Who we are
Our website address is: https://samfordpsych.com.au.
This information is important for the optimal provision of psychological and psychiatric services. At the same time, it is also important that the information is appropriately managed in accordance with law and ethical guidelines of the profession.
The psychological and psychiatric services provided by the Principal and associated Contractors at Samford Psychology are governed by the legal requirements of the Commonwealth Privacy Act 1988 (“the Act”) and guided by the Australian Psychological Society – Code of Ethics (2007).
What is Personal information?
Personal information (for example, client contact details and treatment notes) is any information which identifies you or could reasonably be used to identify you.
Purpose of Collecting and Holding Information:
As part of providing a psychological or psychiatric service (assessment and therapy sessions) to you, your practitioner will need to collect and record personal information from you that is relevant to your current situation. Collecting this information will be a necessary part of the assessment and treatment that is conducted. You do not have to give all your personal information; however, you need to understand that the practitioner is only able to work with the information provided. Not disclosing information, for whatever reason, may limit the practitioner’s ability to accurately understand your situation and develop an effective treatment plan with you.
The information is gathered as part of the assessment, diagnosis and treatment of your condition, and is seen only by the treating practitioner. The information is retained in order to document what happens during sessions and enables the practitioner to provide a relevant and informed service.
Confidentiality: All personal information gathered by the practitioner during the provision of the assessment and treatment services will remain confidential and secure except where:
- It is subpoenaed by court, or
- Failure to disclose the information would place you or another person at serious and imminent risk of harm; or
- Your prior approval has been obtained to
- Provide a written report to another professional or agency (e.g. GP or lawyer) or
- Discuss the material with another person, (e.g. parent or employer) or if disclosure is otherwise required or authorized by law.
How is a clients’ personal information collected?
A client’s personal information is collected in a number of ways during psychological or psychiatric consultation with Samford Psychology, including when the client provides information directly to Samford Psychology, using hardcopy forms, correspondence via email, when the client interacts directly with Samford Psychology contractors and administrative employees, employees and contractors and when other health practitioners provide personal information to Samford Psychology during the course of a session, including via referrals, correspondence and medical reports.
Information provided by third parties
We will primarily collect information from you personally. We may also need to collect information from others who have known you a long time (such as a spouse or parent) or from others involved in your care (such as your GP). We will always endeavour to keep clients reliably informed of the information collected and the source of that information, and where appropriate will seek and obtain written informed consent to contact and retrieve that information.
Can you access your personal information?
Clients have a right to access your personal information held by Samford Psychology. Such requests need to be put in writing for security and recording purposes and to assist in finding the information for you.
Samford Psychology may refuse the request for such information, or limit the information so provided, where it is legally entitled to do so. We will endeavour to provide reasons for refusal. For example, release of information may be denied or limited where such release may have an unreasonable impact on the privacy of others or is considered frivolous or vexatious.
At any stage clients may request to view and correct the personal information about them kept on file. The Psychologist or Psychiatrist may discuss the contents with them and/or give them a copy, subject to any exceptions in the Privacy Act 1988. If satisfied that personal information is inaccurate, out of date or incomplete, reasonable steps will be taken in the circumstances to ensure that this information is corrected.
All requests by clients for access to or correction of personal information held about them should be lodged in writing with the Samford Psychology Practice Manager (Email: email@example.com). These requests will be responded to in writing within 30 days, and an appointment will be made if necessary, for clarification purposes.
Psychologists duty of care
All the psychologists and psychiatrists working out of Samford Psychology are guided by the Australian Psychological Society’s (APS’s) Code of Ethics (2007). Section A.4. of the Code relates to the appropriate collection of private information related to the provision of psychological services. Sections A.5. to A.7. of the Code relate to Confidentiality, the Release of Information to Clients, and the Collection of client information from associated parties. Section B.2. of the Code relates to appropriate record-keeping. The APS Code of Ethics (2007) can be obtained from the APS website (www.psychology.org.au).
It is noted that under section A.5.2.(c) of the Code that psychologists disclose confidential information obtained in the course of their provision of psychological services, “if there is an immediate and specified risk of harm to an identifiable person or persons that can be averted only by disclosing information” (p.15).
The Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) is responsible for the registration of psychologists throughout Australia. Through AHPRA, and under National Law, there are requirements for registered health practitioners to make mandatory notifications to prevent the public from being placed at risk of harm. Revised guidelines took effect from 17th March 2014.
Changes to this policy.
We may from time to time make changes to this policy to reflect changes in the law or professional best-practice guidelines. All clients and referrers are encouraged to periodically review this policy to remain informed.
Clients have a right to make a complaint about the handing of their personal information. Complaints can be made to Samford Psychology via email (firstname.lastname@example.org). We will endeavour to respond appropriately to reasonable complaints (i.e. not of a frivolous or vexation nature) within 30 days of the receipt of the email.
Other agencies to which clients may bring complaints are as follows:
The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (www.oaic.gov.au)
Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (www.ahpra.gov.au)
The Australian Psychological Society (www.psychology.org.au).
- By email: email@example.com
- By visiting this page on our website: https://samfordpsych.com.au/contact/
- By phone number: 07 3289 2992
- By mail: PO Box 660, Samford, Qld 4520
Effective Date: 10 August 2020