Confidentiality is the foundation of my work. I take confidentiality very seriously.
- I will not talk about your story with anyone else
- If someone calls me asking if I know you or asking if you’re a client, I politely say, “I cannot confirm or deny an individual is coming to my office.”
- If we come across one another in public, I will not approach you or start a conversation
- If you do not approach or greet me in public, I do not take it personally and understand your need for privacy
- I will not put you in a situation where you have to explain to someone else how you know me
- If we are introduced by a mutual acquaintance I will act like it’s the first time we’ve met
Limits to Confidentiality
I do have limits to confidentiality, however, if:
- You are a danger to yourself
- You are a danger to someone else
- You are a danger to someone’s property
- Abuse of a minor or elder
I have an obligation to ensure safety and can break confidentiality in the above situations.
Also, in order to maintain my skills as a counselor or to get specialized insight for a particular issue, I will occasionally consult with other trusted clinicians. Not only do these clinicians follow the same strict ethical and confidentiality guidelines that I do.
Records & Data Security
In order to meet the standard of care consistent with California law and my field’s ethical guidelines I:
- Take brief notes for every session with every client
- Maintain records for 7 years after our final session
Any note containing the contents of our conversations and diagnoses is not stored online, does not touch the Internet, and is not stored on a device that regularly connects to the Internet. All notes are encrypted and password protected.
I do store a list of client names and their related contact information (e.g., emergency contacts and other providers) online with a third-party that is HIPAA compliant. The data is stored on encrypted servers. I’ve chosen to store this basic information online so that I can easily access it in the case of an emergency.
If you have any concerns about your records, I’m more than happy to review this with you over the phone or in person.