Terms and conditions
A session is defined as a meeting which has been agreed verbally or in writing, whether or not it is attended. The place and format of meeting, appointment time and length of session are mutually decided. A single therapy session usually takes place weekly or twice weekly and lasts for 50 minutes/an hour at the same time and place, but this may be negotiated according to need and circumstances.
An initial session is a meeting where we plan how to go forward before we agree to work together. In this session, which is chargeable, I would explore a little about your life story and what has brought you to therapy, and you could find out if you felt comfortable and at ease and wanted to continue. You would also have the chance to ask about anything else you may not be sure about. At this meeting we will look at scheduling future appointments. You will not be pressurised to make any decisions at this meeting. If we do decide to work together, we then formalise our own working agreement and agree an initial working period. At the end of the initial working period, we can then agree to book a further block of sessions or leave the work open-ended with continual reviews.
What is shared in the session will be treated as confidential. It will not be discussed outside the sessions except in the context of professional supervision and professional training. Any such references will always be anonymous and you could not be identified through them.
While confidentiality is essential, it is not absolute, and there are exceptions. In very few extreme circumstances, it might be necessary for me to pass on information. This would only be if there were a substantial possibility of serious harm to yourself or others or if I were legally impelled to impart information. If I had concerns in this area, I would talk to you as fully as possible before deciding to take any action. I aim to maintain the highest standards of good practice and safety. For this reason, I normally request the name and address of your General Practitioner.
If you do have any concerns whatsoever in this regard, please do raise them with me. I am fully insured.
In the unlikely event that our work has to terminate because, for example, I am involved in a serious accident, and I am unable to inform you personally, I will have entrusted a BACP registered and highly trusted colleague the task of contacting you and discussing the situation with you. In this event my colleague will then have access to your contact details and the basic details of what our work is e.g. long-term therapy, consultancy and any information that is ethically necessary to impart.
As part of good practice, a therapist is required to have some supervision of their work. I do not give my supervisor anything that might identify you. Supervision helps me to give you the best service that I can.