Responding to COVID-19 | Telehealth

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What is Telehealth?

The Center for Connected Health Policy defines telehealth as “Telehealth is a collection of means or methods for enhancing health care, public health and health education delivery and support using telecommunications technologies.”  Given the current public health emergency, telehealth has become an essential way to provide mental health services. 


Definitions and Evidence-Base

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality - The Evidence Base for Telehealth: Reassurance in the Face of Rapid Expansion During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Center for Connected Health Policy National Telehealth Policy Resource Center

Telehealth Resource Centers: A Framework for Defining Telehealth 


Here we highlight MHTTC training and technical assistance products and resources related to telehealth, as well as a compilation of telehealth resources from other reputable organizations. 

MHTTC Upcoming Events:


Global MHTTC WebinarClinical Innovations in Telehealth: Providing Culturally Relevant Telehealth Mental Health Services for Latinos during a Pandemic

National Hispanic and Latino MHTTC

June 2, 10-11am PT / 1-2pm ET

Series takes place every Tues 10-11am PT / 1-2pm ET through 6/9/2020





Global MHTTC WebinarClinical Innovations in Telehealth: Telehealth and PTSD

Global MHTTC

June 9, 10-11am PT / 1-2pm ET







MHTTC Products and Resources:


CBT Telehealth Adaptations for Providers of Mental Health Care for Latino Populations National Hispanic and Latino MHTTC 

Due to the need for many mental health providers to transition to online service delivery as a result of COVID-19, this webinar will provide general guidance on the use of telehealth services. In particular, this webinar will focus on providing recommendations for adapting common Cognitive Behavioral Therapy tools (e.g., repeated assessment, homework tracking, etc.) for use with clients via telehealth. Special linguistic and cultural considerations for providers of Latino clients will also be presented throughout the webinar.

Clinical Innovations in Telehealth | Global MHTTC

Clinical Innovations in Telehealth Learning Series is a weekly online series targeting high-priority clinical issues for providers using telehealth. Experts in clinical care and telehealth devote the first segment of each hour-long session to a specific topic, then address questions submitted by registrants.

  • Session 1: Telehealth and Suicide Care - includes slide deck and FAQ
  • Session 2: Telehealth and CBT for Psychosis (recording coming soon!)
  • Session 3: Telehealth and Health Disparities (recording coming soon!)

Cultural and Linguistic Responsiveness in Telehealth | South Southwest MHTTC

This brief identifies issues to consider when conducting mental health services and supports through telehealth with culturally diverse communities and provides strategies to ensure that the national Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services (CLAS) standards continue to drive efforts towards culturally competent care. Now available in Spanish!

Engaging with Clients Over the Telephone and Using Text | Northeast and Caribbean MHTTC 

Amid the current COVID-19 social distancing and stay at home orders many behavioral health providers have quickly shifted their primary interactions with clients to remote engagement. For some, this means using video conferencing software to simulate an in-person meeting. However, for many people access to a computer or tablet and reliable internet service is not available. For these individuals you may need to engage with them primarily, or solely, through the phone via voice calls or texts. This tool will provide information about strategies for quality engagement with clients using the phone.

This guidance can be applied to your work during the COVID-19 public health emergency, as well as when engaging with clients who may live in remote, rural, and otherwise difficult to access areas. Please note that it is best to talk with your agency's administration to determine any potential issues or concerns with providing remote services, including, but not limited to, HIPAA compliance, reimbursement, and authorizations. 

EPLC | Online Discussion Series 2 - Telehealth 101 & A Provider’s Perspective on TeleMental Health New England MHTTC 

Recently, the New England MHTTC held an online discussion session led by Reid Plimpton, MPH and Terry Rabinowitz, MD, DDSIn this session, they discussed telehealth from a provider's perspective.  

Let's Look For The Silver Lining: Using Evidence Based Practices For Remote Telehealth | Great Lakes MHTTC

Looking for the silver lining: Resolving our ambivalence about using MI in telehealth? This webinar will discuss and help you to: 

  • Recognize the differences between using MI face-to-face or via telehealth 
  • Discuss solutions to common barriers
  • Prepare to use/improve your use of MI in the resolution of ambivalence via telehealth

Native Youth Telehealth Initiative | National American Indian and Alaska Native MHTTC

This is a recording of the Native Youth Telehealth Initiative Webinar, which took place on May 14, 2020. The recording begins at slide 12 of the presentation. Dr. George Baston, MHRD, Ed.D CTE, and Natasha Peterson, BS, covered how to implement telehealth using the “Let’s Talk Interactive” platform and opportunities to collaborate with the National American Indian and Alaska Native MHTTC.

An opportunity to participate in our Native Youth Telehealth Initiative, and receive intensive technical assistance, is announced in this webinar. Application information is given at the end of Dr. Baston's presentation. Six sites will be chosen from the applicants.

Providing Telehealth Services and Instruction to Students and Clients with a Focus on those with Developmental Disabilities and on the Autism Spectrum Northeast and Caribbean MHTTC 

The focus of this webinar is to provide the support and information that teachers, supervisors, BCBAs, therapists and other professionals supporting youth during Co VID 19 have been seeking. The challenges that Co VID 19 poses to clients and students will be discussed. Strategies for reaching and supporting clients via telehealth platforms and teaching students through the virtual classroom will be identified and discussed. The main focus will be on supporting individuals with developmental disabilities and autism during this difficult time. Individuals across the Autism Spectrum have specific needs and profiles that will be discussed and the supports and strategies needed to address their specific strengths and weaknesses will be explored.

Supporting WA State Behavioral Health Providers to Optimize Telehealth in Response to COVID-19 | Northwest MHTTC

The Northwest MHTTC and the Behavioral Health Training, Workforce and Policy Innovation Center of the BHI are partnering to present an 8-session telehealth learning series for behavioral health providers across the continuum of behavioral health care in Washington State in response to COVID-19. The webinar series will meet twice weekly for four weeks and will address a variety of topics related to telehealth, including operational and administrative issues (such as billing), equipment and technology requirements, and strategies to provide effective clinical care.

Telehealth Adapted Motivational Interviewing (MI) for Latino Populations National Hispanic and Latino MHTTC 

The current worldwide public health emergency has prompted many mental health providers to adapt to an online method of service delivery. In response to the changes demanded by COVID-19, this webinar will provide general guidance on the integration of Latinx cultural values and motivational interviewing principles via telehealth. Specifically, this webinar will focus on providing strategies for adapting motivational interviewing through a culturally affirming lens to enhance engagement and facilitate change.

Recording coming soon!

Telehealth Clinical and Technical Considerations for Mental Health ProvidersPacific Southwest MHTTC

The Pacific Southwest MHTTC’s new handbook is written for licensed behavioral health providers who are working to transition to telehealth care. In this time of rapid change, clinicians need quick, accessible information on telehealth basics and best practices. Developed in consultation with mental health providers in our region, this guide includes tips and checklists, research-informed considerations, and more resources.

Telehealth in a Public Health Emergency: A Quick Start Guide | Great Lakes MHTTC

Presenter Jonathan Neufeld, director of the Great Plains Telehealth Resource and Assistance Center, provides an overview of telehealth issues for behavioral health providers as they rapidly transition to virtual delivery of services and supports. Topics covered include definitions, modalities, and basics of delivering psychotherapy and other specialty mental health services. Journey Mental Health Center, based in Madison, WI, has rapidly expanded telehealth services to meet the needs of consumers across a wide array of settings and levels of care. This presentation highlights the considerations that were incorporated to promote safe, secure telehealth experiences. Journey team members Thomas McCarthy and Lisa Lizak presented a case study about the agency's shift to virtual services.

Telehealth Learning and Consultation (TLC) Tuesdays | Mountain Plains MHTTC, Mid-America MHTTC, and Mid-America ATTC

Hosted by the Mountain Plains MHTTC and the Mid- America MHTTC and ATTC, this weekly online series is for providers who are unfamiliar with telehealth. Our Technology Transfer Center (TTC) Network specialists will devote the first 20 minutes of each hour-long session to a specific topic, then address questions submitted by TTC Tuesday registrants. Recordings of the 20-minute presentations are posted below. FAQs for the whole series can be found here.

Telepsychiatry During COVID-19 | Southeast MHTTC

This fact sheet is a summary of the information shared in the SMI Advisor Webinar titled Telepsychiatry in the Era of COVID-19. The fact sheet covers the telepsych regulation changes that are currently in place during the COVID-19 pandemic, and covers equipment, platforms, and license information that may be helpful to mental health clinicians during this time. 

TeleSupervision: Clinical Supervision for Pandemic Times | Pacific Southwest MHTTC

This presentation provides a brief overview of best practices and strategies for telesupervision: clinical supervision provided via video or phone. Participants learn how to shift the frame of supervision and lay a clear foundation for expectations. Presenters address best practices for communicating through tele-modalities to ensure that supervisors can recreate nuanced communication practices akin to in-person approaches. This session explores ethical and legal considerations across a range of topics, from informed consent to managing crises that arise in supervisees’ clinical encounters. The context of the current global pandemic is woven in throughout the training.

The Role of Technology in Peer Support ServicesCentral East MHTTC

The purpose of this four-webinar series is to disseminate information and discuss applications of person-centered tools available to help engage and activate individuals with serious mental illness and/or substance use disorders in person-centered treatment and services.

Tools for Behavioral Health Professionals During a Public Health Crisis | Northeast and Caribbean MHTTC

A public health crisis can cause distress for all involved, including providers of behavioral health services. Attending to your personal well-being during this time is just as important as supporting the individuals you serve. Providers are encouraged to be aware of the toll that working with others in distress can have on their own mental well-being.

Virtual Learning Guide | Pacific Southwest MHTTC 

We are all experiencing a great deal of personal and professional change in the current environment. One of our many transitions is the shift to remote work and digital platforms. As our field quickly moves teaching and learning activities online, we offer this resource for designing and delivering effective and engaging digital learning.Developed by the Pacific Southwest MHTTC, this resource is structured as a workbook for facilitators. It includes tips, examples, and reflective questions for those who are leading online professional development and other group learning events. This guide provides technical and interactive strategies and approaches to virtual learning to support the mental and school mental health workforce.

In response to requests, we also recently provided two study sessions for us to explore the guide’s content together. Each session covered different sections of the guide.

What Peer Support Specialists Need to Know about Telehealth in the Current Crisis - Part 1 and Part 2Central East MHTTC

As peer support specialists seek to quickly and effectively offer digital peer support across the United States, it is important that they — and their organizations — know the practical aspects of using digital peer support to deliver support services. Hosted by the Central East MHTTC, this presentation covers topics including the latest scientific developments on digital peer support and presents guidelines and emerging best practices to support service users through remote and telehealth technologies.

Other Telehealth Resources From Reputable Organizations:


Fact Sheets/FAQs

Center for Connected Health Policy, National Telehealth Policy Resource Center

National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health


U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights


Telehealth for Mental Health

American Psychiatric Association and The American Telemedicine Association
Best Practices in Video-Conferencing-Based Telemental Health

California School-Based Health Alliance
School Telehealth Webinar Series | May 14, 19, 21, 27

Center of Excellence for Protected Health Information (CoE-PHI)
Telehealth and Privacy: Federal Guidance for SUD and Mental Health Treatment Providers
Webinar May 20 at 11am PT / 2pm ET - Understanding SAMHSA and OCR Guidance for Telehealth SUD & MH Services, and Update on the CARES Act

Center for Practice Innovations at Columbia Psychiatric, New York State Psychiatric Institute
Telehealth Tips: Managing Suicidal Clients During the COVID-19 Pandemic

National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention
Strengthening Faith Community Connectedness During the COVID-19 Pandemic

National Telebehavioral Health Institute 
Bibliography Telemental Health 

Northeast Telehealth Resource Center
Telehealth Resource Webliography for COVID-19 Pandemic

Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation
Using Telehealth to Identify and Manage Health And Substance Use Disorder Conditions in Rural Areas

Project ECHO
Best Practices in Adoption of Telehealth: COVID 19 and Beyond Mini Series | May 18, May 27, June 1

Rural Behavioral Health: Telehealth Challenges and Opportunities

SMI Adviser 

Suicide Prevention Resource Center
Treating Suicidal Patients During COVID-19: Best Practices and Telehealth

Zero Suicide Institute
Telehealth and Suicide Care During the COVID-19 Pandemic



Bringing Recovery Supports to Scale Technical Assistance Center Strategy (BRSS TACS)
Peers Supporting Recovery From Mental Health Conditions

Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Medicare Learning Network
Telehealth Services 

Great Plains Telehealth Resource and Assistance Center
Telehealth Start-Up and Resource Guide Version 1.1

National Consortium of Telehealth Resource Centers
COVID-19 Telehealth Toolkit

National Council for Behavioral Health
Resources and Tools for Addressing Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Rural Health Information Hub
Rural Prevention and Treatment of Substance Use Disorders Toolkit

Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) 60: Using Technology-Based Therapeutic Tools in Behavioral Health


COVID-19: Policy Announcements

American Society of Addiction Medicine
COVID-19 Supporting Access to Telehealth

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
Medicare Telemedicine Healthcare Provider Fact Sheet

***Institute for Innovation and Implementation, University of Maryland School of Social Work
COVID-19 Telehealth Medicaid Expansions: A State-by-State Guide (roll-over map; updated daily)

Office for Civil Rights, Department of Health and Human Services
Notification of Enforcement Discretion on Telehealth Remote Communications

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services 
Telemedicine and Prescribing Buprenorphine for the Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder

U.S. Department of Justice Drug Enforcement Administration
Use of Telemedicine While Providing Medication-Assisted Treatment 

COVID-19 Public Health Emergency Response and 42 CFR Part 2 Guidance


National Resources for Telehealth Information

American Telemedicine Association

Center for Connected Health Policy National Telehealth Policy Resource Center 

Center for Medicare & and Medicaid Services Medicare Telemedicine Health Care Provider Fact Sheet

Center for Technology and Behavioral Health

Health Information Technology, Evaluation, and Quality Center 

Health Information Technology Training and Technical Assistance Center

National Consortium of Telehealth Resource Centers

Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology

Rural Health Research Gateway

Telehealth Center of Excellence MUSC

Telehealth Center of Excellence UMMC

Telehealth Resource Centers

SAMHSA’s Disaster Distress Helpline is standing by 24/7 to support you during the pandemic & beyond. Toll-free, multilingual, & confidential support services are available to all residents in the U.S. & its territories. Call 1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746 to connect with a trained counselor.


Thank you to the Great Lakes MHTTC for helping curate the content on this page.