Elements Therapies is a collective of individual counsellors;
The Coach House
11 Owler Ings Road
This policy will be provided to ensure clarity and transparency.
As a counsellor your privacy is priority and there are systems in place to protect both yourself and the information you provide, to not only comply with GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) in how your personal information is collected, stored and shared, but to also comply with the requirements of the BACP (British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy) the professional body of which we are both Registered members.
As information about you is collected, stored and shared as part of our work together it is necessary as your counsellor to be registered with the ICO (Information Commissioners Office) available at https://ico.org.uk
We are two independent counsellors who work together as Elements Therapies.
As data controllers
The Coach House (Office 12)
11 Owler Ings Road
If you need to get in touch then please use one of the methods provided for each individual counsellor.
What Is Collected (from you)
Should you make initial contact via phone, text or call, your phone number is stored on that device which is password protected under a code that is meaningless to any other individual, your phone number will be removed from the relevant device after our work together has ended.
If you decide to attend counselling then you will asked to give and sign consent for paper copies of documents to be completed and stored in a secure environment that your counsellor has access to; these being;
Our Agreement - providing an outline of the responsibilities and expectations for both client and counsellor
A Registration Form
Name, date of birth, current address
Contact information (telephone number, email) and preferred method of contact
G.P name and address
The Initial Consultation
Relevant medical conditions and medication/s
Brief therapy history
Current difficulties and aims for counselling
And Case Notes - after each session brief notes are made of key themes and contact between sessions.
The last two documents named are coded to ensure your anonymity and kept in a separate secure environment to the previous two.
All four documents are kept and stored securely for six years after counselling has ended at which point they are safely destroyed, if paper copies then they are shredded, if stored electronically then they are permanently deleted from the relevant device.
Why This Information is Collected
This information is collected in order to best support your needs whilst attending counselling, to enable ease of communication between ourselves during this time and to provide a way for contact to be made with a relevant authority or person as and when the need may arise.
Website Data, Security and Links to other Websites
Your personal information is not stored on the website other than briefly should you choose to make contact this way. If you choose to make contact via the website then is protected through a valid SSL certificate, you can check this through the presence of a padlock on the left side of the address bar. That said, should you choose to make contact this way then this information is available to an Elements Therapies counsellor, who will then contact you direct via the relevant phone number or email address provided above.
Our website may contain links to other websites of interest, should you click on these links then you leave our website and as such we cannot be responsible for the protection and privacy of any information you share as these sites are governed by their own privacy statement.
Also, should you use a site other than our website to make contact, then again, the privacy notice for that site applies, once contact is established then your personal information will be treated as previously mentioned.
Elements Therapies has a presence on social media, should you choose to engage with us via this platform then the privacy notice for that platform applies as mentioned above.
Confidentiality and disclosure of your Personal Information
You can be confident that any information shared through any means of “what is collected” is treated with the respect and confidentiality that it deserves and no content will be disclosed without prior consent of yourself (as the client), the following therapy standard exceptions apply;
As counsellors in the UK and as Registered members of the BACP, we are required to undertake monthly supervision, this is discussed and consented to as part of the agreement before counselling is undertaken, all personal details and your identity remain anonymous. Supervision is in place to support learning, ensure best practice is in place with your needs as the client being the main concern.
By Order of Law
If ordered by a court of law to share information held about you, then each individual counsellor will share the minimum amount required and after discussion with you wherever possible.
If it is believed there is significant risk to yourself or other people, or in the event you disclose to take your own life, each counsellor may share relevant contact information and brief mental health details with your emergency contact, your G.P or the emergency services, an attempt will be made to discuss this with yourself where possible.
Terrorism and Money Laundering
If during the course of the therapeutic relationship you disclose intent to commit an act of terrorism or money laundering, then each counsellor is committed by law to disclose this information to the relevant authority without your prior knowledge or consent.
It is necessary to ensure you have all the information needed to make an informed decision about what, why, when and how information about you is taken and stored, that is the purpose of this privacy statement to ensure transparency and clarity for all involved. Under General Data Privacy Regulation (GDPR) you have rights which you can exercise about information held about you, which is accessible on the ICO website (https://ico.org.uk)
In line with GDPR you have the option to find out what information is being stored and why, and who this information could be disclosed to, we hope to make this clear in our agreement. That said, you can make a request (sometimes called a ‘subject access request’) for this information and copy will be shared with you, this can be done through contacting your counsellor on one of the methods stated above.
Complaints or Queries
Whilst all care is taken to protect you and prevent the occasion for a complaint to be made about the way your personal information has been collected, used or shared then you as the client have the right to contact the ICO (https://ico.org.uk) to discuss any concerns you may have.
Should you have a concern or query then please let the relevant counsellor know as we work hard to ensure your needs are being met and welcome any suggestions to improve our practice.
This privacy statement was last updated October 2022 and will be updated as and when necessary due to changes in law, professional body or ICO requirements.