Policy

  1. Standards of Practice
  2. Starting and Ending Services
  3. Client Information
  4. Cancellations
  5. Fees
  6. Confidentiality
  7. Phone Counselling
  8. Walking Counselling
  9. Home Counselling
  10. Communication

Standards of Practice

As a registered social worker (RSW) with the BC College of Social Workers (BCCSW) I am bound by the Codes of Ethics and Practice of the BCCSW which can be found here

In the event of you being unhappy with the service you receive, please discuss this with me. If you feel unable to do so or do not receive satisfactory resolution, then you have the right to complain to my professional body, the BCCSW here

Starting and Ending Services

You choose when to start and end counselling, and you may return any time you wish. I will strive to provide you value within every counselling session and if you aren’t satisfied you can always discontinue counselling and begin again at a later time. I will stop counselling if I am unable to help you and in that event I will make an effort to refer you to a more appropriate service if that is what you desire.

Client Information

Professional standards of practice require me to store client records which includes information collected in forms, session notes, and all communication. You will have access to these through the online counselling portal so that you can track your own progress and review previous session notes. These records are kept not less than 7 years according to the BCCSW standards of practice. 

Cancellations

It is understood that sometimes sudden events, such as emergencies, happen that may make it necessary for you to cancel your appointment last minute or fail to attend and are unable to provide notification. If you fail to give less than 24 hours notice of your intention to cancel or postpone an agreed session you will be charged for the full amount for the session. Please notify any change via the direct message. If for any reason you are late for a session, I will see you for the duration of the remainder but will be unable to work beyond the allotted time.

There may also be occasions when sessions may be cancelled because of illness or because of attending training sessions or meetings. I will try to give you as much notice as possible (minimum 24 hours) of any cancellation, and will offer an alternative time. If I fail to give you 24 hours of notice I will provide you a session for free. 

Fees

Payment should be made at the end of each session. Credit and Debit cards are acceptable forms of payment. All payments are not subject to GST. as I am a registered social worker and qualify as a healthcare provider but are subject to provincial sales tax which is 7%. Invoices for services will be provided which can be used for remuneration from insurance companies if they provide coverage. If payments for therapy are not completed within 24 hours of the session then I reserve the right to terminate therapy. 

Confidentiality

Confidentiality will be maintained within the BCCSW standards of practice and relevant legislation (Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, and the Personal Information Protection Act). Everything that is discussed in your sessions is confidential and will not be communicated to anyone without your knowledge and written consent. By law, there are just a few exceptions to this strict confidentiality:

  • when there is an imminent risk of you harming yourself or others
  • when there is suspicion or disclosure of abuse/neglect of a child 
  • when client records are subpoenaed by court order

All reasonable efforts will be made to discuss these circumstances with you prior to the involvement of other professionals. As part of my code of practice I am required to carry out continuing professional development, and to engage in regular on-going clinical supervision. This is to ensure an ethical and professional service to clients. I may discuss your case in supervision but would not use any identifying details. If I wish to record a session I will ask you first and obtain written consent. 

Phone Counselling 

To ensure your safety the following requirements must be observed if you are receiving counselling over the phone.  Please refrain from driving, cycling, or participating in any other activity that could result in injury to you or others should you be distracted by our conversation. It is permissible to walk during tele-health sessions. 

Walking Counselling

Evidence shows that walking while talking stimulates brain activity and can help facilitate the therapy process. I will encourage you to walk during the session’s regardless of the weather as the physical activity alone will support mental health and increase your engagement in the session. 

Home COUNSELLING

In the event that a session takes place at your home please abide by the following guidelines. Have another person over the age of 19 present in the home. Dress appropriately, as you would if you were attending an appointment at your Doctor’s office. The session will take place in a room that ensures privacy (is reasonably sound proof) unless you desire to have other people present during the session for a specific reason, such as family counselling. 

Communication

All client communication must be done through the secure client online portal. Social media platforms will not be used to communicate with the public, current, or past clients. If you have questions related to your specific situation please bring them up during your counselling session. If you are experiencing a mental health crisis please call the BC crisis line at 1-800-784-2433 or if you feel you are unsafe call 911.