The cornerstone of the work undertaken in counselling is the therapeutic alliance between the client and the therapist.
Developing trust in this relationship is crucial for the quality of work entered into and the client’s process. Nevertheless in accordance with the Code of Ethics and Practice laid down by The APCP, there are a couple of important limitations to the confidentiality of the therapy:
One exception would be if I believe you are going to cause harm to yourself or others but I will endeavour to obtain your permission before a breach of confidentiality in this circumstance. Similarly we would also discuss the best way to proceed if I am informed of unreported child sex abuse where the abuser is still alive, as I am legally and ethically obligated to report this, regardless of when the abuse occurred.
Regular supervision ensures the quality and effectiveness of my work is maintained and supported, with any personal details which might make the client identifiable to my supervisor being withheld.
Personal Privacy Statement and GDPR:
The General Data Protection Regulation came into effect on 25/05/2018 and concerns personal data about each client attending Karuna Counselling services. The GDPR sets new standards for the collection, protection and retention of personal data. Personal Data collected includes the following information given by each client at the beginning of the counselling sessions:
Name; Address; Contact phone numbers; Date of birth; Medical details / GP details.
When you request counselling sessions with me and we agree to proceed with this work, we enter into a contract together. When you share your personal data with me, it is for the purpose of helping me to work effectively with you. All information given is entirely your choice. I have a legitimate interest in collecting the information you share in order to do my job most effectively and in line with guidelines for good practice from APCP.
I have your phone number/your email address stored on my database. This is essential so that I can contact you regarding any changes or cancellations to appointment times. All my digital devices are password protected and encrypted.
Alongside the personal data, which you have shared with me, I keep very brief written notes on our counselling sessions. These notes are brief and are for the express purposes of reflecting on the therapy process, and the important themes recurring in our work together. All my notes, and the above mentioned personal data are stored in a locked filing cabinet and identified only by initials.
The personal data and information from my written notes will only be disclosed to a third party with your consent. On rare occasions this data can be requested, e.g if a client is involved in legal proceedings.
Should a situation arise which necessitates this, I will always discuss it with you in advance.
My professional association (APCP) requires me to keep client notes for a period of 6-7 years. After this time period they will be destroyed using a secure shredding facility. You have the right to access your data via a Subject Access Request (SAR).
Please note that beyond the stringent measures taken to protect my clients’ privacy I can accept no responsibility for any breaches of confidentiality due to unsolicited contact made via any means of electronic communication.