In general, email communications and text messaging are neither secure nor confidential. Service providers may retain copies of all emails or text messages in the records of their systems which may be accessed by someone by accident or by someone with malicious intent. While it is unlikely that someone will be looking at these records, the fact is, they are available to be read by the system administrator or other employees of the service provider. Records of email communications or text messages may also be accessed on your computer or your phone, even after being deleted. This also has the potential to compromise your confidentiality. With your permission, I may use unencrypted email or text messaging to arrange or modify appointments or for other administrative tasks. If you want to send an email with content related to your therapy sessions, you should use encrypted email. You may ask for additional details if you are interested in this option. Please do not text confidential information. Note that all email communications sent and received between us become part of the Therapy Notes in your record.
I do not contact, connect, respond, or follow potential, current, or former clients on any social media platform such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. These sites are not secure and cannot protect your confidentiality. Do not use wall postings, @replies, private messages, or any other means of engaging with me on a social media platform, especially if we have already established a client/therapist relationship.
Comprehensive Addiction Solutions, LLC may have a page on Facebook as a business page. This is for my professional practice. You may not “friend” me personally or become a “fan” of my business page on Facebook. This type of interaction could compromise your confidentiality, blur the boundaries of our therapeutic relationship, and has the potential to suggest a solicited endorsement which is prohibited by the ethics codes of my profession. You are welcome to read or share my articles and posts as you feel it is appropriate. If you are interested in Comprehensive Addiction Solutions LLC updates and posts, consider subscribing or following the page via RSS feed. This permits personal access without public visibility.
Comprehensive Addiction Solutions LLC may have a professional feed via Twitter. This is a place where I post mental health or addiction news and I follow other health, mental health, and addiction professionals. I will not follow potential, current, or former clients on Twitter. I would request thoughtful consideration and discrimination on your part in making a decision to follow me on Twitter. If you do choose to follow me on Twitter, we may need to discuss the effects of this choice on our work together and on your confidentiality. Again, if you are interested in my Twitter updates, consider using an RSS feed or a Twitter list. This permits personal access and eliminates public visibility.
I have a professional page listed under my name on LinkedIn. This is a place that I network with other professionals in the mental health, health care, and addictions field. I will not link or respond to requests from potential, current, or former clients on LinkedIn.
My psychotherapy practice may be listed on business listing sites such as Yelp, Healthgrades, Yahoo Local, Bing, or others. These sites allow users to rate their providers and they publish these reviews publicly. I do not publish my practice information on these sites, they seek out information through search engines and automatically add business listings to their site without requesting permission. If you see a listing for my psychotherapy practice on any of these sites, be aware that I am not requesting a testimonial, rating, or endorsement from you as my present or former client. The ethics code of my profession clearly states that it is unethical and prohibitive for social workers to solicit testimonials.
Confidentiality policies do not pertain to the client, they pertain only to mental health professionals. You may choose to express yourself or provide feedback on any site. You are more than welcome to share with whomever you wish the name of your therapist, your feelings about the treatment you have received, or how you feel about your therapy work in any forum of your choosing. However, should you choose to write something on a business review site, be aware that you may be sharing personally revealing information in a public setting. For your privacy and safety, you should only post information anonymously so that it cannot be linked to or identify you in any way. In order to protect your confidentiality, I will not respond to any review, either positive or negative, on any of these sites.
It is my intention to form a safe and constructive working relationship with you and my request is that if you have a strong opinion or feeling about the work we are doing together, express it to me directly. It allows me the courtesy of awareness regarding your feelings and opinions and it provides a forum for healthy discussion. If you feel I have done something harmful or unethical and you do not feel comfortable discussing it with me, you can always contact the Licensing Board, which oversees licensing, and they will conduct a review.
Location-based services on cell phones and tablets contain privacy issues. I have not enabled my professional practice as a check-in location on any location based service sites. If you have GPS tracking enabled on your cell phone or other electronic devices and you use it to check in to places either automatically or manually, this may compromise your confidentiality. It is possible that others could make an assumption that you are in therapy with me if you allow check-ins at my office. This should be done only after careful review and consideration on your part.