(Why we collect your personal data and what we do with it)
When you supply your personal details to this clinic they are stored and processed for 4 reasons (the bits in bold are the relevant terms used in the Data Protection Act 2018, which includes the General Data Protection Regulation – i.e. the law):
- We need to collect personal information about your health in order to provide you with the best possible service. Your requesting our services and our agreement to provide that care constitutes a contract. You can, of course, refuse to provide the information, but if you were to do that we may not be able to work with you.
- We have a “Legitimate Interest” in collecting that information, because without it we couldn’t do our job effectively and safely.
- We also think that it is important that we can contact you in order to confirm your appointments with us or to update you on matters related to your care. This again constitutes “Legitimate Interest”, but this time it is your legitimate interest.
- Provided we have your consent, we may occasionally send you relevant health information in the form of articles, advice or newsletters. You may withdraw this consent at any time – just let us know by any convenient method.
We have an obligation to retain your records for 8 years after your most recent appointment (or age 25, if this is longer), but after this period you can ask us to delete your records if you wish. Otherwise, we will retain your records indefinitely in order that we can provide you with the best possible care should you need to see us at some future date.
Your records are stored on paper, in locked filing cabinets, and the offices are always locked out of working hours.
Contact details (but not medical records) are stored electronically (“in the cloud”) by a specialist diary management service (currently Full Slate). This provider has given us their assurances that they are fully compliant with the General Data Protection Regulations.
We will never share your data with anyone who does not need access without your written consent. Only the following people/agencies will have routine access to your data:
- Your counsellor/psychotherapist in order that they can provide you with treatment and organise diaries
You have the right to see what personal data of yours we hold, and you can also ask us to correct any factual errors. Provided the legal minimum period has elapsed, you can also ask us to erase your records. We want you to be absolutely confident that we are treating your personal data responsibly, and that we are doing everything we can to make sure that the only people who can access that data have a genuine need to do so. Of course, if you feel that we are mishandling your personal data in some way, you have the right to complain. Complaints need to be sent to what is referred to in the jargon as the “Data Controller”. Here are the details you need for that:
99 High street, Kelvedon, Essex, CO5 9AA
If you are not satisfied with our response, then you have the right to raise the matter with the Information Commissioner’s Office.