Privacy Policy and Informed Consent

SENSERA COUNSELLING PRIVACY POLICY AND INFORMED CONSENT

MY CONTACT DETAILS:

Name:  Catherine Taylor

Phone Number: 07305357566

E-mail: senseracounselling@protonmail.com

THE TYPE OF PERSONAL INFORMATION I COLLECT: I currently collect and process the following information:

  • Name and contact details
  • Doctor and referral details
  • Date of birth
  • Personal, social and medical details
  • Health details
  • Emergency contact details
  • Email address
  • Financial information via payments for services
  • Website user stats
  • Sex life where relevant
  • Sexual orientation

If health insurance is funding your sessions, I also need your name, DOB, address, plus your membership and authorisation codes to pass security checks with your health insurance company. 

HOW I GET THE PERSONAL INFORMATION AND WHY I HAVE IT: Most of the personal information I process is provided to me directly by you or by your referrer, for one of the following reasons:

  • To provide a counselling service
  • To provide a play therapy service
  • To provide supervision
  • To provide training

I may also use personal information to:

  • Evaluate and assess my services (anonymised data; unless at your own choosing you leave a review on a platform which links back to yourself)

I also receive personal information indirectly, from the following sources in the following scenarios:

  • My website and contact form senseracounselling.co.uk by your engagement/ interaction
  • What you choose to share with me – information you send me by email and over the phone (text or voice message)
  • Zoom in the case of online counselling. 
  • Your health insurance company or healthcare provider, if relevant, and with your consent 
  • Facebook by your engagement/interaction
  • Instagram by your engagement/interaction
  • Twitter by your engagement/interaction
  • LinkedIn by your engagement/interaction
  • Pinterest by your engagement/interaction

I use the information that you have given me in order to provide you with a service, or information about a service as mentioned above.

My policy is to request that clients endeavour to take the following actions wherever possible: 

  1. To email me from an email address that does not have your full name in it
  2. To only include your first name in any documents you send me 
  3. To password protect documents that you may send me or use an encrypted email.

Obtaining information from third parties 
If your therapy is being funded via a health insurance company, your insurance company may provide me with information, but this would never be without your prior knowledge and consent, in accordance with your agreed contract with them. Insurance companies typically encrypt or password protect sensitive information that they share. 

On occasion, with your prior knowledge and consent, I may have reason to ask to obtain information from other healthcare providers involved in your care, for example if you are working with a psychologist, psychiatrist or another therapist. This will only be to ensure I am providing the most appropriate, safe, responsive and effective therapy for your needs.

All information disclosed within sessions and the written records relating to these sessions is confidential and may not be revealed to anyone without your written permission except where disclosure is required by law.

I will share information with other professionals within a supervision setting, however your identity will be protected in the sharing of this information.  The purpose of such supervision is to protect clients by involving an impartial third party in the work of a counsellor and client, helping to reduce the risk of serious oversight and helping the counsellor concerned to reflect on their own feelings, thoughts, behaviour and general approach with the client.’

 WHEN DISCLOSURE MAY BE REQUIRED: I may disclose information for your safety or for the safety of someone else where there is a reasonable suspicion of risk of harm to yourself or others.  This may include a suspicion of harm or presenting harm to a child, an adult, a dependant or vulnerable person   Disclosure of information would also take place if you had committed a terrorist act or a serious crime in the past or were planning one in the future.  I would tell the relevant agency, this could be, the NSPCC, children’s services, social services, doctor, the police, a lawyer or a court of law.  Disclosures would also involve informing my supervisor.  In some cases of concern, it may be necessary to contact the person whose name you have provided.

BETWEEN SESSIONS: If an emergency arises between sessions, please contact the emergency services or The Samaritans or Befrienders Worldwide as appropriate. Please note that I run an appointment-based counselling service and do not offer any emergency support.

PAYMENTS: Clients are expected to pay for the session 48 hours in advance for online sessions.  For face-to-face appointments, payment will be made at the end of each session unless other arrangements have been pre-arranged.

COUNSELLING TREATMENT PLANS: At the end of the initial assessment, I will discuss with you my working understanding of the issues at hand, the counselling plan, therapeutic objectives, and my view of the possible outcomes of counselling. If you have any questions about my expertise, or about the treatment plan, please do ask.

TERMINATION: You or myself, has the right to terminate counselling and communication at any time. This could be in the case of a breach of contract, or if it is felt in the client’s best interest to refer on. If you would like me to, I can provide you with names of other qualified professionals whose services you might prefer.

DUAL/MULTIPLE RELATIONSHIPS:  Living in a small town, sometimes dual/multiple relationships are unavoidable.  Such relationships are where we are connected in a way other than through counselling.  If a dual/multiple relationship came to light, we would discuss the issues surrounding this.  If the relationship was felt to be conflicting with the effectiveness of the counselling, we can of course discontinue the sessions.

AUDIO OR VIDEO RECORDING: Unless otherwise agreed beforehand, there shall be no audio or video recording of our counselling sessions, phone calls etc.

CANCELLATION:  48 hours’ notice is required for re-scheduling or cancelling an appointment. Unless we reach a different agreement, the full fee will be charged for sessions missed without such notification.

GPDR: Under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the lawful bases I rely on for processing your information are:

(a) Your consent. You are able to remove your consent at any time. You can do this by contacting Catherine Taylor at Sensera Counselling.  However, there are exceptions to this.

(b) I have a contractual obligation.

(c) I have a legal obligation.

(d) I have a vital interest.

(e) I need it to perform a public task.

(f) I have a legitimate interest.

I collect your personal data from yourself or from your referrer.  This information is collected via an assessment, via encrypted email and via ongoing sessions together.  I also collect information about your evaluation of our services.

In the case of counselling and supervision records, insurance companies and ethical bodies ask for records to be available for a period 5 years. In the case of any work with young people this time period is extended to 5 years after your 18th birthday.  I will then dispose of your information by shredding paper notes and records and deleting emails where relevant or deleting information stored on computer where relevant.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION FOR SESSIONS VIA THE ONLINE PLATFORM ZOOM:   I will conduct all sessions in a quiet and confidential space. To ensure confidentiality the client needs to provide a similar space and the use of headphones can assist in this. When using Zoom, the meeting will be set up in advance on this platform. The client will be sent an individual URL for the meeting and once the meeting has taken place the details will be deleted from my account. No online service can be guaranteed as confidential but Zoom is used as it is encrypted and HIPAA compliant.  A full privacy notice for Zoom can be viewed here https://zoom.us/privacy.  If for some reason we have issues with zoom one week, I will call you on the telephone number that you have provided me and for that week only our meeting will continue on the telephone.

HOW I PROTECT YOUR INFORMATION: Unfortunately, no data transmission over the internet or any other network can be guaranteed 100% secure. While I strive to protect your personal information, I cannot ensure and do not warrant the security of any information you transmit to us, and this information is transmitted at your own risk.

HOW I STORE YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION: Your information is securely stored at my personal residence or at The Lifehouse Therapy Centre where I work 745b Southchurch Road, Southend, SS1 2PP. 

YOUR DATA PROTECTION RIGHTS: Under data protection law, you have rights including:

Your right of access – You have the right to ask me for copies of your personal information by formal request.

Your right to rectification – You have the right to ask me to rectify personal information you think is inaccurate. You also have the right to ask me to complete information you think is incomplete.

Your right to erasure – You have the right to ask me to erase your personal information in certain circumstances.

Your right to restriction of processing – You have the right to ask me to restrict the processing of your personal information in certain circumstances.

Your right to object to processing – You have the right to object to the processing of your personal information in certain circumstances.

Your right to data portability – You have the right to ask that I transfer the personal information you gave me to another organisation, or to you, in certain circumstances.

You are not required to pay any charge for exercising your rights. If you make a request, I have one month to respond to you.

Please contact me at

senseracounselling@protonmail.com

or Tel: 07305357566

if you wish to make a request.

HOW TO COMPLAIN: If you have any concerns about my use of your personal information, you can make a complaint to us at senseracounselling@protonmail.com or Tel: 07305357566.

You can also complain to the ICO if you are unhappy with how I have used your data.

The ICO’s address:           

Information Commissioner’s Office

Wycliffe House

Water Lane

Wilmslow

Cheshire

SK9 5AF

Helpline number: 0303 123 1113

ICO website: https://www.ico.org.uk

I will ask if you have read this Privacy Policy and Informed Consent Form for Sensera Counselling.  That you understand the content and agree to comply with it.