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Confidentiality is implemented by therapists, psychiatrists, psychologists, counsellors, and other mental health professionals to protect your privacy. We appreciate you'll feel more at ease knowing we won't be discussing your personal, private and intimate information at our next Christmas meal.
This article will detail Restoration Therapy's working confidentiality policy in easy-to-understand language.
Confidentiality includes both the contents of what's discussed in therapy and the fact that you're receiving therapy. For example, it is customary that therapists won't acknowledge you if they run into you outside of the therapy room to protect their privacy. They wouldn't approach you should your paths cross in a supermarket.
Other ways confidentiality is protected include:
Unfortunately, there are a limited number of situations in which a counsellor will not be able to keep details shared in therapy confidential.
For example, a patient may discuss feelings of depression or anger management problems with a counsellor and expect these expressions to be kept confidential. If, however, the depressed patient reveals plans to commit suicide or the patient dealing with rage control issues threatens to harm another person, the counsellor has a legal responsibility to break confidentiality and alert the appropriate medical or legal authorities to prevent patients from becoming dangers to themselves or others. The same is true for patients who witness child abuse. Counsellors may also be required to submit records to authorities if law enforcement agencies request.
With regards to confidentiality, counsellors have complex responsibilities toward their patients. On the one hand, they must respect patients and keep their communications confidential when possible. On the other hand, they must make the judgment to break confidentiality when presented when a situation in which legal authorities are involved, or if the patient seems to be a threat to self or others. Though complicated, these seemingly conflicting requirements are essential for the patient's wellbeing and those around them.
When employees voluntarily self refer themselves, it is assumed to be entirely confidential. The system counts on that because it is meant to give employees the confidence their personal information won't be broadcasted to their employer. Workplace counselling is designed to help employees manage stress factors before becoming a significant factor in workplace performance.
Without confidentiality, our workplace counsellor service would fall apart because too many would have reservations about utilising our service out of fear.
However, employees are subject to the same exceptions are stated above.
All of our counsellors are accredited by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP), and work within the framework of the BACP code of ethics. Here's an extract from their Ethical Framework on this matter:
We will protect the confidentiality and privacy of clients by:
The Data Protection Act was replaced in May 2018 with the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). It came into effect in the UK on the 25th May 2018, and the government has confirmed that the UK's decision to leave the EU will not affect the implementation of the GDPR.
Under the GDPR, the data protection principles set out the primary responsibilities for organisations. The guidelines are similar to those in the Data Protection Act (DPA), with added detail at specific points with new accountability requirements.
The most significant addition is the accountability policy. The GDPR requires us to show you how we comply with it. For example, by documenting the decisions we take about a processing activity.