The counselling service is confidential. We will not discuss anything about you outside of the Student Wellbeing Service without your explicit agreement, except in exceptional circumstances (for example, we would have a duty to inform your GP if we were concerned that there was a serious risk of harm to yourself or others).
All counsellors are required to undertake regular supervision of their counselling work. Supervision involves case material being discussed. Overall client confidentiality is still safeguarded as individual identifying information is not revealed.
Confidentiality is a most important part of this service, and the service subscribes to the ethical framework of the BACP (British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy).
You can read the Student Wellbeing Service Service confidentiality policy in full (PDF). The confidentiality policy provides detailed information on confidentiality and data protection procedures.
We store data in accordance with the Data Protection Act. Counsellors keep their own records of their work, and these notes are held securely and confidentially for six years, after which they are destroyed. These records do not form part of any other record system within the university.
We also store basic information about each student on a secure and confidential database, which is also kept separate from any other student record system. This information is used to compile aggregate data and monitor the service as a whole. No information that can be traced back to individuals will be released by the counselling service.
Causes for Concern
Staff may find the Cause for Concern publication useful. This publication provides guidance for working with students who are in difficulty. Staff may also need to use the Incident Report Form. There is also a supplement for Wardens and Sub-Wardens in Halls of Residence.