Privacy Statement

At Opal Counselling, I Gemma Nethersole, am committed to complying with the terms of the General Data Protection Regulation Act (GDPR) 2018 and to the responsible and secure use of your personal data. I have a legitimate interest in processing personal data in order to provide a counselling service

This statement explains what personal information I collect and hold, why I collect that data, how long it is kept and your rights over your personal data. I am registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), reference ZA441196.

Information about you

* I collect personal information from you when you enquire about counselling in order to set up an initial appointment. This information includes contact details, your availability and other relevant personal information. I also make brief notes between our sessions to assist with the therapeutic process. Once you end counselling, all data regarding your counselling is stored securely for 7 years and then destroyed.

My use of this information

* Your personal information will be used only to provide you with counselling and to give you information relating to our sessions. I will not share your personal details with any other person or organisation without your knowledge and permission, unless there is a legal requirement, a safeguarding issue, or a perceived risk of harm. In these circumstances I would endeavour to consult you first.

* I will use a system of pseudonimisation to protect your identity in my notes. This means identifying information (such as your name) will be replaced by unidentifiable symbols or numbers.


* I will take all reasonable precautions to prevent the loss, misuse or alteration of information you give me.

* Communications in connection with your counselling may be sent by e-mail. For ease of use and compatibility, communications will not be sent in an encrypted form unless you require it and give me permission to communicate with you in that way. E-mail, unless encrypted, is not a fully secure means of communication. While I endeavour to keep my systems and communications protected from viruses and other harmful effects, I cannot bear responsibility for all communications being virus-free. I may also use the phone, including text, or postal mail to communicate with you, which will be agreed with you at commencement of counselling.

Your rights over your personal data

* You are welcome to see the information I hold about you at any time and may correct, update or delete any records, except those which I have a legal requirement to keep. Please discuss this with me and we will arrange a session for note review. If you have any concerns about my use of your data, please alert me. I will endeavour to resolve any concerns you have, but if they are not resolved to your satisfaction, you may choose to contact the ICO.