The University of the District of Columbia (UDC) television studios, UDCtv, provides the Washington, DC area with programming geared to foster health, political and environmental awareness.  Dr. Katherine Marshall Woods hosts this UDCtv show entitled “A Healthy Mind” featuring guests from a myriad of professions lending information to promote healthy living and lifestyles.  Entries entitled: “A Healthy Mind” share these interviews.

A Healthy Mind

On April 17th, 2020, Danielle Blessings Taylor, LMFT was invited onto the show to discuss the importance and accomplishments of telehealth. Mrs. Blessing Taylor, LMFT is a licensed marriage and family therapist who has devoted over 10 years of her career performing marriage and family therapy.  She specializes in cultivating healthy relationships with individuals, couples, and families. Mrs. Danielle Blessing Taylor, LMFT offers both in person therapy services and telehealth services to create flexibility, comfort, and eliminate travel cost. 

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Dr. Marshall Woods: “My name is, Dr. Katherine Marshall Woods, and your host for this edition of A Healthy Mind. The purpose of this video series is to educate and inform the public about mental health, from public policy and to the various disorders that affect healthy minds.”

“According to health resources and service administration, telehealth is defined by the use of electronic information and telecommunication technologies to support long distance clinical healthcare; patient and professional health related education, public health, and health administration. Telehealth includes the use of video conferencing, the Internet, streaming media, and other communications sources. With the recent pandemic of the corona virus, telehealth has experienced a surge in usage. The recommendations for social distancing highlights the benefits of telehealth, receiving services in the confines of your own private space and home.”

“Mrs. Danielle Blessing Taylor has provided telehealth services for the last 6 years. She is a licensed marital and family therapist in DC, Maryland, Virginia, and Pennsylvania who has provided therapy to individuals, couples, and families since 2010. She has been providing telehealth in conjunction with face-to-face therapy since she began her private practice in 2015. She has found that, over the years, telehealth can be just as effective as in-person therapy; and has developed ways to have successful and ethical sessions using this platform. Please welcome our guest Mrs. Danielle Blessing Taylor.”

“Lets start first, being a marital family therapist, what is that exactly?”

Mrs. Blessing Taylor: “Umm, so it’s a mix, most people think that it’s just seeing marriage and family in the therapy room. But, it’s a mix between individual, couples, family, and it’s looking at it, the way I look at it is a systemic view so imagining that there are either family members in the room and being able to look at each problem more contextually, you know, instead of what it is that people are going through, it’s what’s underneath it, what are the roots, where does it come from? And then, just having other people in the room helps with that to work on the dynamics and helping, create change right there.”

Dr. Marshall Woods: “Mhmm, and so you’ve been providing telehealth services for approximately 5 years. What made you start your private practice performing this sort of therapy?”

Mrs. Blessing Taylor: “Umm, so what brought me to telehealth? Yeah, so I was doing a lot of group private practice and then transitioned into private practice. And, my husband was actually moving, his company wanted us to move across the country, and so I was thinking how can I still keep my practice; and I was still building it a the time, so it kind of threw me into it. And, I just thought I could do it online, then I started looking into the regulations and the laws and how to do it ethically, and checking with all the marriage and family therapy boards in each state, and where we were going. And then just decided that after doing it for a couple years, that I find it more effective sometimes and the clients find it a little bit more effective too. So, I feel finally more open and really liking it, and we can make a lot of progress just like we’re in the therapy together. So, it’s become my main mode of therapy and then I mix in a little bit of in-person, just to keep the dynamic going of that connection.” 

Dr. Marshall Woods:  “Mhmm, it sounds like it’s been really convenient for a lifestyle of a therapist who maybe on the go, or not necessarily stable, or knowing exactly where they are going land and what state.”

Mrs. Blessing Taylor: “Mhmm, yea, Definitely!”

Dr. Marshall Woods: “You mentioned then, I realized that I also spoke about providing ethical services, and you mentioned researching the laws and the regulations. And, I can imagine that, of course, patients want ethical services. How does telehealth, how is it influenced by rules and regulations of different laws?”

Mrs. Blessings Taylor: “Yeah, so that’s a good questions. So, whether it is insurance or out of pocket, each state requires, has different regulations based on your licensure. So, whether you are a social worker or marriage county therapist so, having to call the state that the client is typically in because, each state regulates where the services is provided. So, they could regulate that the services are provided where the therapist is or where the client is, most times it’s where the client is. So, having to make sure your either licensed or getting that approval from the state where that client travels to, or where you are physically. But, even with insurances that they, they regulate it as well, and they might require a certain system to go through, it has to be HIPAA compliant system but they might require a third party. That’s really important especially for people looking for telehealth to know, and what you avenue you have to go down. But, yeah, every state regulates it differently, it’s interesting.”

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