Confidentiality is an essential element of counseling and one of your most important rights. Within certain legally defined limitations, any information revealed by you or learned about you from another source during the course of counseling will be kept strictly confidential and will not be revealed to any other person or agency without your written permission. If a request for information about you is made, we will discuss it with you, if at all possible, even if you have already signed a release. However, since this policy does have some exceptions, you should read the following information very carefully.
The standards of the counseling profession require that your counselor keep treatment records. These records enhance our ability to provide you with appropriate treatment and are often useful to individuals with whom you may consult or to another counselor. Your counselor will limit the information included in the record so as to maximally protect your privacy.
- If you request it, your counselor will provide you, or an individual that you designate, a summary of your records.
- If you desire, you have the right to review your treatment records. It is the Student Counseling Center's policy that you discuss the reasons for your request prior to such review and that your counselor be present when you examine the records.
You should be aware, however, that there are certain situations in which your counselor may be required by law to reveal information obtained during counseling to other persons or agencies without your permission. The first situation is if you threaten grave bodily harm to another or to yourself. A second situation is if a court of law issues a court order requiring production of specific information. Such court ordered breaches of confidentiality are rare. If you have questions or concerns about this, please discuss this with your counselor. In addition, by law your counselor must report suspected abuse/neglect of a child or an incapacitated adult that is communicated by you.
At times your counselor may have the need to consult with other counseling professionals about your treatment. In these cases, we will treat any information you have shared with your counselor with sensitivity and tact.
Arrangements to consult via email may be made with your counselor. Unlike personal counseling, however, we are unable to guarantee the confidentiality of your email correspondence with us.
Should you desire further clarification regarding confidentiality or any other aspect of the counseling services we offer, you are encouraged to discuss these issues with your counselor and/or with John R. Langevin, Ph.D., assistant dean of students for Student Support Services and director of counseling.
Client Bill of Rights
As a client, you have the right:
- To expect that a psychologist/clinical counselor has met the qualifications as required by state law.
- To examine public records maintained by the licensure boards which contain the credentials of the psychologist/clinical counselor.
- To obtain a copy of the Codes of Ethics.
- To report complaints to the licensing boards.
- To obtain information about your case records and to have the information explained to you clearly and directly.
- To expect complete confidentiality except as required by law.
- To refuse any recommended services and to be advised of the consequences of this action.
The practice of counseling is regulated by the Department of Professional and Financial Regulation. Complaints can be registered as follows:
Board of Counseling Professionals Licensure
62 State House Station
Augusta, ME 04333-0062
Phone: (207) 624-8634