Privacy & Confidentiality Policy
- General information
- Welcome to the Privacy and Confidentiality Policy page. As you use my services, I want you to be clear about how I’m using information and the ways in which you can protect your privacy. This is important; I hope you will take time to read it carefully.
The law protects the privacy in the relationship between a client and a psychologist.
In most situations, I can only release information about your treatment to others if you sign a written Authorization form that meets certain legal requirements imposed by HIPAA.
• Suspected child abuse or dependent adult or elder abuse, for which I am required by law to report this to the appropriate authorities immediately.
• If a client seriously threatens to harm himself/herself, I may be obligated to seek hospitalization for him/her, or to contact family members or others who can help provide protection. Texas law provides that a professional may disclose confidential information only to medical or law enforcement personnel if the professional determines that there is a probability of imminent physical injury by the client to the client or to others, or there is a probability of immediate mental or emotional injury to the client.
There are some situations where I am permitted or required to disclose information without either your consent or Authorization:
• If you are involved in a court proceeding and a request is made for information concerning your diagnosis and treatment, such information is protected by the psychologist-patient privilege law. I cannot provide any information without your (or your legal representative’s) written authorization, or a court order. If you are involved in or contemplating litigation, you should consult with your attorney to determine whether a court would be likely to order me to disclose information.
• If a government agency is requesting the information for health oversight activities, I may be required to provide it for them.
• If a client files a complaint or lawsuit against my Practice, I may disclose relevant information regarding that client in order to defend myself.
• If a client files a worker’s compensation claim, I must, upon appropriate request, provide records relating to treatment or hospitalization for which compensation is being sought.
While this written summary of privacy and confidentiality should prove helpful in informing you about potential problems, it is important that you discuss any questions or concerns that you may have now or in the future. The laws governing confidentiality can be quite complex. In situations where specific legal advice is required, you should seek consultation with an attorney.
- Social Media Policy
- I do not use social networking sites.
If you need to contact me between sessions, the best way to do so is by phone:
Direct email is second best for quick, administrative issues such as changing appointment times. I prefer using email only to arrange or modify appointments. Please do not email content related to your therapy sessions, as email is not completely secure or confidential. If you choose to communicate with me by email, be aware that all emails are retained in the logs of your and my internet service provider. While it is unlikely that someone will be looking at those logs, they are, in theory, available to be read by the system administrator(s) of the internet service provider.