What is an initial assessment and what does this involve?

An initial assessment is a meeting which is not a counselling session. Its purpose is to gain a better understanding of your background and your everyday struggles.

Within this meeting we discuss and sign the client agreement and we cover information around data protection, confidentiality and what you are to expect from the counselling process. We will work together to agree your goals and expectations.  At the end of this meeting, you will be offered an opportunity to book in for your first counselling session.

Will I have to sign up for a fixed number of appointments?

No.   There are no set minimum or maximum number of sessions. As the client, you decide when you feel you have achieved your goals and if you would like further appointments. If you wish to book a block of dates you are welcome to do so, otherwise after each subsequent session, I will ask if you wish to come again. 

Do you tell anyone what I talk about?

Confidentiality is an important part of counselling.  I fully adhere to the BACP (British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy) guidelines relating to confidentiality.  

Where do you store my information?

Any information or notes taken during/after counselling sessions are held securely, accessible only by me.  No other parties can gain access to them.  Within my working practice, I adhere to the Data Protection Act 1998 (General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) from 25 May 2018. Please see the following links for further information:

Data Protection Act 1998

Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) - Data Protection Principles

Information Commissioner's Office GDPR Guide

Calm Reflections Privacy Policy

I live in the Bromley area or visit Bromley, what happens if I see you outside of our appointment?

I agree with my clients that if I were to see them outside my appointments in Bromley or anywhere else, I do not acknowledge them or make any form of contact, either verbally or physically (e.g wave). This is to protect their confidentiality and also to avoid any breaches in boundaries of our therapeutic relationship.

Can I bring a friend for support?

No. In order to maintain client confidentiality, the meetings are held one to one, with only the counsellor and client present, unless it is couples counselling where both parties in the relationship may be present.

Your friend may bring you to the location of the therapy room, but as I do not have a designated waiting room, they will need leave you and come back for you at the end of your appointment.

Do you take credit cards or debit cards?

At present I can only accept cash payments.

Do I pay you in advance?

All payments are taken on the day of your therapy at the beginning of meeting. However, should you feel happier paying for your sessions in advance, I can accommodate that arrangement.

What happens if I miss an appointment?

If you are unable to attend a meeting or cannot come, I respectfully request 24 hours notice of any cancellations. 

Any cancellations made under 24 hours of an agreed appointment will result in you being charged for the missed session.

What happens if I have holidays booked?

If you have a holiday arrangement booked this is not an issue. If you are able to provide advance notice of the dates, I can note these. 

If I have holiday dates arranged, I will give you advance notice of my intentions so that you are aware and can plan support around these times. 

What happens if I want to end my therapy with you?

If you feel you are ready to end or do not wish to attend any further therapy, an ending session can be agreed. In our meeting, we review your journey and reflect on the changes you feel you have made.  Ending sessions are often helpful as it gives both the client and the counsellor time to feedback on how they have experienced working together.

 

© Calm Reflections 2018
Bromley, Beckenham, Orpington, south-east London Counsellor