Can an Online Psychiatrist Help with Medication Management?

Oct 15, 2020Blog

Can an Online Psychiatrist Help with Medication Management?

With mental health services more accessible than ever, lots of people are scouring the internet for a professional that’s right for them. You should know that an online psychiatrist helps you differently than therapists and psychologists do. In addition to offering talk therapy, your psychiatrist can prescribe medication. They help you learn to manage your medication and, in some cases, gradually ease you off of it.

You might be wondering how effective online treatment even is. Let’s explore why telepsychiatry is a great option — and how your online psychiatrist can help with medication management.


Benefits of Online Psychiatry Services

While primary care doctors are beginning to offer telemedicine services, so are psychiatrists and other mental health professionals. Virtual care is becoming more and more popular for two main reasons.


#1: No Commute Time

For patients with anxiety, depression, or other fear-based conditions, leaving the house can become burdensome. Virtual appointments, on the other hand, are easy to go to. This also makes it easier for patients in rural areas to get the help they need. Since there is no need to arrange childcare, transportation, or work arrangements, patients are more likely to attend their visits for high-quality care.


#2: Increased Patient Comfort

Since a patient is seeing a psychiatrist from the comfort of their home, they feel much more at ease. They do not have to navigate an unfamiliar setting and they are able to seek help privately. As a result, many patients feel more comfortable relating personal information to an online psychiatrist.


Is an Online Psychiatrist Allowed to Prescribe Medication?

Psychiatrists are still allowed to prescribe medicine remotely — but now they can prescribe controlled substances under certain conditions. Before the pandemic, a psychiatrist was not allowed to prescribe controlled medications if they hadn’t met a patient in person first.

The DEA has made an exception due to our public health emergency. Psychiatrists can prescribe controlled medicine as long as:

  • The appointment is two-way, done in real time, and done through an audio-visual medium
  • The psychiatrist is acting according to the law and as they usually would in their practice

Controlled substances are ones that pose a high risk of addiction. During this emergency, online psychiatrists are allowed to prescribe controlled medicines such as:

  • Benzodiazepines, like Valium, Xanax, and Klonopin
  • Controlled prescriptions for ADHD, like Adderall and Ritalin
  • Hypnotics for insomnia, like Ambien
  • Antipsychotic medication, like Seroquel

Uncontrolled substances are ones that do not pose the same risk of abuse or addiction. Psychiatrists are still allowed to prescribe:

  • Certain ADHD medications, like Straterra
  • Antidepressants, like Zoloft and Prozac

Keep in mind that only psychiatrists in your home state can treat and prescribe you medication. Even if you commute to other states for work, you are only allowed to get prescription medication from a psychiatrist in your home state. Some online platforms might not allow their professionals to prescribe controlled medicine either.


Looking for Holistic Mental Health Treatments?

Here at Mind & Soul, we offer psychiatry services alongside natural medicine options. We can offer you a combined approach of Traditional Chinese Medicine, psychotherapy, and medication management. Reach out to us today to discuss your symptoms and devise a treatment plan.