If you’re an online therapist or mental health coach, you know that running a practice takes a lot of work. A good mental health platform can often help you deliver much higher quality care to those you help, but which should you choose?
This guide looks at what you should look for based on your needs, as well as the best mental health platforms for students and employees.
What is a Mental Health Platform?
A mental health platform is a software solution that helps you run your practice and support your patients in a more impactful way. Different platforms come with different features, but they generally perform two types of functions:
- Helping you manage routine or administrative tasks, e.g., documentation, scheduling, and billing
- Enabling more effective and efficient treatment and care, e.g., features for treatment planning, resource design, or group therapy.
Telehealth platforms are typically HIPAA-compliant, meaning that they are designed with safeguards to protect the privacy and security of patients and providers. They may also be designed for different contexts, with some solutions offering specialized tools such as team or group coaching and online learning software features.
Let’s take a closer look at how they’re used by mental health practitioners.
How To Use Online Platforms for Telehealth
Telehealth platforms are typically HIPAA-compliant, meaning that they are designed with safeguards to protect the privacy and security of patients and providers.
There is no “correct way” to deliver therapy or mental health treatments online. As a digital provider, it’s best to think of a platform as a toolkit that makes your work easier in two senses:
- By helping you organize and streamline your practice management tasks, and
- By simplifying your specialty-specific tasks, such as preparing mental health assessments and delivering programs to your patients.
Essentially, a telehealth platform becomes a strategic advantage when it helps you save time, increase your impact, and potentially grow your professional practice.
Here are a few examples of how you can use online platforms for telehealth.
As a therapist or provider, a good platform can help you communicate securely with your clients through HIPAA-compliant messaging or video conferencing, as shown below.
Rather than juggling multiple email chains and third-party programs, the right tools will enable you to offer convenient touchpoints at various stages of your clients’ journeys so that you can:
- Provide feedback
- Answer questions
- Encourage accountability, and
- Check in with and motivate your clients.
Resource Creation and Sharing
A good mental health platform can also make it easy for you to develop and share personalized resources with your clients.
Using Quenza’s Activity builder tools, for example, it’s easy to create psychoeducational worksheets, personalized exercises, and videos or audio that can be sent instantly to those you help.
Content creation tools enable more efficient resource prep, giving you more time to focus on the quality and effectiveness of your interventions.
A lot of time goes into developing mental health treatment plans, but a telehealth platform with specialized tools can greatly simplify the process.
Quenza’s Pathway builder, shown below, is a great example of how providers can use digital tools to curate therapeutic resources into bespoke programs and deliver them to clients on a schedule.
Pathways and programs can also be saved as customizable templates, making it much easier to deliver personalized programs without starting from scratch every time.
Practice and Client Relationship Management
Mental health software can also come with a range of practice and CRM tools, such as billing and appointment scheduling functions.
While not directly related to the mental health services you deliver, these can automate many of the routine tasks that add up as your patient list grows. The advantage of these tools is obvious—you can create more time and focus for core tasks such as consulting and supporting patients.
3 Best Digital Platforms For Students
There are a lot of considerations involved in providing mental healthcare for students, but one of the most important factors is how you plan to keep your audience engaged in your program.
As we’ve seen, it’s much easier to create personalized and, thus, more engaging treatment plans with an online mental health platform; here are three of our top picks reviewed.
|Quenza is perfect for planning, designing, and delivering mental health interventions such as exercises, CBT tools, and lessons with younger patients.|
Perhaps the best thing about this white-label platform is the user-friendly drag-and-drop Activity builder that allows you to create fully bespoke resources from scratch in minutes. Quenza also comes with a Pathway tool that greatly simplifies treatment planning and a library of science-based therapy and coaching templates (Expansions) that can be customized and delivered through the free client app.
|Good For||Practice Management, Treatment Planning, Online Therapy, Mental Health Coaching|
|For mental health practitioners working one-on-one with students online, TheraNest comes with useful treatment planning features and HIPAA-compliant videoconferencing features built in.|
TheraNest lacks the content creation tools and customizability of other platforms, but comes with a Client Portal that supports payment processing, self-scheduling, and interactive forms.
|Good For||Practice Management, Treatment Planning, Mental Health Coaching, Online Psychiatry|
|MyClientsPlus is an online mental health platform designed for solo practitioners and smaller practices, which makes it a good choice for schools and universities. The software comes with HIPAA-compliant videoconferencing and easy-to-use mental healthcare templates but lacks any very specialized tools for making treatment plans.|
|Good For||Online Therapy, Treatment Planning, Client Relationship Management|
3 Apps For Employees
If you’re looking for lower-intensity mental health interventions that can easily be applied in organizational settings, here are some mental health apps that might fit the bill.
|Talkspace is an online therapy platform through which employees can find and connect with mental health practitioners.|
After signing up for the web or mobile app, users are matched with a therapist and can leave them messages 24/7 in a private virtual room.
The app can be a good way to help employees who aren’t comfortable speaking with a therapist in person, and there are numerous plans available, including unlimited text, audio, and video messaging.
|Good for||One-on-one online therapy|
|Price||$260/month and up|
|For employees struggling with symptoms of stress, anxiety, and panic, this app offers informative videos with coping strategies for use in the moment.|
Panic Relief includes psychoeducation on panic attacks and how they occur, with exercises such as deep breathing, square breathing, visualization, and other relaxation techniques.
|Good for||Anxiety, Stress|
|More info||Panic Relief|
|Headspace is a mindfulness app that includes meditations and practical exercises for stress, sleep, productivity, and focus, plus psychoeducational videos on mindfulness and related concepts.|
The platform offers a special plan for organizations through which all team members can have access to the app.
This includes tailored meditations and experiences catered to your team and access to resources on employee engagement in the workplace.
|Good for||Mindfulness, Stress|
Is There An App For Workplace Mental Health?
There are plenty of solutions designed to promote wellbeing, build resilience, and help employees self-manage their mental health. The hard part is picking the right one or finding a platform that offers customizability and employee engagement tools rather than cookie-cutter mental healthcare interventions.
If you’re still looking for the right app for your employees or team, we have a range of articles that you might find helpful in picking the right solution:
- 10 Great Mental Health Coaching App and Software Solutions
- 25 Best Mental Health Apps to Download Today [2021 Update]
- 9 Best CBT Apps For Digital Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Finding the perfect mental health platform for your context is a matter of knowing your audience and goals—hopefully, these reviews have given you a good idea of what to look for!
The right app should make it easy for you to tailor your solutions and their delivery to those you help, so why not try a $1, 30-day trial of Quenza today and see how it works for you?