Your privacy is very important to me and you can be confident that your personal information will be kept safe and secure and will only be used for the purpose it was given to me. I adhere to current data protection legislation, including the General Data Protection Regulation (EU/2016/679) (the GDPR) and the Data Protection Act 2018.
This privacy notice tells you what I will do with your personal information from initial point of contact through to after your therapy has ended.
‘Data controller’ is the term used to describe the person/organisation that collects and stores and has responsibility for people’s personal data. In this instance, the data controller is me. I am registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) and my registration number is ZA561050.
I will review and update this privacy notice regularly to make sure it complies with the latest regulations and best practice.
2. My lawful basis for holding and using your personal information
The GDPR states that I must have a lawful basis for processing your personal data. There are different lawful bases depending on the stage at which I am processing your data. I have explained these below.
If you have had therapy with me and it has now ended, I will use legitimate interest as my lawful basis for holding and using your personal information. If you are currently having therapy or if you are in contact with me to consider therapy, I will process your personal data where it is necessary for the performance of our contract.
The GDPR also makes sure that I look after any sensitive personal information that you may disclose to me appropriately. This type of information is called ‘special category personal information’. The lawful basis for me processing any special categories of personal information is that it is for provision of health treatment (in this case counselling) and necessary for a contract with a health professional (in this case, a contract between me and you).
3. How I use your information
When you contact me with an enquiry about my counselling services and wish to arrange an initial consultation, I will ask you for your full name, telephone number and e-mail address. I collate these details in order to email you further information about my counselling services. I ask for your telephone number in case I need to contact you with regards to our initial consultation meeting at short notice. Alternatively, your GP or other health professional may send me your details when making a referral. If you decide not to proceed, I will ensure all your personal data is deleted within 48 hours. Please let me know if you would like me to delete this information sooner.
If you fill in the contact form on my website monikawaldecounselling.co.uk the data is sent via the server and is encrypted to me.
While you are accessing counselling
When you decide to take up counselling with me, I will collate some further personal details from you. These include your address, GP’s details and your next of kin name and their telephone number. Please ensure your next of kin is aware and is in agreement that I store their name and telephone number. I am asking you for these details in case an emergency occurs while you are in session with me. I will also ask you about any health conditions that I need to be aware of, in particular that need to be taken in consideration when taking part in Walk and Talk sessions. Please do let me know if there are any changes to your personal details.
Confidentiality in counselling is very crucial to me and an important part of developing trust between you and me. No information will be passed on to third parties without your consent, unless in exceptional circumstances. These are:
- When you give consent for the confidentiality to be breached.
- When law requires to breach confidentiality (e.g. compulsory disclosure under statute or court order)
- When I believe that your safety is at significant risk of harm. In these circumstances it
may be necessary to contact others such as your GP. I will let you know if I am concerned about your well-being.
- When I believe that another person’s safety is at significant risk of harm and I am unable to get your consent to report this.
- When information is disclosed relating to certain legal offences e.g., terrorism and safeguarding.
I will keep a record of your personal details to help the counselling services run smoothly. Your personal details will be stored in a password protected document on a password protected electronic device. A back up copy of this document will be stored on an external device. I will keep brief, factual written notes about our sessions. These are not shared with any third party. The aim of the notes is to remind me of the things we explored in our sessions. The notes will be coded using a reference number that I will have assigned to your record. The notes will be stored securely in a password protected document on a password protected electronic device. A back up copy of this document will be stored on an external device.
I will store your phone number in my mobile phone under your initials. My phone is locked with a pin. I will not save your e-mail address in my e-mail account. I do not retain text messages for more than 7 days. Likewise, any email correspondence will be deleted after 7 days if it is not important. If necessary I will save emails under your reference number. Once counselling has ended your records will be kept for 6 years from the end of our contact with each other and are then deleted.
4. Your Rights
I try to be as open as I can be in terms of giving people access to their personal information. You have a right to ask me to delete your personal information, to limit how I use your personal information, or to stop processing your personal information. You also have a right to ask for a copy of any information that I hold about you and to object to the use of your personal data in some circumstances. You can read more about your rights at ico.org.uk/your-data-matters.
If I do hold information about you I will:
- Give you a description of it and where it came from;
- tell you why I am holding its and tell you how long I will store your data
- tell you who it could be disclosed to;
- let you have a copy of the information in an intelligible form.
You can also ask me at any time to correct any mistakes there may be in the personal information I hold about you. To make a request for any personal information I may hold about you, please put the request in writing addressing it to email@example.com. If you have any complaint about how I handle your personal data please do not hesitate to get in touch with me by writing or emailing to the contact details given above. I would welcome any suggestions for improving my data protection procedures. If you want to make a formal complaint about the way I have processed your personal information you can contact the ICO which is the statutory body that oversees data protection law in the UK. For more information go to ico.org.uk/make-a-complaint.
Third Party Providers
Whilst all reasonable steps are taken to protect client data, digital services (including and not limited to phone, email and web-conferencing) supplied by third party providers, are not wholly within my control. I cannot be held liable, responsible or accountable for data breaches attributable to third party providers.
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