All Newsletters : June 2001 : Client Confidentiality
The Child Migrant Friendship Society recently asked some questions of C-BERS in relation to the management of client records. C-BERS understands that client confidentiality is a very important issue for many of you. Listed below are some of the questions we have been asked about how personal information is recorded and who has access to it. We would appreciate hearing your views and wishes about these matters.
IS THERE A FILE ON ME?
When you become a client of C-BERS we need to keep a record of all our dealings with you. To maintain security, files on our clients are given a number rather than being filed by name. Only authorised C-BERS’ staff can have access to your file, which is kept in a locked cabinet.
WHAT’S ON MY FILE?
Your file contains copies of any documents you give to us and any completed application forms.
For legal and accountability purposes we also keep a copy of any letter you write to us and any letters we write to you or to anyone else on your behalf.
Your counsellor also keeps notes of their discussions with you so that they can bring themselves up to date with your situation if they haven’t had contact with you for some time or if another worker takes over as your counsellor.
CAN I HAVE ACCESS TO MY FILE?
Yes, if you wish to view your file it will be necessary to make an appointment with your counsellor for this purpose.
IS INFORMATION ABOUT ME
EVER GIVEN TO ANYONE ELSE?
We must, except in emergency cases, have your express consent before we can speak on your behalf to another person, e.g. the travel agent, your doctor, another agency such as Catholic Migrant Centre, etc. Note: C-BERS has NEVER had occasion to release information about a client without the client’s agreement.
WHAT HAPPENS TO MY FILE
WHEN I STOP GOING TO C-BERS?
Your file is kept securely locked on C-BERS’ premises. We welcome your suggestions on what should happen to old files in the future.