These guidelines are intended to provide a framework for the type of recommended conduct or practices psychologists need to be aware of when providing services using telepsychology. The Ohio Psychological Association, which developed the guidelines, defines telepsychology as the provision of non–face-to-face psychological services by distance communication technology such as telephone, e-mail, chat, and videoconferencing.
The guidelines are based upon the American Psychological Association (APA) 2002 Code of Ethics and the 1997 APA Ethics Committee statement on electronic services. Although focused primarily upon clinical services, they are intended to be applicable to any psychological services provided using communication technology.
The guidelines address the following issues:
- The appropriateness of telepsychology
- Legal and ethical requirements
- Informed consent and disclosures
- Secure communications/electronic transfer of client information
- Access to and storage of communications
- Fees and financial arrangements