Privacy Policy

Introduction

Your privacy is very important to me, and your personal information will be kept safe and secure and will only be used for the purpose it was given to me. I adhere to current data protection legislation, including the General Data Protection Regulation (the GDPR) and the Data Protection Act 2018.

This privacy notice tells you what I will do with your personal information from initial point of contact through to after your therapy has ended.

I am happy to chat through any questions you might have about my data protection policy, and you can contact me initially about this by email.

‘Data controller’ is the term used to describe the person that collects and stores and has responsibility for people’s personal data. In this instance, the data controller is me.  I am registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office, reference ZA783111

My email address is: hello@ianholliscounselling.co.uk

My lawful basis for holding and using your personal information

The GDPR states that I must have a lawful basis for processing your personal data. There are different lawful bases depending on the stage at which I am processing your data. I have explained these below:

If you have had therapy with me and it has now ended, I will use legitimate interest as my lawful basis for holding and using your personal information.

If you are currently having therapy or if you are in contact with me to consider therapy, I will process your personal data where it is necessary for the performance of our contract.

The GDPR also makes sure that I look after any sensitive personal information that you may disclose to me appropriately. This type of information is called ‘special category personal information’. The lawful basis for me processing any special categories of personal information is that it is for provision of health treatment (in this case counselling) and necessary for a contract with a health professional (in this case, a contract between me and you).

How I use your information

 

Initial contact

When you contact me with an enquiry about my counselling services, I will collect information to help me satisfy your enquiry. This will include Full name, Date of birth, Home address, Telephone number, Email address, GP name and address, Emergency contact and their relationship to you. I would also likely request information on your availability and reasons for seeking counselling support.

 

If you decide not to proceed, I will ensure all your personal data is deleted within two months. If you would like me to delete this information sooner, just let me know.

While you are accessing counselling with me

Rest assured that everything you discuss with me is confidential. That confidentiality will only be broken if I believe that not sharing the information would result in the risk of harm to clients or any other person or if there is a legal requirement to do so. I will always try to speak to you about this first, unless there are safeguarding issues that prevent this. 

I will keep a record of your personal details to help the counselling services run smoothly and these details are kept securely on a password and encrypted laptop accessible only be me.

I may keep brief written notes of each session, these are kept securely in a lockable cabinet. As BACP registered counsellors, anonymised client information is shared with professional supervisors (a requirement of registration) in order to maximise service provision to clients.

After counselling has ended.

Once counselling has ended electronic contact details and a closure form showing number of session and issues discussed (two lines and a tick box classifying issues) are kept for one year in case you choose to return to counselling with me. After this time, they are then securely destroyed. If you want me to delete your information sooner than this, please tell me.

 

Any brief notes that I have made during our sessions together will be destroyed immediately after the counselling has ended.

Your rights

You have a right to ask me to delete your personal information, to limit how I use your personal information, or to stop processing your personal information. You also have a right to ask for a copy of any information that I hold about you and to object to the use of your personal data in some circumstances. You can read more about your rights at https://ico.org.uk/your-data-matters

To make a request for any personal information I may hold about you, please put the request in writing addressing it to hello@ianholliscounselling.co.uk

If you have any complaint about how I handle your personal data, please do not hesitate to get in touch with me by emailing to the contact details given above. I would welcome any suggestions for improving my data protection procedures.

If you want to make a formal complaint about the way I have processed your personal information you can contact the ICO which is the statutory body that oversees data protection law in the UK. For more information go to https://ico.org.uk/make-a-complaint/

Data security

I take the security of the data I hold about you very seriously and as such I take every effort to make sure it is kept secure. I store paper records, including personal information in a locked filing cabinet and electronic information in password protected and encrypted format (including email, telephone numbers and text). Telephone numbers are anonymised any text messages being held on password protected mobile phones.  Session notes are held separately from personal and identifying information in anonymised format.

 

I use WriteUpp as a record keeping software which is ISO27001 certified and GDPR compliant and uses two-factor authentication login and data encryption to keep records safe.

 

Visitors to my website

I use legitimate interests as my lawful basis for holding and using your personal information in this way when you visit my website. 

The website of Ian Hollis Counselling is hosted by Wix. You can read their privacy notice here https://www.wix.com/about/privacy

 

Like most websites cookies are used to help the site work more efficiently. Information about the use of cookies can be found here https://www.wix.com/cookies

 
No user-specific data is collected by me or any third party. If you fill in a form on my website, that data will be temporarily stored on the web host (Wix) before being sent to me.