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What is telepractice?
In short, telepractice allows for continuity of care when in-person sessions are not practical or feasible. Over the past several weeks, the landscape of healthcare has drastically changed. The term “social distancing” or "physical distancing" has become a part of our vernacular — seemingly overnight — and as a large majority of the world has found a way to comply, there are many, like you, who are searching for ways to lessen the divide in order to provide care to those who need it. Telepractice can help you do just that.
How does Telepractice work?
You can continue to care for your clients under the umbrella of "telepractice". Watch one of our on-demand tutorials to see how Q-global can help you stay connected when you can’t meet face-to-face.
Assessment via telepractice: general guidelines
The use of assessment tools is a key area of study within the larger telepractice landscape. As professionals begin to adopt any new service delivery tool or model, it is imperative that they consider all the surrounding issues related to this change in service delivery method.
In general, the appropriateness of use of a specific assessment tool in the context of telepractice should be considered carefully. First, you are responsible for checking local laws and regulations for your clinical practice. Second, you should refer to guidelines from your professional association (e.g., CPA, SAC, CAOT) for further recommendations including ethical implications.
Along with a thorough review of the laws, guidelines, and professional association documents, you should consider the following:
- the nature of the clinical relationship between the clinician and client—sometimes establishing a relationship face-to-face first is warranted
- the purpose of the assessment—it may not be appropriate to administer a test remotely if you need to ensure the correct individual is taking the test, or if you need to observe the actual test administration in detail, or if there is a legal circumstance that dictates an in-person evaluation
- the availability of a trained facilitator or independent support personnel
- the availability of a remote testing environment that is free of distractions, and conducive to valid test taking
Implementation: a five-theme framework
Specific issues in the delivery of assessment via telepractice include, but are not limited to:
- The age and characteristics of the examinee
- The skill, experience, and training level(s) of the examiner
- The assessment task format(s)
- Appropriate modifications of tasks delivered in a telepractice setting
- The data supporting the valid and reliable modification of any use of norm-referenced scores validated on a paper administration in a telepractice environment
- The legal requirements of any use of published test content in a telepractice context
A five-theme framework (Eichstadt, Castilleja, Jakubowitz, & Wallace, 2013) for addressing issues of assessment in telepractice may be helpful in identifying key areas of focus or concern for each assessment. The five themes are:
- Audio/Visual Environment (e.g., sound quality, video quality, background distractions)
- Examiner Factors (e.g., technological competence, familiarity with the test)
- Examinee Factors (e.g., behaviour, fatigue level, comfort with technology)
- Test/Test Materials (e.g., type of task to be administered, format of stimulus, ease of use)
- Other/Miscellaneous (e.g., purpose of the administration, nature of clinical relationship)
Please note that any reproduction of the currently published formats of any test requires prior permission from Pearson before you begin to manipulate any copyrighted material. See the Legal Policies on our website for additional detail.
Many of the professional organizations you are associated with have developed formal statements or documents relating to telepractice. For example:
- Canadian Psychological Association (CPA)
- Speech-Language and Audiology Canada (SAC)
- Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists (CAOT)
Across each professional practice domain, there are many different but related terms used to describe this service delivery model. Pearson Clinical Assessment Canada uses the term Telepractice as an umbrella term to reflect the most broad sense of the concept across the most settings, including schools, medical facilities, private practices, outpatient clinics, home-based care and others. The term telepractice also encompasses the broad array of activities currently used within this model, including interprofessional collaboration, consultation, direct service, supervision and more.
This page was updated on Thursday, April 2, 2020 [15:40]
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Letter of No Objection
Download Pearson's Letter of No Objection to permit delivery of telepractice services of certain copyrighted materials.
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