How to Create a Social Media Policy for Your Psychotherapy Practice

A 90 minute Presentation with Clinical Psychologist Dr. Keely Kolmes

Looking for the 3 video tips answering therapists’ ethical FAQ’s about social media? Click here to watch them.

The digital revolution has raised many issues for today’s mental health practitioner. Technological advances have moved faster than therapy associations can keep up and when digital guidelines are created, they are quickly outdated by new developments.

In particular, social media has been a challenging area for many therapists to navigate.

You may not be aware of the latest thinking in regard to digital ethics for therapists. Or perhaps you are starting to use social media for professional purposes, but you’re not completely confident how to manage interactions with your clients if they contact you online. Maybe you’ve been using social media for a while, and you wish there were a way you could let your clients know what’s ok and not ok when interacting with you on social media.

For these reasons, and many more, Australia Counselling is proud to present an exciting and innovative professional development opportunity for counsellors, psychotherapists, psychologists and other mental health practitioners and professionals called How to Create a Social Media Policy for Your Psychotherapy Practice.

In this 90-minute presentation, Dr. Keely Kolmes will introduce you to advanced ethical decision-making on Internet issues and take you step-by-step through how to create your very own social media policy that you can use in your psychotherapy practice.

This will be a dynamic presentation hosted by Australia Counselling founder Clinton Power. There will be time for you to ask Dr. Kolmes about your burning digital ethics questions as well as learn about the landscape of digital ethics in the 21st Century.


Dr. Keely KolmesAbout the Presenter: Keely Kolmes, Psy.D. is a licensed psychologist in private practice in San Francisco, CA. She is the former Digital Director for APA Division 42, Psychologists in Independent Practice and currently serves on the Ethics Committee of the California Psychological Association. She writes, does research, and provides consultation and training on clinical and ethical issues related to social networking and technology. Her Private Practice Social Media Policy has been frequently cited and has been a recommended sample document for clinicians by the APA Insurance Trust. She has published a New York Times Op-Ed on the challenge of consumer reviews of mental health services and has been quoted in The Washington Post, Forbes, and BBC News on the Internet and mental health. Her professional website is and she can also be found on Twitter as @drkkolmes.

Presentation Outline

This webinar will be divided into two parts:

1. An introduction to Ethical Issues on the Internet

  • General principles: The General Principles of APA Ethics for psychologists as a way to frame how we think ethically.
  • Informed Consent: What does this entail? When does it occur?
  • Confidentiality: Where are we most likely to compromise confidentiality online?
  • Multiple Relationships: Why do we avoid them and where might we create dual relationships online?
  • Consultation: How do we appropriately seek professional consultation on groups and listserves?
  • Soliciting Testimonials: Learn the do’s and don’ts of testimonials for clinicians.

2. Creating your own Social Media Policy

  • Email & Interacting: Important communication considerations for engaging with clients.
  • Contact/Friend/Follow Requests: How do you plan to respond to contact, friend and follow requests?
  • Blogging, Wall Posts, and Comments: What are the benefits and pitfalls of allowing the public to comment on your social media platforms?
  • Search Engines: Is it OK to Google your clients? Under what circumstances?
  • Online Reviews: What can we do about online reviews
  • Telemental Health: What should you be aware of if you provide telemental health services?
Valerie L. Shebroe, Ph.D.I have had the pleasure of hearing Dr. Kolmes present on a number of different topics, and have also followed her thoughtful writing on Social Media Policy Development.  She is at the forefront of ethics, policy development, use of technology and clinical practice.  As a mid-career psychologist and “late adapter,”  she has helped me think through issues related to social media, my own privacy, and the client’s privacy as well.  Early career professionals can also benefit from her workshops as they have grown up with social media and due to less experience, may need more assistance to navigate the intersection of clinical and social media issues. There are only a few presenters in my 25+ year career that I can say I would go hear, no matter what the topic, and Dr. Kolmes is on my short list.  As a researcher, thinker and clinician, Dr. Kolmes is a dynamic presenter who integrates technology, research, ethics, and practice. -Valerie L. Shebroe, Ph.D. Independent Practice Psychologist



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Who is this presentation for?

This presentation is suitable for any counsellors, psychotherapists, psychologists or other mental health practitioners and professionals who work with clients therapeutically.

What’s the format of the presentation?

This webinar is hosted by Australia Counselling founder Clinton Power with the presenter Dr. Keely Kolmes. The presentation consists of interview style questions, along with Dr. Kolmes presenting with PowerPoint slides.

You will have the ability to submit questions during the live presentation and Dr. Kolmes will be answering them.

What’s included in the presentation?

You can download the mp3 recording to keep it for as long as you want, along with the PowerPoint slides.

Also included in your purchase is a full transcript of the presentation so you can download it as a PDF to your computer, as well as print it out and take notes.

What are the learning objectives of this webinar?

There are two primary learning objectives for this webinar, which are:

  1. Identify the ethical challenges that may arise from engaging in activities on the Internet.
  2. Construct a social media policy for a practice or agency to address potential boundary issues with clients.

What’s the cost?

The cost of this presentation, including the mp3 recording and PDF transcript is $47 AUD (Australian Dollars)

What’s the cost in US dollars?

With the current exchange rate the Australian dollar is a little lower than the US dollar, so this means that the cost is about US$45, depending on the exchange rate on the day you purchase the webinar. If you’re paying in US dollars, PayPal will tell you exactly what the amount is in US dollars before you complete the purchase.

Our guarantee to you

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We are so confident about the quality of our presentations that we back them with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

If for any reason you are  unhappy with the presentation, we will refund 100% of your payment if you let us know within 30 days of purchase.

Roy Huggins, MS, NCC, Director, Person-Centered TechI had the good fortune to attend Dr. Kolmes’ full-day ethics seminar on social media for mental health clinicians. I was struck by the depth of her knowledge of both practical and ethical issues, as well as her ability to communicate problems and solutions to an audience of primarily “digital immigrants.” It is clear that Dr. Kolmes understands these issues at an experiential level, and is not simply theorizing or parroting the work of others, although she has an extensive knowledge of the relevant literature. Indeed, her work is seminal in the field of “digital ethics.” It is difficult to train or consult on topics of modern ethics without referencing publications from Dr. Kolmes, especially her Social Media Policy and research around boundary crossings and confidentiality concerns online. I can confidently recommend her for speaking, training, consulting, and curriculum development in these areas.-Roy Huggins, MS NCC, Director, Person-Centered Tech

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