I’d like to familiarize everyone with what tele-behavioral health is so that you can have a meaningful reading experience. Tele-behavioral health is the process of providing behavioral therapy or psychotherapy remotely, utilizing video conferencing or text-based messaging. Millions of people’s mental health needs have been addressed by the means of tele-behavioral health, and I’d like you all to be aware of this valuable resource.
Tele-behavioral health is not subject to any one specific group of people; It is a universal resource. It does not discriminate against geographic location, income level, age, race, ethnicity, gender identity, nor sexual orientation. Tele-behavioral health has become a common tool that can be employed by anyone.
I have many friends that have found relief and guidance in tele-behavioral health resources, especially during the pandemic. Not only can they receive the necessary help they need, but they can do so at a distance. With the technology of tele-behavioral health, my friends who attend college away from home are able to not only maintain but improve their mental health with their primary caregiver. They can easily be connected on their phone, tablet, or computer anywhere to address their emergent needs. College students are just one demographic that can benefit from tele-behavioral health.
You may not know that even our homeless population can access tele-behavioral health support. Specifically, agencies who utilize our Apportis platform can connect tele-behavioral health professionals with homeless individuals as our solution does not need Wi-Fi to function. Oftentimes, these homeless men, women, and children’s mental illnesses are heightened by their stressful living situation, so tele-behavioral health is a vital resource for them to have access to.
At Apportis, we are continuously working with agencies and organizations to help connect tele-behavioral health services with those in need. Tele-behavioral health has become a new norm in our society, and we are here to be a leader in those developments.
Hopefully you have read our last blog (Tele-Medicine vs. Tele-Behavioral Health), so you understand more about Apportis’s tele-behavioral health platform. We have all had good and bad days that come and go, but there is no reason why a serious long-term mental illness should be left unaddressed. It is no secret that the pandemic has been difficult for everyone. Most of us have experienced isolation, loss, depression, anxiety and even panic and regret. I, too, have felt these hardships, so it is important to know that we are not alone in those feelings.
That is why our Apportis team is dedicated to providing software to agencies that deliver social services and behavioral health. Our platform is easily accessible whether you are a student struggling at home, a farmer experiencing difficulties in your rural community, a homeless individual without a warm shelter, etc. There are no bounds to our efforts to connect with agencies that can help those in need.
Let me provide you with an example of how easily our platform connects people with the services they need:
Older individuals in our population are especially vulnerable during these times of crisis, so many are relying on virtual healthcare and means of communication. An older individual in need of behavioral healthcare can easily be connected with a tele-behavioral health professional through an agency or organization of their choice who utilizes Apportis’s software. They can then receive help from the safety of their own home. This also means they can avoid physical contact with possible infections, including COVID-19, that are spread throughout hospitals and doctors’ offices. Aside from COVID-19, they can also get help safely by avoiding the icy roads and sidewalks that come with winter weather.
That is just one example of who Apportis’s platform can serve. As a college student, it comforts me to know that any university can use Apportis’s software for their students and faculty. I understand the stressful demands that come with earning a college degree, so I encourage universities to utilize our behavioral health resource to care for their students’ health and wellness.
The need for tele-behavioral health has grown exponentially since the development of the COVID-19 Pandemic. Apportis is here to tailor our software platform so that agencies can meet the specific needs of those they serve, including you!
Tele-medicine and tele-behavioral health have become prevalent terms in society’s everyday life, but what do they mean? The demand for virtual health care options has risen exponentially in recent years, and many of us don’t know the difference between these two terms. In my personal experience, I used to glaze over these terms simply because ‘I had an idea of what they meant.’ However, knowing what they are has proven to be of value because I can make educated decisions about my family’s and my necessary care.
Tele-Medicine: “Medical care provided remotely to a patient in a separate location using two-way voice and visual communication (as by computer or cell phone)” (Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary)
Tele-Behavioral Health: The process of providing behavioral therapy or psychotherapy remotely, utilizing video conferencing or text-based messaging
Essentially, tele-behavioral health is a sub-category of the broader tele-medicine scope. It focuses more directly on behavioral health disorders, such as anxiety, depression, and PTSD to name a few. The National Institute of Mental Health reports, “In 2019, there were an estimated 51.5 million adults aged 18 or older in the United States with AMI (a mental illness). This number represented 20.6% of all U.S. adults” (National Institute of Mental Health). I have tried my best to help my friends with their mental health challenges – but sometimes a friend’s loving advice just isn’t enough.
As a result, the importance of tele-behavioral health has grown with the increasing prevalence of mental health challenges and substance use disorders around the world. This form of healthcare can be accessed by anyone to provide them with the critical help they need.
At Apportis, we provide a HIPPA-certified tele-behavioral health platform to communities in need. Our software removes barriers to connect counselors, case managers, caregivers, and clinicians to those in need, and it provides that community with resources to thrive. Anyone can receive behavioral health advice through the Apportis software without the need of Wi-Fi. This means that we can assist those in urban, rural, and even homeless communities for their behavioral health needs.
We encourage everyone to learn more about tele-medicine and tele-behavioral health because we understand that everyone lives with their own challenges. You can read more blogs about the previously mentioned topics, in addition to various other health-related subjects, on our website Apportis.com under the “BLOG” tab. We would love to assist you with your behavioral health needs, so please contact us with any inquires and questions you may have. We can make an impact together in tele-behavioral healthcare!
National Institute of Mental Health. “Mental Illness.” National Institute of Mental Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Jan. 2021, www.nimh.nih.gov/health/statistics/mental-illness.shtml.
“Telemedicine.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/telemedicine. Accessed 31 Jan. 2021.
We all know that 2020 hasn’t necessarily been the start to the roaring 20’s that many of us imagined. It has been an infamous year many would like to forget. While there are many things to be spiteful about, we must approach this Thanksgiving as a time of reflection and optimism for the future. We should be celebrating the many milestones that have been accomplished during these times of unpredictability.
Just as everyone else, I have experienced many hardships throughout 2020. Those include the loss of my grandmother, the inability of my collegiate figure skating team to compete at our national competition, the heartache of being distanced from loved ones due to travel restrictions while away at college, and more. However, I have done my best to work through these obstacles, and I appreciate that this Thanksgiving gives me a chance to consider what I DO have in my life.
I am surely not the only person who has been conflicted with mental and physical struggles during this time. We should be embracing others, and encouraging them to break through their shells. I’d like to take time to consider the different ways in which this year has benefitted our community.
In a survey conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Juice Plus+, 66% of people polled said their family is closer than ever before as a result of the increased family time during quarantine. Families were forced out of their busy day-to-day routines and experienced milestones and interactions that they might not have had otherwise. For instance, 79% of parents surveyed said they’ve learned more about their children’s hobbies and passions during this time.
Furthermore, pet adoption rates have skyrocketed. Vast amounts of people took to pet adoptions during quarantine since they had more time at home to devote to a new animal. Additionally, these furry friends have aided people through the mental health struggles associated with COVID-19.
Countless companies transformed their typical production services to manufacture sanitizers, masks, ventilators, and more to help the world fight this virus. Vacuum maker Dyson, General Motors, and many other companies manufactured thousands of ventilators and other PPE for the community.
An innumerable amount of people broke out of the technological bubble that most of us live in and regained appreciation for the outdoors. Biking and hiking trials, lakes and rivers, and other outdoor spaces boomed this year as a safe alternative to travel and as a stress relief during COVID-19.
Additionally, studies show that some people feel less stress as they gained a more flexible schedule, escaped a strenuous commute to work/school, experienced more quality time with their family, and dodged dressing up everyday.
I ask that everyone be optimistic this Thanksgiving and think about what you DO have to be thankful for. No matter how big or small, every milestone in 2020 has left an impact on our lives, and we must learn from these experiences to grow for the future.
Red Ribbon Week is the nation’s largest and longest-running drug-abuse prevention campaign. This years’ theme is “Be Happy. Be Brave. Be Drug Free,” and the campaign is being celebrated from October 23rd through October 31st. Since 1985, Red Ribbon Week has encouraged America to live drug-free lives in order to facilitate the pathways for healthy, drug-free youth. They also provide educational opportunities to our youth to learn about drug prevention at an early age. Here is a link to resources the Red Ribbon Campaign offers.
Schools are a major force in creating awareness for the campaign as well. I remember participating in Red Ribbon Week activities every year during grade school. I can remember how important these assemblies, games, and other activities were to my school district, as it was their mission to take a stance in protecting their students from drug abuse.
At Apportis, we encourage community members of all ages to take part in the drug prevention campaign of Red Ribbon Week. It is never too early to educate others about the dangers of drug abuse.
Here are some ways that the Red Ribbon Campaign encourages the community to get involved:
- Plan a Red Ribbon “CruiseBy” – Have each participant decorate his or her car featuring the Red Ribbon Theme and drive through your neighborhood.
- Plant the Promise – Plant red flower bulbs which bloom in the Spring and serve as a reminder of the importance and the beauty of a drug free life.
- Share your best spoken word performance that incorporates use of the 2020 theme – Be Happy, Be Brave, Be Drug Free™ – Post it to Facebook or Instagram and add the hashtag #RedRibbonWeekSpokenWord. Contest begins October 23rd and ends October 31st.
- Enter the 2020 National Red Ribbon Week Photo Contest
- Nominate someone for the Enrique Camarena Red Ribbon Award – This annual award recognizes and honors individuals who personify Agent Camarena’s belief that one person can make a difference.
- Take the #BeHappyBeBraveBeDrugFree Social Media Challenge – Show us how you’re living drug free by dressing up like your favorite superhero and by snapping a picture and posting it to Social Media.
- Mask Challenge – Join the #RedRibbonMaskChallenge by wearing a Red Ribbon-Themed Mask During Red Ribbon Week, October 23-31.
- Ask Your Local Police Department, Health Department or Prevention Coalition to Host a Virtual Drug Presentation
- Plan A Building or Structure Illumination – Does your local landmark light up? How about your school, office building, local bridge or stadium? Find out if it can be turned red in honor of Red Ribbon Week.
- Celebrate Being Drug Free – Print out the Red Ribbon Theme sign, add your name, hold it up and post a photo that shows us you’re committed to living drug free.
- Family Table Time – Did you know that teens who eat dinner with their families are less likely to use drugs and alcohol?