It is your statutory right according to the General Data Protection Regulations approved by the EU Parliament on 14 April 2016 with enforcement from 25 May 2018 to request:
I am also required under this law to disclose to you the records I keep about you, how I store them, what I use them for and how I dispose of them.
Electronic Diary System
I use an electronic diary system on my office PC which is Outlook/iCloud maintained. This is synced to my mobile phone and iPad to enable me to access my diary where ever I am. All three of these electronic devices are password protected. I identify client appointments using first names only. My diary is shared with my husband and adult daughter. Should an emergency (e.g. I am taken seriously ill) occur my husband has the immediate responsibility of handing over practice information (e.g. client names and contact details) to my colleague who has agreed to act as executer for my Clinical Will. For more information about my Clinical Will see the end of this document.
Client Intake Sheet
This is an intake form, identifiable by a code number only, consisting of a set of questions to ascertain your age, employment, pertinent family history, medical and psychological history, what you want to achieve in therapy, and any agreements we make. It is usually completed by me, in collaboration with you at the end of our initial meeting and if we agree to work together. The form is a paper document which is then transferred to my electronic filing system where it is identified by number only. The paper document is then shredded (see paragraph headed “How I dispose of your records”).
Personal Information Record Card
This is an index card recording the name, address and contact telephone number of you, your G.P. and (if applicable) your consultant Psychiatrist. It is kept in a filing system that is separate from therapy records and under lock and key when I am away from the office or there are others in the house. It is used for contact information purposes only.
Session Records and what I do with them
I have an electronic log system that records your attendance by your unique identifier. I also have a word file only identified by your unique number. In this word file I record a brief outline of your presenting issue and any end of session notes I keep. None of the information on the Personal Information Record Card appears in the log or word file. It should be noted the therapy records I keep are brief – literally a reminder of the key issue covered in the session. These records are not shared with any other person.
Electronic Accounts system
My practice accounts are set up on an electronic accounts system. My husband acts as my accounts manager in terms of paying my practice and professional bills and monitoring activity on the account. As such he will have access to your identifying name or business name and the way in which you identify your payment to me. He also checks against my diary for missed payments and informs me of missed or payment discrepancies.
How I dispose of your records
I have an on-going contract with a data shredding company. They destroy paper data I want to dispose of onsite bi-monthly. The data is stored in a locked and secure container which is tipped into the mobile shredder. Once the data has been shredded I am issued with an invoice for the services and a certificate confirming destruction of the data.
I will destroy all electronic records I keep about you should you request me to at the end of our work together.
Disclosure of information to other parties
Contact information for the medical professionals working with you is important to have in case I believe you need medical intervention. I will only contact these people if:
I will always tell you if I intend to contact your G.P. and/or Psychiatrist.
I retain the right to disclose to statutory authorities if I believe you are intending to engage in any activity that will harm another.
Another part of my professional life is as a trainer and supervisor. In this role I may use vignettes of client work to illustrate a concept. When I do this, I do not disclose any material which could identify an individual. If you feel strongly you do not want me to use material from your case, please tell me when we meet.
Sometimes people ask me how long they will need to be in therapy to do the work they want. My answer is always the same - "I don't know".
My request is that you give me good warning of your intention to end therapy. We can then negotiate a timely and okay ending for both of us.
How long is your data stored for?
I have found it useful in my years of practice to hold on to all electronic records for at least seven years. Some clients will return to therapy after several years and I have found it useful to have their original documentation. If you do not want me to retain your data, please tell me and I will destroy it as soon as the therapy has ended or when I have received your request.
In the circumstance of my being unavailable to continue to work with you due to serious illness, incapacitation or death I have an agreement with a colleague whereby she will be informed of my circumstances by a member of my family, sent your contact information and it is she who will contact you to inform you and discuss how you wish to go forward. A member of my family also holds responsibility for the deletion of all electronic and paper records pertinent to my clients in the scenario of illness or my death.
|Counselling & Psychotherapy in Berkshire: Ascot, Sunningdale, Sunninghill, Bracknell, Wokingham, Crowthorne, Sandhurst, Reading, Woodley, Winnersh, Earley, Hurst, Twyford, Maidenhead, White Waltham, Holyport, Bray, Windsor, Slough.
Counselling & Psychotherapy in Surrey: Camberley, Bagshot, Lightwater, Egham, Virginia Water, Chertsey, Addlestone, Chobham, Woking.
Counselling & Psychotherapy in Middlesex: Staines, Wraysbury.
© Copyright 2019 Linda Kelley, 18 Old Lands Hill, Bracknell, Berkshire, RG12 2QX, UK.