As is standard practice for all good clinicians, we maintain written records of the sessions we have with patients, which allows us to provide you with consistent quality care. The information disclosed to me in your sessions, and recorded in your file, is entirely confidential, and may not be revealed to anyone (other than the professionals in our office) without your written permission, except in the following legal circumstances:
Suicide – if it is clear to us that you are in danger of attempting suicide, we are required by law to inform the police and/or emergency paramedics.
Danger to others – If it is clear to us that you have an intention to harm another person whom you have identified, and you have a plan to do so, we are required by law to notify the local police, and to take steps to warn that person.
Gravely Disabled – If it is clear to us that you are unable to take basic care of yourself, and maintain your safety, we are required by law to alert the police and paramedics about your situation.
Abuse of Others – If, during the course of your treatment, you report the details of sexual or physical abuse – of yourself, or of others, especially a child or an elder – and if you have provided the name and address of the perpetrator or the person being abused, we are required by law to file a report with the County Department of Social Services.
Subpoena or Court Order – Occasionally, a legal situation may mandate that we produce records of our work together. In every case, we will request your written consent, without which we will claim confidentiality.
These situations rarely happen during the treatment process, so the list above should not present you with any serious concern.
If you are under 18, the law may provide your parents the right to examine your treatment records. In any event, if you are under 18, both you and your parent will be required in writing to acknowledge the terms of our engagement to provide you our services.