The University Counselling Service takes confidentiality very seriously. All client information is treated in confidence. This means that we will not normally disclose any details concerning the counselling without your agreement.
There may be exceptional circumstances in which the counsellor believes it is necessary to break confidentiality: if legally required to do so or when the counsellor believes you or a third party may have serious harm caused to yourself or others. In these cases wherever possible the counsellor will discuss this with you and also encourage you to deal with the matter appropriately.
All counsellors receive external supervision in line with their professional requirements. The identity of any client to the Service is not revealed in the process.
We will not discuss your problems with you School or personal tutor or in fact anybody outside of the University Counselling Service without your written agreement. If anyone contacts us to ask whether a particular student is seeing a counsellor, we will not divulge this information.
The University Counselling Service has record keeping procedures in place:
(a) Factual details e.g. date of birth/academic school are stored on the Counselling Service's database.
(b) In addition to the factual information collected on the registration form, for the purposes of ongoing research, your counsellor may seek some further information from you. Some of this will also be stored on our database anonymously and confidentially, some stored manually. If you do not consent to this additional information being collected and stored it will not affect the counselling process.
(c) Paper records are also kept. These record a brief summary of what has brought you to the Service and an outline of what is explored in each session.
The database is accessible only by the Counselling Services staff. Information collected from the CORE (Clinical Outcomes in Routine Evaluation) questionnaire is used for both service and national research into students counselling. The paper records are filed anonymously and securely and disposed of five years after counselling has ended. All Counselling records comply with the requirements of the Data Protection Act 1998.