Course Summary

Practice Level: Intermediate

IMPORTANT: This course meets California’s one-time requirement of three hours of coursework in the provision of mental health services via telehealth for mental health providers. Mental health professionals who are NOT licensed (or are not seeking license) in California should not take this course and instead should take Ethics and Telemental Health.

Prior to the pandemic, telemedicine was gaining traction but usually only in select instances and geographic areas. The use of telehealth necessitated by the pandemic has transformed into a more permanent way of providing care in many settings.

The healthcare industry is widely experiencing a digital transformation and behavioral health practitioners are adjusting quickly to the demands of providing services via virtual platforms. However, this type of service provision carries unique ethical challenges. Through the use of potential scenarios, literature review, and discussion, this learning material will address the specific ethical challenges, requirements, and demands of telehealth services.

This course is intended for California professionals and may be used to meet the training requirements for the provision of mental health services via telehealth, which must include content about law and ethics related to telehealth. The course provides information and summaries from the Statutes and Regulations Relating to the Practices of Professional Clinical Counseling, Marriage and Family Therapy, Educational Psychology, Clinical Social Work. For California marriage and family therapists, professional clinical counselors, social workers, and educational psychologists  failing to comply with the procedures set forth in the Business and Professions Code Sections 1815.5 and 2290.5 when delivering health care via telehealth constitutes unprofessional conduct.

Course Format

This course contains downloadable online lessons (PDF) and a practice test. When you’re ready, purchase the course by clicking the “Add To Cart” or “Enroll” button. This will let you take the test, complete the course evaluation and receive your certificate for CE credits.

Learning Objectives

  1. Define terminology basic to telemental health, computers, and technology.
  2. Differentiate types of computer security measures.
  3. Identify common ethical nuances of telehealth service delivery.
  4. Describe best practices in telemental health.
  5. Recognize risk management and ethical conduct in telemental health with children, couples, families, and groups as well as in the provision of supervision via videoconferencing.
  6. Identify relevant information related to telehealth from legislative bodies, professional standards, and ethics codes from the NASW, APA, ACA, and NBCC.

Course Syllabus


A Shift to Telehealth

Computer Basics

Computer Terminology Basics

Computer Security

Telemental Health Technology Basics

Types of Technology

Telemental Health Practice Technology Considerations

Secured Versus Unsecured Technology


Commonly Used Technology in Psychotherapy

Common Telehealth Ethical Encounters

Challenges Unique to Telehealth Sessions

Creating an Informed Consent Form for Telehealth

Best Practices in Telemental Health

Offer Orientation to the Technology Before Beginning Treatment

Video Etiquette

Video Space

Video Presentation Skills

Risks of Teletherapy

Multicultural Considerations

Risk Management in Documenting Telehealth Encounters

Ethical Issues in Telehealth with Children, Couples, and Groups

Working with Children Virtually

Working with Couples and Families

Group Counseling via Telehealth

Supervision via Videoconferencing

Standards Pertinent to Telehealth

Practicing Across State Lines

Telehealth Training



Appendix A: New/Amended California Laws Regarding Telehealth


Claudia Dewane, LICSW, D.Ed.

Claudia Dewane, D.Ed., LCSW is a retired Associate Professor in the School of Social Work, Temple University, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. She received a Doctorate in Adult Education and Health Psychology from Penn State University, and a Masters in Social Work from Columbia University. She has a Certificate in Advanced Clinical Supervision from Smith College School of Social Work. She is the founder of Clinical Support Associates, providing supervision, consultation and training to professional social workers. She has presented numerous workshops on clinical, supervisory, and ethical issues in social work. She worked for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) for several years in clinical, supervisory and policy capacities. She currently works as a therapist and clinical supervisor.

Teresa Crowe, PhD, LICSW

Teresa Crowe, PhD, LICSW is a licensed clinical social worker in the District of Columbia and Maryland. She is a professor of social work at Gallaudet University and teaches practice, theory, and research in the MSW program. Her recent research focuses on deaf and hard of hearing populations, especially in the areas of behavioral health, intimate partner violence, telemental health, well-being, and help-seeking.

Accreditation Approval Statements is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. maintains responsibility for this program and its content., provider #1115, is approved as an ACE provider to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Regulatory boards are the final authority on courses accepted for continuing education credit. ACE provider approval period: 08/08/21-08/08/24. Social workers completing this course receive 3 ethics continuing education credits. has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 6991. Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. is solely responsible for all aspects of the programs.

Courses have been approved by, as a NAADAC Approved Education Provider, for educational credits. NAADAC Provider #91345 is responsible for all aspects of the programming.

We are committed to providing our learners with unbiased information. CE4Less never accepts commercial support and our authors have no significant financial or other conflicts of interest pertaining to the material.

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