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Privacy Policy

Privacy Policy and Data Protection

At Hamilton Lodge Counselling Practice, I would like you to feel confident in the way I handle and store your personal data. This privacy policy is intended to explain what I will do with the information you share with me in compliance with the general data protection regulation (GDPR) 2018.

I am committed to protecting your personal information, making sure that it is processed in a transparent and lawful way, that it is kept no longer than necessary and that it is thereafter destroyed when our work together has ended and/or in accordance with my insurance company’s policy.

What information do I keep and for what purpose?

Name, address, telephone number, date of birth, email – this is basic information to allow me to get to know you and contact you regarding sessions. I will use your preferred contact method first but if I am unable to reach you, I will try another method.

Doctors details – I will use this information to contact your GP only if I feel you are at significant risk of harm to yourself and I will endeavour to discuss this with you first but I reserve the right to contact your GP if I feel the risk is imminent.

Assessment form and contract – this information is to help me understand the issues you may be facing and for background knowledge.

Will I share your information?

I will not sell or share your information for unethical reasons. I will not share any of the personal information you have given me unless I am subpoenaed by a court or if I feel yourself or anyone you tell me about in at risk of harm, in this case I may need to share information with the police or your GP. You have the right to request to see, have amended or have destroyed any information I have stored by written request. I will endeavour to reply to such requested within 14 days.

Contact tracing (“Track and Trace”) may mean I will be required to give a client’s name to the NHS as someone I have been in contract with if I test positive for coronavirus but I will not be required to tell them the circumstances of our contact. This is under the “risk of harm” disclosure clause and required of me for public health/interest reasons.

How do I store your information?

I store all data kept on paper in a locked filing cabinet, your contact details are kept in my phone which is passcode protected. Your session notes are kept separately and are identifiable by a unique code I will assign them.

How long will I keep your information?

I will keep your session notes, name and unique code for 6 years, this is the timeframe my insurance company requests. All contact information, paperwork and emails will be removed/shredded one month after our last session.

If you are unhappy with the way in which I store your information you can call the Information Commissioners Office on 0303 123 1113 or go to their website

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