In order for me to provide a professional service, I may need to collect, store and use personal information from my service users. This privacy statement sets out the terms in which I do this, what I collect, why, how it is stored, who has access to it, those I may share it with and how long I will retain it for.
The Data Protection Principles
I will comply with data protection law. The law states that the personal information that I hold about you must be:
1. Used lawfully, fairly and in a transparent way.
2. Collected only for valid purposes that I have clearly explained to you and not used in any way that is incompatible with those purposes.
3. Relevant to the purposes we have told you about and limited only to those purposes
4. Accurate and kept up to date
5. Kept only as long as necessary for the purposes that we have told you about
6. Kept securely
The information that I collect
I collect details about each service user from the referral form and initial assessment forms to include Name, Address, Date of Birth, Age, Telephone Number, Email address, Doctor Details, Next of kin and reasons for accessing the service such as relevant medical history and current emotional state. I may also have appointments in my diary which are client coded (Just initials)
Why I need to collect this personal data
The information that I collect, enables me to determine the service users needs from the service I provide, and for me to be able to contact the service user if I need to, for example when appointments are being made or cancelled.
Storage of information
Each Service users personal information is kept in an individual file and is stored in a locked filing cabinet at all times. Each service user is given a coded reference number.
Access to information
Access to any private information is on a need to know basis only, and is limited to myself as the Director and counsellor within the service, and designated counsellors to their own service user should I expand within the future.
Sharing of information
I may only share personal information in the event of a requested court order for my notes, otherwise your details will not be shared with other individuals or agencies without your written consent.
Your rights to access your data
Under certain circumstances, by law you have the right to:
The timescales in which I keep information for
I keep your data for no longer than necessary, only retaining it for any period required by law. Your data will be held for the duration of your therapy and normally for two years from the date or your last session where, thereafter, it will be destroyed.
Sometimes, the nature of certain requests for counselling require me to keep data for a longer period of time, I will advise you if this is the case.
My privacy statement is provided under the terms of the European Union General Data Protection Regulations 2017 and the UK Data Protection Act 2018