Stepping Stones NECounselling in Morpeth, Northumberland

Privacy Policy

Coronavirus and working online

Because of the latest developments, all counselling sessions will now be carried out via video link (Zoom) or, in some cases, telephone. Zoom is a stable and secure platform which ensures confidentiality is protected. Client guidelines will be emailed prior to the first meeting to help with installation and to ensure that a suitable "therapeutic space " is created in the home.

GDPR Policy

The following client information is stored by Stepping Stones NE: client name and address; telephone number and email address; GP details; questionnaire with life history; process notes; factual emails and texts (mostly about cancellations and re-scheduling of appointments).

All customer data kept by Stepping Stones NE is kept both in paper and digital format. Client data is also gathered via emails (direct, through Counselling Directory or Stepping Stones NE website) and occasionally What’s App. Client mobile numbers and texts are also stored on mobile phone (using client initials).

Client information is not shared with any third parties and is used internally for statistical purposes, for communication with the client and potentially for informing the client of relevant seminars (based on having received their written consent). When clients have been referred through their medical insurance or EAP agency some factual information may be shared when communicating with the insurer.

Confidentiality

All confidential information is held by Stepping Stones NE in accordance with the GDPR, 2018.

Everything that you discuss with your therapist is confidential. Confidentiality will only be broken if there is concern about your safety or the safety of someone else or where we are instructed to do so by a Court of Law. During the pandemic, your personal details may be shared with the Track and Trace service. We will always endeavour to speak to you about this first.

I discuss my clinical work with my supervisor. This is to ensure that she is offering you the best service possible. These conversations are bound by confidentiality and you will only be referred to by your first name.

Notes are also kept of each session. These are kept in digital form in an encrypted secure system. These notes are for the purpose of our sessions only and help me to keep track of everything that is being discussed. These notes must be kept securely a minimum of for seven years after your therapy comes to an end.

In line with GDPR you have the right to request sight of your session notes. Should you wish to view your notes while you are still in therapy please discuss this with me. If you would like to receive a copy of your notes at any time during the seven years that they will be held after your therapy comes to an end, please email [email protected] or call 07954 099 770 to make this request.

Registration

Stepping Stones NE is registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) reference ZA319147.

Your rights

Any personal data retained by Stepping Stones NE is kept in accordance with the GDPR, 2018.

Under these guidelines you have the following rights

The right to request access to your data
You can request to view the information that we hold about you (contact details, appointment logs etc.) at any time. If during therapy you would like to see your session notes, please make this request Anna Dallavalle directly. Should you require a copy of your notes after your therapy has come to an end you can make this request by emailing [email protected] or calling on 07954 099 770.

The right of rectification
At any point during your time in therapy or during the seven years thereafter, while we retain your records, you have the right to request amendments to your contact details or session notes. This right can be exercised by speaking directly to me.

The right to be forgotten
You can request that I delete and confidentially destroy the information that I hold about you and your sessions at any time.

Instances where I would not be able to comply with your request are as follows:

a) It is necessary for me to retain these records in order to continue providing an effective service
b) I am compelled to retain these records by a Court of Law
c) I require these records in order to establish, exercise or defend legal claims

Breaches of data protection

In the event of any breach of our data protection policies, we will notify you and the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) within 72 hours and will seek to rectify this immediately.

Registration

Stepping Stones NE is registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) reference ZA319147.


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