Narelle is obligated by the Australian Privacy Principles and the Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW) code of ethics to keep information provided by the client confidential. This is also vitally important for the client to feel safe and speak freely. Narelle takes notes in sessions for assessment and treatment purposes but will only break confidentiality if there is a duty of care issue. Should there be safety concerns for an individual Narelle is obligated to contact relevant authorities. If Narelle needs to communicate with other services eg. a client’s general practitioner, she will gain consent from you via a consent form.
Records will be kept for 7 years and then destroyed. The client may access their file if they wish, which is simply a record of issues discussed and any correspondence with others. Records are kept for assessment and treatment purposes.
Sometimes children are worried that their parents will be upset with them for things they are thinking or have done. Therefore it is important to allow children to speak in therapy without fear their words will be reported back to their parent. Where possible Narelle will gain the child/young person’s permission to discuss a particular issue with their parent. Her strong desire is for children to be able to talk directly to their parents about issues and she will encourage the child/young person to do this. However, her work needs to be client centred and as such she asks for parents to trust her clinical judgement and allow for confidentiality to apply to the child/young person receiving therapy. For example, a child who is upset about mum and dad separating may not want to talk to the a parent about it because they fear they will upset the parent or feel ashamed and think that it is their fault. These situations take sensitivity and patience.
Narelle is an accredited mental health social worker with the AASW who practices according to their ethical code. If you have any concerns regarding Narelle’s practice please raise them with her directly or address them to the AASW.