COVID-19 Psychological Service Protocol
The following protocol for psychological service delivery during the COVID-19 pandemic was developed based on the review of guidelines from the College of Psychologists of BC, the Provincial Health Officer (PHO), the Ministry of Health, the BC Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC), and the property management company (Aquilini). As the pandemic evolves and guidelines change, the following information may be adjusted accordingly.
General Guiding Principle
The general guiding principle for service delivery during the COVID-19 pandemic is that “in-person services must only proceed when the anticipated benefits of such services outweigh the risks to the client and the health care provided.” Both in-person and telepsychology services will be available during the pandemic. If you prefer a telepsychology service delivery method as a general rule, please let me know this. I will consider the risks of in-person service and the appropriateness of telepsychology on a case-by-case basis and discuss this with you.
The terms laid out in this protocol are in addition to and therefore do not override the terms described in my Informed Consent for Psychological Treatment and Informed Consent for Telepsychology, which you accepted as part of using my services. You acknowledge that by attending sessions in my office, you consent to receiving services with an increased risk of exposure to COVID-19 through your presence in my office, our interactions, or any interactions you may have on your way to the office. Also, during the COVID-19 pandemic I am obliged to provide contact information of any of my patients to appropriate health authorities for contact tracing when required. Please let me know if you have any questions about this.
COVID-19 Infection Prevention
- Do not come to an in-person appointment if you or anyone you live with have any of the following symptoms: cough, sore throat, fever, shortness of breath, loss of taste or smell, vomiting or diarrhea. If you have any of these symptoms, use the self-screening tool: https://bc.thrive.health/covid19/en and call 811 or visit healthlinkbc.ca
- If you learn that you had contact with a (suspected or confirmed) COVID-19 infected person and you have been in my office in the past 14 days, please let me know this immediately.
- I reserve the right to ask any of my patients to use telepsychology methods for our sessions at any time to decrease risk of infection.
- For any in-person meetings, the use of surgical masks is currently mandated as per provincial health orders. I have masks available, should you need one for our appointment.
- Keep 2 meters/6 feet apart from any person in the building and avoid hand shaking.
- The elevators now have a capacity limit of 1-2 people at all times. Please plan accordingly and take the stairs when possible.
- No cash or cheques will be accepted, only electronic forms of payment.
Other Infection Control Measures
- The property management company has increased disinfecting and cleaning protocols, especially of high use touchpoints like buttons, door handles, and washrooms.
- Please use the hand sanitizing stations in the lobby when entering the building.
- The use of non-surgical masks is encouraged while walking through the building to/from my office.
- Patients have the choice to sit on a chair that will be disinfected after every use.