Client Privacy and Confidentiality

The following Personal/Health Information Privacy Commitment policy details how E-Chat Counselling Inc. protects clients’ confidential information.

E-Chat Counselling Inc. will guard your confidential information in the following ways:

  • E-Chat Counselling Inc. will limit the collection, use and disclosure of information to what is necessary to provide services.
  • E-Chat Counselling Inc. will ensure that only staff who have a need to know will have access to client information.
  • All E-Chat Counselling Inc. team members will abide all privacy commitments.
  • E-Chat Counselling Inc. will not share client information to anyone unless E-Chat has been authorized by the client or are required by law.
  • E-Chat Counselling Inc. will endeavor to keep client files accurate and up to date.

Online Security – Safeguards

There are extensive safeguards built into the E-Chat website and the servers’ operating system it runs on. E-Chat ensures protected end-to-end encryption across all devices. All communication and registration information on the website is encrypted using SSL/TLS technology.

We chose partners who provide encrypted software to ensure our sessions are private and secure. These software providers have solid security measures as they are used by other counsellors in British Columbia.

All personal information is deleted when it is no longer necessary to deliver the service, or immediately when a user closes their account, except as required by law to retain.

Personal Information

Your counsellor is registered with the British Columbia Association of Clinical Counsellors or the British Columbia College of Social Workers (or both) and are required to follow their Standards of Practice. Executive coaches may not be registered but do below to other professional organizations.

Personal information is collected during intake and assessment for to provide you an effective intervention plan. We protect its confidentiality and your rights regarding this information.

The nature of personal information that E-Chat may include is:

  • Information required to create and maintain a working file according to the standards of practice of their College such as name, address and phone number. Your counsellor will gather information about your session including notes to reflect the scope of the work and your counsellor’s recommendations, any correspondence sent or received, any consents or other documents you have signed, copies of papers you have given your counsellor, and other documents in relation to the nature of your involvement.
  • Information necessary for billing purposes, such as receipts.
  • Any information regarding appointments, cancellations, and scheduling.

Your therapist will collect this information for the following reasons:

  • To maintain a clinical chart or file that meets the standards of the BCACC/ BCCSW or both.
  • To maintain a high standard of professionalism in the provision of Service.
  • For billing purposes.
  • As part of legal and regulatory requirements.
  • As part of business operations.

Confidentiality may waived under circumstances where your counsellor is legally required by law in the following situations:

  • If the therapist believes that there is the risk of harm to self or others.
  • If the therapist assesses that a child may have been harmed in the past, or that a child is at risk of harm in the present or future. In all cases, the therapist has a legal duty to report this information.
  • If the therapist is bound to report a colleague to their College for professional misconduct; and/or
  • If the therapist is required to defend themselves against a complaint filed with their College.

Your counsellor will make every attempt to protect your personal information. You need to know the following:

  • Your file contains all the personal information about you and your situation.
  • Files are secured on an encrypted drive/secure database or locked in an office cabinet.
  • Your counsellor will not store your information on a computer un-encrypted.
  • Your name is maintained according to regulations set by the profession and their College and in accordance with other legal requirements.
  • When information about you is no longer required, it is destroyed or deleted from an encrypted drive.
  • In the event of client transfer, incapacity or death, a designated therapist may have access to your information in order to assist you in a transfer to another therapist or to maintain the file according to legal and regulatory standards.

Your Rights

  • You have the right to request to see any personal information that your counsellor has gathered.
  • You have the right to review your file. Your counsellor will help you understand what has been written in your chart, should you need clarification. If you think some information is not accurate, you can request that the information be changed.

Using E-Chat on Wi-Fi and Hotspots

We advise against using public Wi-Fi networks or Hotspots during sessions. We recommend using cell phone provider’s data plan or an Ethernet connection in a private location as your information may be at risk when using public Wi-Fi networks. It is your responsibility to ensure your end of communication is secure and private.

Cookies

The E-Chat Counselling Inc. web site may use “cookies” to help you personalize your online experience. A cookie is a text file that is placed on your hard disk by a web page server. Cookies cannot be used to run programs or deliver viruses to your computer. Cookies are uniquely assigned to you, and can only be read by a web server in the domain that issued the cookie to you.

One of the primary purposes of cookies is to provide a convenience feature to save you time. The purpose of a cookie is to tell the web server that you have returned to a specific page. For example, if you personalize E-Chatcounselling.ca pages, or register with E-Chatcounselling.ca site or services, a cookie helps E-Chatcounselling.ca to recall your specific information on subsequent visits. This simplifies the process of recording your personal information, such as billing addresses and so on. When you return to the same E-Chatcounselling.ca web site, the information you previously provided can be retrieved, so you can easily use the E-Chatcounselling.ca features that you customized.

You have the ability to accept or decline cookies. Most web browsers automatically accept cookies, but you can usually modify your browser setting to decline cookies if you prefer. If you choose to decline cookies, you may not be able to fully experience the interactive features of the E-Chat Counselling Inc. services or websites you visit.