We provide an evidence based intervention, Functional Family Therapy (FFT), to families on the edge of care. This is a well recognised intervention with a research underpinning and strong outcomes but it has always been delivered in people’s homes.
In the lockdown and largely since we have adapted to online working. Supplying laptops, data and portals when needed. Adapting the therapeutic engagement to hold families in the room. Therapists have to bring more of themselves to the therapy to engage and to pick up on cues, body language and reactions. So far the outcomes are good. Some prefer online to face to face, whilst others have required a blended approach of some face to face contact in the early engagement phase, even if it is a doorstep socially distanced interaction to say hello or to have a walk before moving to online working.
The developers of FFT never envisioned it going online and necessity has made this happen. We are saving money on time and travel, we are seeing cases complete successfully but what happens post pandemic, can we retain the gains or we will default back to face to face as the always option? We have employed a researcher to help us to understand the strengths and difficulties of this new way of working so that we can know much more about when and how it will work as well as when it may not, including just how much face to face engagement might then lead to successful online working