With regard to the use of personal information:
My lawful basis of processing this data is one of Legitimate Interest. I am bound by the requirements of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) and the British Society of Clinical Hypnotherapy (BSCH) and hold my clients’ therapy data under the Ethical Framework of my professional bodies.
As the controller of processing your personal data, I collect the following data: Name, address, telephone numbers, email address, date of birth, health information including medical history, working hypothesis and process notes.
For legitimate purposes I will retain your notes for 7 years after your last appointment and for 7 years after a child’s 18th birthday. After this period, you can ask me to delete your records if you wish.
Your paper records are kept in locked filing cabinets and any electronic data is kept on an external drive, which is also kept in a locked filing cabinet.
I keep your personal data ie. name, address and phone number separately from notes taken, which are anonymous and only identifiable by client number. I am bound by client confidentiality and will never share your data with anyone at any time. In exceptional circumstances, your data will only be released with your written consent.
I do not use your data for marketing purposes.
I will hold your mobile number under your first name in a mobile phone for the duration of your therapy. This is for ease of contact but will be deleted once your therapy sessions have ceased. If you would prefer that I don’t hold your number in this way you have the right to request removal and I will erase your details from the phone. Appointments will be recorded in my diary using first names only.
I will only contact you by email if you have emailed me initially and I have no other way of contacting you unless you instruct me otherwise. Electronic communication is not totally secure, and I cannot be held responsible for damage or loss caused by viruses or for communications which are corrupted or altered after dispatch. I do not hold any emails in electronic form and only print and store emails with your records if appropriate to your therapy. You have the right to see what personal data of yours I hold, and you can also ask me to correct any factual errors.
I want you to be confident that I will treat your personal data responsibly, and that everything is being done to ensure that no person has access to your data other than myself.
If you feel that I am mishandling your personal data in some way, you have the right to complain. Complaints need to be sent in writing to me. Please call me on the above number for the address to send the complaint to.
If you are not satisfied with my response, then you have the right to raise the matter with the Information Commissioner’s Office.
The content of your sessions is entirely confidential. The only exceptions to this rule are where there is a requirement by law, a risk of serious harm to yourself or others, or where you give consent for the confidence to be broken.
I also ask that you, as my client, keep the content of our sessions private and do not use them for any other reason, unless discussed with me and my agreement is obtained in writing.
The BACP Ethical Framework for Good Practice requires me to obtain regular supervision of my work, which is carried out within anonymous disclosure.