Call us


One of the questions that I am often asked by families who live in rural or regional areas is about the remote delivery of psychological therapy.

  • Will treatment offered via telephone or skype help my child?
  • Will it be effective?

These are fair enough questions, and they’re exactly what I would ask if I were going to consider seeking help from a health professional remotely.

It is pretty widely accepted that psychological treatment is the recommended treatment for children and adolescents with OCD or anxiety disorders.  However, many families find it difficult to access specialist psychological treatment for a variety of reasons, including their geographical location.


Telehealth aims to make specialist healthcare services more accessible to the people who need it.  Telehealth involves the use of digital technologies (such as telephones, computers or mobile devices), to access health care services remotely.  It is a rapidly growing area of healthcare practice.

Within our clinic, telehealth aims to make psychological treatment for anxiety disorders and OCD accessible to families who live far away from specialist clinical psychologists (or who live close by but for other reasons find attendance at a clinic difficult or impractical).


We rely on research to help us to understand whether treatment delivered remotely is as effective as offering treatment face-to-face.

One research study we did was to compare telephone delivery of psychological therapy for children and adolescents with OCD, to face-to-face delivery of psychological therapy.  We provided psychological treatment to almost 80 adolescents with OCD. Half of them received telephone therapy. The other half received therapy in the clinic. We carefully assessed their symptoms of OCD at regular intervals throughout treatment, and we continued to assess their symptoms for up to 12 months after the therapy ended.  We found that both forms of therapy were equally as good in helping these adolescents to overcome their OCD.

We also asked each family what they liked about the way their therapy was offered. Many families who received their treatment via telephone told us that they appreciated the convenience of the treatment, and they felt that they made a strong connection with their telephone therapist.  Funnily enough, families who were offered therapy in the clinic also told us that they made a strong connection with their therapist!

The bottom line?

Telehealth is an effective and convenient way of providing psychological therapy for children and adolescents with OCD or anxiety disorders.

If you would like to read the scientific report that summarises this study, please click on the link below, or contact us and we can forward a copy of the paper to you.

Link to article on Science Direct

If you have questions about telehealth or about psychological therapy when delivered via the telephone or Skype, please contact us.

By Dr Cynthia Turner

Clinical Psychologist at The Moore Centre, Brisbane