In order to get the maximum benefit from our work together, it is important that we establish a contract that covers confidentiality, time-keeping, emergency procedures and the code of ethics I abide by.
Code of ethics: I am a registered member of BACP (British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy) and I abide by their code of ethics. You can access it here: www.bacp.co.uk/ethical_framework
Confidentiality: As your counsellor, I am ethically required to protect your confidentiality. Everything you choose to share with me during our sessions stays with me and is not disclosed to third parties. (For information on the supervision process, please see below.)
Please note that there are some legal exceptions to your right to confidentiality: If I believe you are at risk of causing serious harm to yourself or others, I must inform the relevant authorities. Similarly, if I receive information from you regarding ongoing abuse towards a child or a vulnerable adult, I will be forced to break confidentiality. When possible, I will inform you before I take any action.
Supervision: All counsellors are required to have regular supervision sessions in order to ensure that they maintain best level of care. While I may discuss specific clients with my supervisor, I protect their anonymity by withholding names and any other identifying details.
Emergency procedure: If, during a session, I feel that you are in need of emergency support, I may ask your permission to contact your GP or next of kin. However, I, personally, am unable to provide emergency support to clients. In such a situation, you must call your GP or visit your nearest A&E. You could also call the Samaritans on 08457 909090 or visit their website www.samaritans.org
Assessment session: An assessment session gives you a chance to meet me, ask any questions you may have about the process and decide whether you would like to commence therapy. In return, I get the opportunity to find out about your background, symptoms and expectations of therapy and assess whether the kind of therapy I do would be beneficial to you.
Missed sessions: In order to get the maximum benefit from therapy, you need to commit yourself to a number of weekly 50 minute sessions. These sessions will usually be held at the same day of the week, same time and same place where possible. If you think you will be unable to attend a session, I would ask that you inform me of this at least 24 hours before your session.
Please note that cancellations with less than 24 hours notice and unattended sessions will incur the full fee.
Lateness: I understand there may be unforeseen situations which result in you being late for your appointment. I will allow at least 20 minutes for you to turn up if you have not contacted me. I will also make attempts to contact you but if they fail, I will treat this as an unattended session. If you do turn up, the session will end at the normal scheduled time and you will be charged the full fee.
Payment: There are three alternative methods of payment. Cash (for face to face counselling only), bank transfer and through PayPal. Please note that if you are paying for a bundle of sessions, payment needs to be processed before we commence the first session. If you opt to pay for individual sessions, this needs to be done on the day of each session.
Social media policy: I do not accept friend or contact requests from current or former clients on any social networking site (Facebook, LinkedIn, etc) as doing this may blur the boundaries of our therapeutic relationship and has the potential to compromise your confidentiality and our respective privacy. I have a professional page on facebook (@denizbaloglucounselling) where I occasionally share counselling and psychotherapy related material and you are welcome to use your own discretion in choosing whether to follow me.