Privacy of personal information is a very important working principle to M Spiler Social Work Professional Corporation. We are committed to collecting, using, and disclosing personal information responsibly and only to the extent necessary to provide you with our treatment services. We do our very best and fully adhere to responsible and competent professional practices and ethical standards in accordance with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers, as well as being compliant with legislation outlined in the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Document Act, 2004 (PIPEDA) and the Personal Health Information Protection Act, 2004 (PHIPA).
The outline that follows will inform you about the personal information we collect, how it is used, and how we protect its confidentiality and your rights of this information.
The nature of the personal information we collect may include:
Information required to maintain a working file according to professional best practice standards and the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers, such as your
- Phone Numbers
- Date of Birth
- Other contact information, such as names of others who are relevant and significant to your situation (family members, your doctor, and other professionals) and sometimes their contact information
- We also collect information about your work and your actions in this regard, any correspondence sent or received, any consents or other documents you have signed, copies of papers you have given us, and other documentation particular to the nature of our involvement.
- Information necessary for billing purposes, which may include information about your Assistance Program and their standards, information about other third-party payers, copies of all receipts given to you including copies of electronic payments, copies of invoices and billing records and information related to the scheduling of appointments with you.
Information is collected for the following reasons:
- To maintain a clinical file or working file that meets the standards of best professional practices and the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers.
- To provide this service for you in a manner that ensures your privacy and safety.
- To maintain a high standard of professionalism in our provision of services.
- To assist in the process of billing for my services.
- To meet other legal and regulatory requirements.
- To maintain proper records pertaining to the operations of the professional corporation and conducting the business of providing treatment services, and to make these records available if requested.
There may be occasions when we ask you if we could speak with others about you and your situation. There may be times when you will ask us to do this as well. On these occasions, we will always discuss the information-sharing process with you, and we will jointly consider the potential benefits and risks before taking an agreed-upon action. We will then ask for your informed, written consent for us to share your information.
There may be occasions when we must share information about you or your situation without your written consent. These situations are very exceptional but may include the following:
- If we have information about abuse or risk of abuse to a child, we are legally bound and must report this to the proper authority.
- If we have a concern about any risk that you may do harm to yourself or harm to another person, then we must take action to ensure your safety or the safety of others.
- If we are required by law to release information such as receiving a subpoena to court, then we must do so.
- When disclosure is needed to receive professional or legal consultation.
- If I must defend myself against a complaint filed with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers or any other court action.
If other limits of confidentiality arise in your situation, we will identify and discuss them with you before proceeding with providing you with our treatment services. When we work individually with children and adolescents, we will attempt to keep parents informed of their child’s/adolescent’s progress and attempt to keep parents involved in the therapeutic process. However, in the case of older adolescents, they are afforded the right to appropriate and reasonable privacy.
We make every attempt to safeguard personal information. We would like you to know the following:
- Your file contains all the personal information about you and your situation, except for copies of billing information, such as receipts and electronic payments.
- All files are stored in a locked cabinet in a secured locked area. We do not store information about you in a computer. If we prepare a document about you on the computer, it will be stored on a portable storage device and removed from the computer immediately. Your file is maintained according to regulations set by the profession and the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers and in accordance with other legal requirements. When information about you is no longer required, it is cross-cut shredded and disposed of by us. In the event of incapacity or death, a designated social worker would have some access to your information in order to assist you in a transfer to another therapist or to maintain the file according to legal and regulatory standards. This social worker would also be a member of the College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers and would be obligated to provide all services to the same standard that we would.
If you have additional questions or require clarification about the above information, you can contact Mario Spiler, Registered Social Worker, MSW, RSW at firstname.lastname@example.org