How long are records kept for?
As a member of the CNHC (the Complimentary and Natural Healthcare Council) I am required to hold onto your information for 8 years after your final session. The Council also stipulates that when a client is a child I must keep their records until their 25th birthday unless they are 17 when the therapy ends, when I must keep it until their 26th birthday. All records will be deleted in the January after the required retention scales. These timescales also reflect NHS regulations regarding the retention of data.
Why do you need to record information relating to me?
I need to collect information about what you want to achieve by having hypnotherapy, some brief medical information and some details about your important others in order to give you the best quality support that I can. In addition I keep brief session notes so that I can refer to previous sessions and discussions so that I can track your progress throughout therapy to ensure we are moving towards achieveing your aims. Your contact details, address and GP's details will only be used with your explicit consent.
Can I ask to see my data? How quickly can I look at it if so?
You are able to see any information that is held about you within 30 days of asking. You can also ask for a copy of any personal information held by me, although my insurance company's legal team may want to verify any information I send out.
Do our discussions during sessions remain confidential?
Yes, everything discussed during sessions remains strictly confidential. I may sometimes discuss elements of our sessions with my hypnotherapy supervisor to ensure I am doing my job to the highest standard but I would never disclose any identifying details about you to my supervisor. My supervisor also adheres to GDPR.
What is GDPR?
The Data Protection Act has now been replaced by GDPR. The aim of GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) is to ensure that your personal, sometimes sensitive, confidential data is held privately and securely, being processed in the way that you have agreed to. It exists to protect your rights as a consumer involving your identifiable data, e.g. your name and address & any reason you might have for visiting me. It also covers any session records, text messages or emails between us.
Will you discuss me with other health and social care professionals?
I am only allowed to contact other health and social care professionals with your written consent. For example, if I write to your GP to advise them that you have started hypnotherapy, and again at the end of your therapy, I would need your written consent in line with GDPR requirements. The exceptions to this would be if I thought you were at risk of harming yourself or another, when I would be required to inform the relevant authorities as part of my Duty of Care. I would always try to discuss this with you first though. In addition, I am legally required to provide the police with information as set out in a warrant or court order.