GDPR is the European Union’s new General Data Protection Regulation. It takes effect on 25th May 2018 and from that date I am required to ensure that I provide a data protection and privacy statement to all clients. In it (amongst other things) we confirm what information I hold about you and how I am permitted to use it. For more information please visit the website of the Information Commissioner’s Office www.ico.org.uk
Under GDPR you have certain rights:
I am a BACP Accredited Counsellor and Psychotherapist providing a private counselling service.
Upon enquiring about therapy, basic personal information will be collected for contact and identification reasons. I need to keep your contact details to be able to get in touch with you to offer or alter appointments and to send appointment reminder requests if you would like them.
I collect and store personal information such as your name, email address, phone number, date of birth, address and name of GP (we would only contact your GP under certain circumstances (please see separate section on Confidentiality).
I will keep notes of what we discuss in therapy, to remind me of the work we are doing when I next see you. The notes are used solely for the delivery of a therapy service to you.
I use a client management database (Write Upp) which is GDPR compliant. I use this to store your personal details, make and record appointments in an online diary system, and create invoices.
I also record any contact with third parties e.g. a GP. For more information on this please see my page on confidentiality.
You can opt out of cookies by choosing not to accept them from the pop-up that is displayed upon arrival to the website, or by changing your browser settings (visit your browsers FAQ page for help on this.)
We do not use any cookies that can identify an individual user via IP.
This website has an SSL certificate.
If you use the contact form on my website to make an initial enquiry this information is kept securely and in an encrypted format.
Any paper information including contracts signed by a client are kept in a locked filing cabinet.
Clinical notes are kept digitally in the client management database as detailed above. These are password protected and accessible only to me.
I use the client management database online diary. This is password protected, on a mobile phone which is also password protected.
In accordance with insurance guidelines I will keep your notes for 7 years, after which they are destroyed. If you are under 18 at the time of therapy I keep your notes for 7 years from the date of your 18th Birthday.
If you would like to amend any of the contact details I hold about you then please tell me or email email@example.com and I will amend your records.
I recognise that on rare occasions clients may wish to exercise their rights under the General Data Protection Regulation May 2018 and request a copy of any data I hold about you (a subject access request). Sometimes during counselling, information is provided by more than one individual. In these cases I will only release information if consent has been given by all of the individuals involved. If at any time you wish to exercise your right under the GDPR you should put your request in an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and provide evidence of your identity such as a copy of your passport or driver’s licence and proof of your address. When I receive your written request and evidence of identity I will respond to your request within 30 calendar days.
If you wish to transfer your records to another therapist/organisation then please put any requests in an email to email@example.com
I take your privacy seriously and will take all reasonable steps to ensure the protection of your data. In the event of a data breach I would follow GDPR guidelines and notify you and the ICO within 72 hours.
Under the GDPR guidelines you have the right to be forgotten and your information deleted. Please note that your right to be forgotten may not override the legal requirements to keep clinical notes for the mandatory periods. You can request a copy of any data held about you by submitting a subject access request as detailed above.
Some people come to counselling with a definite idea of what they would like to talk about and know what problems are standing in their way. Some people come because their GP has suggested that counselling might help.
A lot of people come because they are feeling unhappy in some way but are not sure why. I will help you gently unpick what is going on in your life and try to help you find a way out.×
Unlike some of the media portrayal of psychotherapy and counselling, what I do is very down to earth. You will be sitting in a chair, not lying on the couch, and I do not record endless notes of what you say.
Often people feel a bit nervous of coming to counselling, particularly if it is the first time you have talked about your problems. I will try to make you feel comfortable about talking and to go at a pace that suits you.×
Whether you’re a concerned individual or family member, checking browser history is a handy way to look back into the past. It’s also a pretty easy thing to do, regardless of the browser you’re using.
You can follow this link and get to know your browsers to secure your searches and keep them private.×