“Alex”; “Alex Brounger” and “abHypnotherapy” are used interchangeably in this document.
This Policy has been produced in order to explain what data Alex Brounger may collect from clients and how it is used or stored. It serves to help abHypnotherapy comply with the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR).
How long will you hold my information for?
Alex Brounger is a member of the following professional associations: CNHC; AfSFH and the NCH. As such he is bound by their regulations regarding the length of time Alex should hold onto client information. These Organisations insist that Alex Brounger hold onto your data for eight (8) years after your final session. However, the rule for children is different and these Organisations stipulate that their data must be held until their 25th birthday. The exception to this rule applies to young adults whose treatment ends when they are 17 years old when abHypnotherapy must keep their records until they reach their 26th birthday. Client records will be destroyed in the January after the dates given above. This is in line with NHS regulations for holding data.
What if I would like my data to be destroyed before this date?
I am professionally obligated to keep certain data. In particular I need to keep session notes and any communication pertaining to how I work with you. You can request that these be anonymized, and you can request that all identifying information be removed from my systems. In which case the identifying items will be removed and the documents stored with the use of coded filenames. The request for account deletion and anonymization can be sent to abHypnotherapy by email. There is no charge for this service.
Am I able to see or get a copy of the information held by abHypnotherapy?
In line with GDPR, if you send Alex Brounger a request in writing, specifying the data you wish to see, they will supply you with a copy of your data within 30 days. Alex Brounger will need to confirm your identity before sending you the information. There will be no charge for this service. NB Alex Brounger’s insurance company’s legal team may wish to verify any information abHypnotherapy sends out.
What and Why is the Data Collected?
Alex is keen to offer the highest quality support to his clients and in order to do so he will collect the following information:
- An idea of what you would like to achieve by coming for hypnotherapy
- A small amount of medical information
- Some brief session notes
- Your contact details
- GP contact details
- Some basic information about your important others
This information allows Alex to provide continuity within the sessions, in order to help you towards your goal. This information will allow Alex to refer to the content of earlier sessions and previous discussions. Alex will only use your contact details/address and GP’s details with your explicit consent (there are is one exception to this, please see below).
How do I know that abHypnotherapy will store my information safely?
Session notes will be taken on an electronic tablet which is secured by a PIN and/or face recognition or fingerprint recognition technology.
Initial consultation notes and any other sensitive data is stored as a PDF in a secure electronic folder which is protected by PIN and/or facial or fingerprint recognition technology.
Ongoing session notes are stored on a note taking app with username and password protection. Any notes with identifying pieces of data are transferred to the additionally protected folder detailed above.
Any paper notes will either be:
- Securely digitized and stored electronically, as above, and then destroyed or:
- Locked in a filing cabinet stored behind a locked door.
Alex’s mobile phone is fingerprint and/or pin protected.
abHypnotherapy’s email account is protected by a “Strong” password.
Are our discussions within the hypnotherapy sessions confidential?
Everything you discuss with Alex during your sessions remains strictly confidential. Occasionally it may be necessary for Alex to discuss elements of your sessions with his supervisor to ensure that he is helping you in the most effective way. However, no identifying features about you will be disclosed during these discussions. Alex’s supervisor is also registered with the ICO and abides by GDPR requirements.
What if I see Alex Brounger outside of a hypnotherapy session?
abHypnotherapy is obliged to protect your confidentiality at all times. So for this reason, although they may acknowledge you, it would be ideal if any further conversation could be avoided. However, if you wish to discuss your therapy with other people, that is your choice and you are very welcome to do so.
Will Alex Brounger discuss information about me with other health and social care professionals?
Alex Brounger is only able to contact other health and social care professionals with your written consent. Should he write to your GP, to notify them that you have entered into a therapeutic relationship with him, or to notify them that your therapy has been successfully concluded, Alex would require your consent, in line with GDPR requirements. Exceptions apply please see below.
When might confidentiality have to be broken?
Alex Brounger does have a ‘duty of care’ towards his clients. If he has reason to believe that you were about to harm yourself, or others, he may be professionally obliged to break this confidentiality. Should this occur then Alex would be required to inform the relevant authorities. However, Alex would always aim to discuss this with you before taking any action. Legally, Alex would also have to provide the police with information as set out in a warrant or court order, should the situation arise.
Who is the Data Controller and what is their ICO registration number?
The Data Controller is Alex Brounger (trading name: abHypnotherapy).
ICO registration number: Z3648960
This policy was last updated: September 2023.