All information gained through the psychotherapeutic process is considered confidential and would only be released to another individual or agency as a professional consultation for a specific purpose and only when it is deemed in the best interests of the client. The exceptions that are required include 1) releasing information to any court if the information is ordered released by a judge, 2) in situations requiring information based on professional ethical standards and legal requirements (e.g. protection from harm to self, or others, as well as protecting individuals by reporting abuse or neglect). It is also important to be aware that information is often sent to your insurance company (if you are requesting insurance coverage) or their managed care companies as per the requirements of your and our agreements with a particular insurance program. Information is often sent/or call may be made to your residence or place of business for billing or notification purposes or to provide/receive necessary information to receive payments, change appointments, etc. In addition, information may be required or offered by electronic (or wireless) communication and is only as confidential as the equipment, programs, or personnel sending or receiving the information. Any person required to be supervised or situations requiring clinical director intervention will have to make information available as appropriate. Other than these specific situations, no information can or would be released to any person or agency unless the client provides written consent to the therapist and/or Stress Management & Mental Health Clinics, Inc. Often there is a fee for providing confidential information to others. If a fee is required, you will be informed in advance. If a collection agency is used to collect delinquent accounts, appropriate information will be released.
Social Network Friending Policy
We do not accept friend or contact requests from current or former clients on any social networking site (Facebook, Linkedin, etc.) We believe that adding clients as friends or contacts on these sites can compromise your confidentiality and our respective privacy. It may also blur the boundaries of our therapeutic relationship. If you have questions about this, please bring them up when we meet and we can talk more about it.
Following via Twitter or on Blogs
We publish a blog on our website. We have no expectation that you as a client will want to follow our blog. However, if you use an easily recognizable name as a reply and your therapist happens to notice, we may briefly discuss it and its potential impact on our working relationship.
My primary concern is your privacy.
Note that I will not follow you on any social media. We only follow other health professionals and we do not follow current or former clients on blogs, Facebook, or Twitter. Our reasoning is that we believe casual viewing of our client’s online content outside of the therapy hour can create confusion in regard to whether it’s being done as part of your treatment or to satisfy personal curiosity.
In addition, viewing your online activities without your consent and without our explicit arrangement toward a specific purpose could potentially have a negative influence on our working relationship. If there are things from your online life that you wish to share with your therapist, please bring them into our sessions where we can view and explore them together, during the therapy hour.
Interacting through email, social networks, or text messaging
Please DO NOT use SMS (mobile phone text messaging) or messaging on Social Networking sites such as Twitter, Facebook, or Linkedin to contact us. These sites are not secure and we may not read these messages in a timely fashion. Do not use Wall postings, @replies, or other means of engaging with us in public online if we have an already established client/therapist relationship.
Engaging with us this way could compromise your confidentiality. It may also create the possibility that these exchanges become a part of your legal medical record and will need to be documented and archived in your chart.
If you need to contact your therapist between sessions, the best way to do so is by telephone.
Please do not email us content related to your therapy sessions, as email is not completely secure or confidential. If you choose to communicate with your therapist by email, be aware that all emails are retained in the logs of yours and our Internet service providers.
Do not put anything on an email that you would not put on a post card.