I heard a talk today on CBT4CBT: Computer Based Training for Cognitive Behavior Therapy where substance abuse treatment is supplemented with On-line real-time psychotherapy groups. I hope I'm saying this right.
The patients go to regular appointments, but in addition, there is an on-line group. The patients and a therapist all 'meet' at a pre-arranged time. There is a camera on the therapist, so his image pops up in the corner of the screen. He can write on the main part of the screen. The participants call in over their computers (each is given a microphone). They're aren't seen, but they have screen names, and they talk one at a time: they press a button to speak and release it when they are done, assuring that people don't talk over one another (I could use one of these buttons in real life). All the patients liked it and they did as well as the controls who had real-life treatment without the supplemental on-line group.
Here's a link if you want to read about this stuff.
And the talk I heard used a platform designed by eGetgoing, an online substance abuse treatment service. I learned something new today.