Privacy Policy

To safely and appropriately provide you with counselling I need to collect personal data from you and I need your written consent to collect this data. You will be given a copy of my Privacy Policy to read and sign prior to your therapy starting. If the client is under the age of 16, the signing must be completed by a parent or guardian. 

Counselling is a confidential process and I do not reveal your personal data, or the content of your sessions, to a third party without your express permission. The only exceptions to this would be if you were threatening your own life or the life of another, there was a safeguarding issue or you were involved in a crime that falls outside of counselling confidentiality boundaries. In these cases, I may decide to contact emergency services or relevant authorities without your permission.

 

This privacy policy also explains what information I collect, how I use it, where I keep it, how long I keep it for and the procedures that I have in place to safeguard your privacy.

When you contact me via my website contact submission form, email or via telephone you give me:

  • Your name

  • Your email address

  • Your phone number 

  • A reason for your enquiry

I collect this information for the following reasons:

  • To ensure I can identify you easily within my caseload, maintaining complete confidentiality for you and your data

  • To monitor and measure the effectiveness of my service

  • To identify all potential factors that may be contributing to the problem you are seeking help with, and that I am adequately trained in that area

My website doesn’t store any personal details. After you fill out the contact form online all further communication will be via phone and email. Please also refer to my cookies policy, for further information.

My mobile phone & laptop are passcode protected so cannot be accessed without access to this code or my fingerprint. My business phone is not my personal phone so is only kept with me whilst I am working. Any personal travel does not involve taking my business phone outside of my home address. 

My email address is also password protected and all emails remain completely confidential. This email address is solely for my business so you will not have your details passed onto any 3rd parties or receive spam notices. In the unlikely event you receive any emails received in error you are required to return them to me immediately and permanently delete them.

If you choose to go ahead with therapy you will be asked to fill out & sign all documentation via my online signature software HelloSign. This means you can sign the documentation online, without needing to print off the documents & scan back to me. To complete this process, you will receive an email which will prompt you to sign the necessary documents. Once you have completed the signing process you will receive a confirmation email with your copy of the signed documents. In order to protect your data, it is recommended you do not forward this email; however, you can choose to do so at your own risk. You will not be required to sign up for a HelloSign account & their individual privacy policy can be found here: https://gb.hellosign.com/privacy?_ga=2.29713846.848962454.1597831836-1358798338.1595328209 

Payments for sessions are made using on my online invoicing and credit card payment system Square. You will either pay for your sessions on the day using a credit or debit card or be sent an email on the day of the session containing your invoice, which you can also pay using a credit or debit card. If you pay for your sessions on the day your card details will not be stored on my Square account. You have the capability to store your card details if you pay via invoices to avoid entering your details each time. Your invoice will be called “Therapy Session” and the reference will be a mixture of our initials and the number of the session, for example LSWW001. When you pay for your invoices, paying by Visa or Mastercard, the following will be displayed on your bank statement “SQ *Lauren Street*”. If you are paying via American Express, the following will be displayed “SQUAREUP EUROPE”. The privacy & security notice for Square can be found here: https://squareup.com/help/gb/en/article/3796-privacy-and-security  

Square also has an appointment scheduling tool which I use to keep my diary up to date. The details you provide me with, including your full name, email address and mobile number will be added to my scheduling tool so that I can easily identify my daily appointments and make any necessary changes. You will also be sent timely reminders for your appointments via email so that you can keep track of your scheduled appointments. This tool does not allow you to cancel or book appointments online. You will need to do this with me directly and may be subject to late cancellation fees in the appropriate notice isn’t given. This is outlined further in clause 3.4 of your Therapy Contract.

I have an account with isosconnect that gives me capability to store my clinical notes, your completed documents and all other paperwork stored securely online. Once you have completed my necessary paperwork, I will create a profile for you on isosconnect, using only the information you give me, so that I can keep your records up to date. If you are a returning client who started sessions prior to 11th July 2022 your original paperwork will be uploaded to your newly created profile in addition to your updated signed paperwork and the original paper copies will be immediately shredded. If you’re a new client with no prior sessions before 11th July 2022 your data will be solely held within isosconnect. Their privacy policy can be found here: https://www.isosconnect.com/

After our first meeting I will complete an assessment form. This will be typed and uploaded to your isosconnect profile. The file will then be permanently deleted from my laptop hardrive and solely stored on isosconnect.

I keep a log of all sessions with my clients. This log is purely the date of the session and a brief overview of the session theme. This will be filled out via your isosconnect profile.

Once you have completed signing the documents via HelloSign I will log into my account & download your documents. I will then create your isosconnect and Square appointment scheduling profiles so your data will be stored within these online providers. Both meet UK GDPR regulations in full for storage of mental health records, isosconnect, and personal data, isosconnect & Square. In the unlikely event of my death or incapacitation there are written instructions, in my Clinical Will, as to how your data can be accessed and passed to the clinical directors of the service, I see you in. If you see me for online sessions, I will assign you a location so you will also be contacted.

Your data will be stored in the same location for 7 years after our therapy has ended, as per my insurance policy. Once the 7 years has passed, all documents I have relating to our work will be deleted. Your records are not classed as medical records or public records.

Once we have ended, I will delete your phone number and email address from my phone and laptop, however, I will archive all conversations for the same duration as I keep your notes. Once I delete your notes, I shall also delete your email and text conversations.

 

You have the right to be informed about the information I collect and store as well as the methods I use for storing it. You also have the right to access the information I store. Should you wish to do this please contact me to access this information with no questions asked. Please note I legally have 28 days to respond to your request, however, I will aim to do this as soon as I am able to within the 28-day period.

You are entitled to ask for my records relating to our work together to be deleted within the 7-year period after our therapy has ended. Each application to do so will be considered on an individual basis and I will provide you with a decision to either accept or decline your request within 28 days. In order to make this decision I have to have authorisation from my insurers and membership bodies.

​The current Coronavirus contact tracing process has been established, in the public interest, to control the Covid-19 infection rate. If I, or anyone I encounter, develops Covid-19 symptoms I may be required to share your contact details with contact tracers. No details regarding the nature of our work will be shared.

Lauren Street Counselling strives to do its utmost to protect your data. However, in the event of a personal data breach the below action will be taken:

  • All breaches will be reported to you without delay

  • A record of any personal data breaches will be kept

  • The ICO will be informed in writing. My registration number is ZA463997

 

If you feel my handling of any data breach isn’t satisfactory you are within your rights to make a formal complaint to the Information Commissioners Office.

Data controller is Lauren Street and I can be contacted at laurenstreetcounselling@yahoo.com

LMSP Services Ltd, trading as Lauren Street Counselling, registered address:

7 Bell Yard

London

WC2A 2JR