Will I Have Privacy?
Counseling often involves the disclosure of sensitive personal information. Any information a student shares with Center staff members is protected by professional ethics and state law. Therefore, no acknowledgment of your counseling status, nor information about your counseling will be released except upon your written permission or as may be required by law. There are a few exceptions to confidentiality of which you should be aware before you begin counseling.
1. Staff Consultations and Supervision.
The Center staff operates as a team in order to provide the best possible service to students. Therefore, it is possible that the staff member which whom you are working may consult with other staff members. These consultations are for professional and/or training purposes only. Additionally, from time to time we have counseling interns working with us who are supervised by a professional staff member.
2. Abuse of Children.
Staff members who know or reasonably suspect that a child under the age of 18 is being abused or neglected are legally obligated to report this situation to the appropriate state agency.
3. Imminent Harm to Self.
If staff members believe you are in danger of physically harming yourself and are unwilling or unable to follow treatment recommendations, they may seek your admission to a hospital and/or may contact a family member or another person who may be able to help protect you.
4. Imminent Harm to Others.
If staff members have reason to believe that you are actually threatening physical violence against another person or if you have a history of physically violent behavior and if they believe that you are an actual threat to the safety of another person, they may be required to take some action to insure that the other person is protected. Such action may include: contacting the police, notifying the other person, and/or seeking involuntary hospitalization.
The situations described in 2, 3, and 4 are extremely rare. If they should occur, however, it is the Center's policy that, whenever possible, we will discuss with you any action that is being considered. You should be aware that we are not legally obligated to inform you or seek your permission, especially if such a discussion would prevent us from securing your safety or the safety of others. If disclosure of confidential information does become necessary, we will release only the information necessary to protect you and/or another person