Q: I would prefer to have my appointment after the COVID-19 situation ends - is that OK?
A: Where possible, and given the uncertainty of the end-date for the COVID crisis, we would highly recommend not holding-off on appointments. It is important to continue to progress your plans and reach your goals via timely appointments. Post COVID, we anticipate increasing wait times, both from our therapists and NDIA approvals.
Q: What can I expect from my first telehealth appointment?
A: Your therapist will give you a call to set-up your initial appointment. You can discuss your preference for the type of assessment to be delivered, at this time. The assessment can be completed using Zoom or over the phone if this is your preference. The therapist will send you a step-by-step guide outlining how to access the meeting, as well as a link (if you are using zoom). During the initial appointment, the therapist will discuss your goals and ask you some questions so we can assess your needs. The therapist may ask you to ‘show them around’ your home or may ask you to demonstrate some tasks on camera. This will enable the therapist to develop a plan to meet your needs.
Q: How can the OT get the AT assessment right over telehealth?
A: We are still completing in-person assessments when they are deemed essential. We will complete all of the initial information gathering over telehealth to minimise the time we are spending with clients. However, if we do need to attend a client’s home for the equipment trial, this is still possible.
We have had some great success using telehealth for equipment trials, where the therapist has been able to view equipment over videolink and in conjunction with clients complete the assessment of suitability of the equipment.
Q: SIL/SDA houses are in lockdown and will not accept new admissions, therefore should I delay my referral for housing until following the COVID-19 crisis?
A: Many elements of a housing assessment can easily and successfully be completed via telehealth. For example, we can commence the assessment now, ensuring that your client is well prepared and at the front of the queue when housing placements start moving again.
Q: Can I expect the same service via telehealth as I would in an in-person visit?
A: Our therapists are working to continue to deliver high quality therapy services during the COVID-19 crisis. Our telehealth services are designed to assist you to continue to work towards your goals during this time. While the interaction with your OT or Physio may be different, the outcomes will be the same. Your therapist will still be able to assist you to set goals and then to work towards your goals. Sessions can be delivered in many ways, and we are being creative to assist you in achieving the same outcomes.
Q: Can all services be delivered via telehealth?
A: Many elements of all therapy services can be delivered via telehealth. Each client is evaluated on a case by case basis to determine options. There may be some occasions where an in-person assessment is required and currently we are still able to complete this when its essential. We will commence all therapy with an initial telehealth appointment, this can be as simple as a phone call or it could be a video call. During this session the therapist will discuss your needs and where necessary will arrange to see you in person. Where we are completing in-person assessments, we will keep our time with you to a minimum to ensure that we keep both you and our therapists safe.