This policy is designed to ensure that the information we have about you is used in an appropriate, legal, and secure manner. It is important for us that you understand that the way we handle your information is not only determined by ME policy or our good intentions. It is legislated through the Privacy Amendment (Private Sector) Act 2000, the Privacy Act 1988, Australian Privacy Act 2002, and Health Records Act 2002. It is also regulated by the Australian Psychological Society (APS) and the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA).
Here at ME, due to the nature of the services we provide, we are privileged to some of the most intimate, sensitive stories our Clients choose to share with us. We feel humbled by the trust our Clients bestow on us. As a result, we would like to emphasise that we care deeply about reciprocating this trust with utmost concern regarding our Clients’ privacy. We will not disclose any information without our Clients’ explicit permission for us to do so. Please note that this rule extends to the most trivial of things, like not being able to disclose to your partner when your next session is without you explicitly giving us permission to do so.
Here at ME, we are a learning organisation. That is to say that we employ what is called the “scientist-practitioner” model. As a result, your practitioner will ask your permission to use assessment, treatment, and symptom level data in order to perform a scientific investigation of a subject matter. This information will be stored separately, without your personal identifying information. Please note that our professionals are trained in empirical methods and undergo constant ongoing professional development. You do not have to agree to participate; it is your right to do so. Please see Research below; for more details on the research conducted at ME.
It is also important to us that you understand the limits to the confidentiality of your information, as there are circumstances, outside of our control, where we would need to disclose the minimal relevant information about you. One such event is if your psychologist forms the professional opinion that either you, the Client, or another individual is a risk for significant harm, a legal and a moral obligation may exist to act on this information with the aim of preventing such harm, regardless of your consent. In this case, only minimal information necessary to prevent this harm may be disclosed. Another such event is when our file is subpoenaed to court. Finally, some information, but not personally identifying information, may be discussed within professional development activities, with the intent to increase therapist’s skills and advance the field of psychology. This is done, so that ultimately, we service our Clients the best we possibly can.
Here at ME, your information is stored in a secure electronic manner. We believe that eliminating the need in paper copies of Client files may improve the security of our Clients’ personal data. As a result, we aim to create a truly paperless practice where possible. ; more on eHealth in Au
Who is conducting the research?
Your treating psychologist.
Who can participate?
This research aims to work with Clients of mind zone psychology (ME) who choose to participate in this study.
Why is the research being conducted?
As part of being a learning organisation, we regularly conduct research and participate in academic investigations into the effectiveness of different treatment modalities as applicable to variety of Client presentations.
What you will be asked to do?
Our Clients are not expected to perform any additional tasks. The research is conducted using the data collected in a course of typical psychotherapy. The results are then statistically analysed to provide empirical evidence guiding psychotherapy and assessments.
The expected benefits of the research
It is expected that the results of this research will contribute to better theoretical and practical foundations in psychotherapy and assessment in mental health.
Risks to you
I do not anticipate any risks to the participants in these studies.
Your confidentiality is ensured as neither your name nor any other identifying features are used in the calculations and the dissemination of the results. Your name is not stored with the assessment results, but is replaced with a meaningless number, which is used to track your results for future comparison.
Your participation is voluntary
If you wish, you may choose not to participate in the study. It is your right to do this if you wish.
If you still have questions about this research, please feel free to contact your therapist. If you wish to receive a summary of the results of the study you participated in, please let your therapist know. Of course, no personal data will be available, only group results.
The ethical conduct of this research
The Australian Psychological Society Code of Ethics guides the ethical conduct of this research. This is done under the direction of ME psychologist, who can be contacted if there are any concerns regarding the study. Alternatively, ME Regional Coordinator can be contacted on email@example.com
If you sign at the bottom of the information and consent sheet and then return it to the researcher it is deemed that you have given your consent to participate in this research project. Please, make a note of the information on this page in case you need to refer to it at a later date.
If you want to know more about privacy in the health sector in Australia, please visit the Office of the Privacy Commissioner, which was integrated into the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) here: http://www.privacy.gov.au/business/health
If you have any concerns regarding how we used your personal sensitive information, please contact the Regional Coordinator here: firstname.lastname@example.org