Confidentiality

Confidentiality

Privacy policy for the management of personal client information

  • This document describes the privacy policy of Cheswick Consultants for the management of clients personal information. The wellbeing service provided is bound by the legal requirements of the Australian Privacy Principles set out in the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth).

What personal information do we collect

  • Our client files are held in a secure electronic document management system, accessible only to authorised employees. The information on each file includes personal information such as name, address, contact phone numbers, medical history, and other personal information collected as part of providing the psychological service.

  • We are always conscious of the trust our clients place in us to protect their privacy and secure their personal information. We urge you to read our Security Policy to understand and appreciate the steps we take to ensure all your interactions with our practice remain confidential.

How do we collect personal client information

  • A client’s personal information is collected in a number of ways during counselling consultation with a Cheswick Consultants counsellor, including when the client provides information directly to Cheswick Consultants using hardcopy forms, correspondence via email, when the client interacts directly with Cheswick Consultants team members (including our Administration team), and when other health practitioners provide personal information to Cheswick Consultants via referrals, correspondence and medical reports.

  • In addition to the above, Cheswick Consultants have implemented the following security controls:

  • Consultations are not recorded in any way by Cheswick Consultants counsellors.

  • Cheswick Consultants counsellors are required to conduct video consultations in soundproof locations, meaning clients can rest assured they are not being overheard by others

  • Only Cheswick Consultants counsellors have access to the video platform. Front office staff do not need, nor have, access to the system

  • If the client does not wish for their personal information to be collected in a way anticipated by this Privacy Policy, Cheswick Consultants may not be in a position to provide the counselling service to the client. Clients may request to be anonymous or to use a pseudonym, unless it is impracticable for Cheswick Consultants to deal with the client, or if Cheswick Consultants is required or authorised by law to deal with identified individuals. In most cases it will not be possible for the client to be anonymous or to use a pseudonym, however if GardenWell Australia agrees to the client being anonymous or using a pseudonym, the client must pay consultation fees at the time of the appointment.

Purpose of holding personal information

  • A client’s personal information is gathered and used for the purpose of providing psychological services, which includes assessing, diagnosing and treating a client’s presenting issue. The personal information is retained in order to document what happens during sessions, and enables the counsellor to provide a relevant and informed counselling service.

Direct marketing

  • Direct marketing involves the use or disclosure of personal information to communicate directly with an individual to promote goods and services. At Cheswick Consultants we may use your email address to contact you to advise of any changes, additions, or removal of the services we offer to you.

  • We will not take advantage, send unwarranted or illegitimate ‘spam’ messages to you. In any direct correspondence we will always provide a means for you to withdraw your interest and unsubscribe from future updates.

  • Cheswick Consultants will never on-sell your personal information to third part interests.

Disclosure of personal information

  • Clients personal information will not be disclosed except when:

  • It is subpoenaed by a court; or

  • Failure to disclose the information would in the reasonable belief of Cheswick Consultants , place a client or another person at serious risk to life, health or safety; or

  • The client’s prior approval has been obtained to:a) provide a written report to another professional or agency, e.g., a GP or a lawyer; orb) discuss the material with another person, e.g. a parent, employer or health provider; orc) disclose the information in another way; or

  • You would reasonably expect your personal information to be disclosed to another professional or agency (e.g. your GP) and disclosure of your personal information to that third party is for a purpose which is directly related to the primary purpose for which your personal information was collected; or

  • Disclosure is otherwise required or authorised by law.

Requests for access and correction to client information

  • At any stage, clients may request to see and correct the personal information about them kept on file. The Cheswick Consultants counsellor may discuss the contents with them and/or give them a copy, subject to the exceptions in the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth). If satisfied that personal information is inaccurate, out of date or incomplete, reasonable steps will be taken in the circumstances to ensure that this information is corrected. All requests by clients for access to or correction of personal information held about them should be lodged with Cheswick Consultants. These requests will be responded to in writing within fourteen working days, and an appointment will be made if necessary for clarification purposes.

Concerns

  • If a client has a concern about the management of their personal information, they may inform Cheswick Consultants. Upon request, they can obtain a copy of the Australian Privacy Principles, which describe their rights and how their personal information should be handled. Ultimately, if a client wishes to lodge a formal complaint about the use of, disclosure of, or access to, their personal information, they may do so with the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner by phone on 1300 363 992, online at http://www.oaic.gov.au/privacy/making-a-privacy-complaintor by post to: Office of the Australian Information Commissioner, GPO Box 5218, Sydney, NSW 2001.

In closure

  • A client’s personal information will not be disclosed to overseas recipients, unless the client consents, or such disclosure is otherwise required by law. Clients personal information will not be used, sold, rented or disclosed for any other purpose.