Confidentiality is of paramount importance in counselling and psychotherapy. This policy describes my arrangements for collecting and storing information, in line with GDPR requirements.
I am the Data Controller, which means that only I have access to the information I keep. I am registered with the ICO (Registration Number: ZA530884).
I keep your personal details (name, address, phone and email address) and signed consent in a locked filing cabinet.
I keep your anonymous initial assessment form and brief notes from our sessions separate to your personal details.
You have the right to request a copy of your notes and personal information.
I keep client records for seven years after counselling has finished, after which they are securely destroyed.
If we exchange emails your email address and copies of any emails will be stored in my email system.
Your phone number is stored with your Christian name and last name initial on a smart phone so that we can communicate about session times / delays / cancellations. I may also contact you by text to remind you about any missed payments.
The information I collect from you will not be shared with third parties unless there is an immediate risk that you will take your own life or endanger others. I will make my best endeavour to discuss this with you first. I am also required by law to breach confidentiality if you disclose information about acts of terrorism and proceeds of drug / arms and people trafficking.
As a Registered Member of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) I work within their Ethical Framework. You can view this framework and the BACP complaints procedure here: https://www.bacp.co.uk
I attend regular clinical supervision where I may discuss our work together. Your identity will never be disclosed during these discussions. My supervisor is also a member of the BACP and bound by the same Code of Ethics.
You have the right to withdraw from counselling at any time. For more information on your rights under GDPR legislation please go to the Information Commissioner’s Office: https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/guide-to-the-general-data-protection-regulation-gdpr/individual-rights/