sign and date (if necessary).

Basically, the clearer you are with your clients about what you need from them, the easier it is for them to comply—whether that’s with components of the treatment, recommendations, or simply filling out forms.

Best Counseling Forms: 7 Templates & Samples

The forms you need will depend on the type of counseling you do and the unique needs of your practice. However, there are some great templates and example forms available that you can adopt or customize for your own use.

If you don’t see one that you need in the descriptions below, give it a quick web search and you’re bound to find at least one or two samples that you can adapt for your professional use.

Informed Consent Forms: 2 Templates

Informed consent forms are one of the most important forms in any counseling practice.

They provide a written and signed acknowledgment that you have given your client relevant information about their treatment, that you are on the same page about the goals of your partnership, and what you can expect from one another.

If you’re looking for an informed consent form you can use or adapt for use in your practice, look no further than these two templates.

This comprehensive form for online counseling from Clinical Care Consultants outlines what is allowed and expected in online counseling, what the risks are, how technology will be used to facilitate counseling, and the procedures for no shows, cancellations, and payment processing.[1]

This form from Genesis Counseling Center is specifically for online therapy services, and it outlines exactly what the client can expect from receiving online counseling. It also references how payment will be accepted, which can be modified to fit your practice’s procedures.[2]

2 Helpful Assessment Forms

For those that need to assess different aspects of their client’s goals, challenges, personality, or any other relevant trait or characteristic, assessment forms can be a great way to do that.

They streamline and standardize a process that would otherwise require a lot of discussion, note-taking, and reviewing after the session.

Here are two helpful examples of assessment forms you might be able to use or adapt in your counseling practice:

  1. Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9): this form provides you with a way to assess your client’s experience of depressive symptoms. It is a self-rating scale that directs clients to rate their symptoms on a scale from 0 (not at all) to 3 (nearly every day) and provides a rubric for the provider to assess the severity of their depression.
  2. General Anxiety Disorder (GAD-7): this form allows you to assess your client’s experience with anxiety symptoms. It is also a self-rating scale, with options ranging from 0 (not at all) to 3 (nearly every day), and provides an overall score of anxiety that you as the provider can check to determine the severity of their anxiety.
PHQ Quenza Assessment Counseling Forms Templates
Create customized digital copies of the PHQ-9 and other essential counseling forms easily using Quenza’s easy drag-and-drop tools.

Referral Counseling Forms: A Sample

If you’re a school counselor looking for a form that teachers and staff can use to refer students to you, you’ll find this School Referral Form helpful.

It includes space to put all relevant personal information as well as priority (low, high, or emergency), reason for referral (including a long list of potential reasons/concerns), space to clarify what has happened so far and what actions have been taken to remedy the issue(s), if any.

2 Forms for Counseling Employees

When counseling employees, the form needs are slightly different. Most personal information is already collected, and you likely won’t need to worry about billing or collecting payment.

Instead, these forms will focus on the reason for counseling, specific incidents in the workplace, and the employee’s and employer’s needs.

  1. This form provides a good template for working with an employee who has been referred to counseling for an incident or issue of some kind. It provides space to describe the reason for counseling, any corrective action that will take place or has taken place, and any comments from the employee.
  2. This counseling form is a more comprehensive counseling form, with more space to describe the incident or issue, the current counseling session, and the recommended or required change. It also provides options for corrective or disciplinary action to be taken and specifies when a check-in will be scheduled to monitor progress towards the employee’s goals.

It’s generally not a happy time when employees need to be counseled, but having the right forms can make it easier and less painful.

Using Forms in Telehealth: A Guide

You probably found at least a few of the templates above helpful, but finding a good template solves only one part of the challenge with forms; you still need a way to send them to your clients, to review and discuss them, and to receive and securely store them.

Using email to send, discuss, and receive forms is an option, but it’s not a good one. Email can be compromised, and it’s a messy way to keep track of things like forms and agreements. Emails can also easily be quarantined in a spam or junk folder, go to the wrong email address due to a single typo, or be ignored or forgotten in the busy-ness of life.

A much better and more convenient way to deal with forms in your counseling practice is to use software that is designed to handle them—safely, securely, and easily.

Quenza Counseling Forms
Quenza’s client app is a secure, HIPAA-compliant way to send counseling forms conveniently, and automatically remind clients to complete their forms.

How To Build & Send Online Forms

Quenza is one such tool that is capable of handling all your practice’s needs when it comes to creating, sending, and using forms.

First, you can use the Activity Builder to design your own custom forms for any reason or requirement. Drag and drop text, multiple-choice questions, text entry boxes, and more to create the perfect form.

Do you need to collect a name? No problem, just add in a short answer item!

Do you want to note the date? Easy, you can add in a date field!

Need your client to agree to something? Use a multiple-choice “yes/no” item to collect their agreement!

With Quenza, your forms are entirely customizable, to your specific needs. And once you have a good template set up, you can save it for quick future use. You can also create different versions of it if you need slightly different forms for different clients or situations.

It’s also easy to send out forms with Quenza. With the click of a button, you can have a form sent directly to your client’s inbox. You can even set up reminders to nudge your clients into completing the form if they don’t do it right away.

When they do complete the form, you’ll get a notification so you can review it for completeness right away.

7 Extra Features Included in Quenza

On top of the quick and convenient Activity Builder to create your own custom forms, exercises, resources, and more, there are tons of other helpful features that Quenza offers.

Here are just a few:

  • Automated care pathways so you can set up customized intake, onboarding, and treatment processes for your clients based on their needs.
  • A library of premade, science-based activities and pathways designed to help clients with a wide variety of goals and challenges.
  • A client app that boosts engagement with notifications, reminders, a personal to-do list, and a portfolio of completed activities.
  • Client result tracking so you can stay on top of your clients’ progress.
  • Client notes section to help you keep things organized.
  • Safe, direct communication feature to ensure you and your clients stay connected.
  • White label branding and customization, so your content looks uniquely “you.”

Final Thoughts

If you’re a counselor working with clients—especially in a digital format—you should consider using a tool like Quenza to help you manage your form needs. Quenza makes it easy to create and customize your own templates, send them out, and store signed forms securely.

Plus, Quenza comes with a ton of other helpful features that you can use to take your counseling practice to the next level!

Make sure you come back to the blog and check out what’s happening in the world of online counseling and what’s new with Quenza.

Happy counseling! To get started designing your own counseling forms, don’t forget to start your 30-day Quenza trial. Quenza’s complete digital toolkit will help you share counseling forms efficiently and effectively under your own professional brand, and will give you everything you need to run your practice digitally.

References

  1. ^ Clinical Care Consultants. (n.d.). Informed Consent for Online Counseling. Retrieved from https://clinicalcareconsultants.com/pdfs/informed-consent-for-online-counseling.pdf
  2. ^ Genesis Counseling Center. (2019). Informed Consent for Online Therapy Services. Retrieved from http://genesiscounselingcenter.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/Genesis-INFORMED-CONSENT-FOR-ONLINE-THERAPY-SERVICES-1.pdf

About the author

Courtney is currently working as a healthcare workforce researcher for the state of California and is a regular contributor to the Quenza blog. She has a passion for taking research findings and translating them into concise, actionable packages of information that anyone can understand and implement.

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