I assure total confidentiality to all my clients in all normal circumstances. Where this assurance becomes limited is on the, rare, occasion I assess they are a serious and imminent risk to themselves or other/s and are not able to take necessary steps towards ensuring safety. In practice this would mean that they would be planning or seemed very likely to end their own or another’s life and they seemed unable to stop themselves from carrying these actions out in the very near future. The other situation where I might need to act on information given to me would be if I were given first-hand information concerning the safety of a child (i.e. someone 16 or under).

In practice it’s very unusual to have to break confidentiality. If I did ever need to it would usually be to another health care professional involved in your care – in most cases, your GP. I would be mindful in this circumstance to minimise the information disclosed and only discuss information directly relevant to these concerns about risk and safety.

 Notes and Confidentiality

I may keep notes on our sessions. In all normal circumstances I am the only person who has access to these notes and they’re kept secure in my practice. In unusual circumstances, however, they can be requested by a court of law and legally I would then be obliged to make them available to the court. For this reason they are kept brief and detail to a minimum.