Confidentiality - Empathy Rooms
Confidentiality is essential in therapy and is considered a cornerstone of our profession which we take extremely seriously and is essential for building trust. However, confidentiality is not absolute, and there are exceptions which would require confidentiality to be broken. In the interests of public safety it is sometimes necessary for therapists to make referrals to agencies or organisations such as GP’s, police or social services when there is a serious risk of imminent harm to a client or to others. Where possible we would always aim to make such referrals with the client’s knowledge and consent, but this is not always possible and is determined by the type and level of risk.
Under certain circumstances, confidentiality may also be broken as a requirement of law due to client disclosures, for example, about terrorist activities. In such cases it can be a criminal offence for a therapist to “tip off” their client when such disclosures are required and may be referred without consent.
Where confidentiality is to be broken at the client’s request, for example, where a client asks for help concerning abuse or for court cases involving a claim for damages by the client, this should be discussed with your therapist in the first session and agreement should be reached about the limits of confidentiality and its handling.
At no point will your therapist engage in external communications with your GP, employer, partner, family, and friends or to any other agencies without your knowledge. Such communications would be considered an absolute breach of confidentiality and trust.
Your therapist is duty bound to keep your client records for a period of six years following the end of your therapy. Such records will be held in accordance with the data protection act 1998 and will be destroyed thereafter in accordance with current best practice.
Your therapist, and indeed all practising therapist will have a supervisor who they meet on a regularly basis to maintain a good ethical framework for healthy practice. During supervision your therapist is encouraged to discuss issues and problems which they may be experiencing in the course of their treatment with clients. At all times confidentiality is observed in supervision and your therapist will not discuss your personal details with their supervisor. All supervisors are equally held to the ethical principles of confidentiality and you can be assured that your confidentiality will be preserved at all times. Supervision is a necessary element of the therapeutic process for your therapist and helps ensure that the best level of care is being provided by your therapist.
Back to FAQ >