This is an agreement, mutually negotiated between the ‘Counsellor’ and the ‘Client’, prior to the commencement of the Counselling Sessions (hereinafter referred to as the ‘Sessions’). The Sessions are meant to assist and direct the Client in achieving goals pertinent to work and personal life.
It is hereby affirmed that all the Counsellors working at Mindworks Counselling Services (hereinafter referred to as the ‘Organization’), are registered under Indian Laws and follow a strict code of professional ethics.
This agreement hereinafter states the responsibilities of the Counsellor and the Client.
It is hereby stated that everything discussed between the Counsellor and the Client, during the Sessions, are strictly confidential in nature. The Organization requires the Counsellor to discuss their work with their Supervisor/s from time to time. However, during such discussion, personal information the Client will not be devoid. Any information received by the Supervisor/s shall be considered confidential in nature, being subjected to the same ethical criteria as the Counsellor.
An expressed consent of the Client will be taken, in case a need arises for sharing information, obtained from the Client during the Sessions, with a third party.
However, the following circumstances are exceptions to the abovementioned statement, whereby the exceptions include but are not limited to the following :
if the Client is under the age of 18 years, the parents or the legal guardian(s) may have access to the records and may authorize the release of the same to a Third Party;
and/or when a case is transferred;
and/or if the Client is reasonably suspected to be in danger of harming oneself or another;
and/or if the Client discloses the act of abuse or neglect of children, the elderly or disabled persons;
and/or to help qualify the Client for certain kinds of evaluation;
and/or if the Client is part of a criminal proceeding;
and/or for legal or regulatory actions against a professional;
and/or upon the issuance of a court order or lawfully issued subpoena;
and/or where otherwise legally required.
Important Note Regarding Confidentiality: If the Client is seeking any form of medical assistance, especially pertinent to emotional difficulties, the Client is under the obligation to inform the Counsellor. The Counsellor will not confer with the Doctor unless expressed permission is granted by the Client. However, in the event of a reasonable indication of an intent to cause self-harm or harm to others, this aspect of confidentiality will not be maintained. Steps will be taken to inform the Doctor and/ or the Police, emergency services and/or any appropriate third party. Furthermore, the Counsellor may consult a psychiatrist, regarding medical concerns regarding the Client and/or on behalf of the Client and/or in order to gain psycho-education regarding medication.
The Counsellor may maintain notes for every Session, which shall be stored securely. Occasional audio recording of Sessions, in lieu of monitoring their work, maybe undertaken, but with prior knowledge of the Client. The same shall be stored securely and destroyed after its use.
ACCESS TO SERVICES:
In case of scheduling, rescheduling or cancellation of Session, the Client may contact the number provided for the same. This number should not be misused by the Client.
Additionally, in case of an imminent crisis, please contact 100 or visit the local emergency room.
If the Client is suffering from suicidal thoughts, immediately contact AASRA Foundation’s 24×7 helpline +91-9820466726. In addition to this, the Client may contact the Counsellor.
The Client is under the obligation to inform the Counsellor about the contact details of self. It is to be noted, that the Organization is not a crisis intervention service, therefore, if the Client needs any form of assistance, the Client should contact the GP immediately.
Each Individual Session will be held for 50 minutes, whereas each Couples’ Session will be held for 90 minutes. In case of extension, an extra 25 % of the Standard Fees will be charged for every 15 minutes.
The entire time of the Session is allotted to the Client. If the Session begins late, due to the lateness of the Client, the Counsellor shall adjust the appointment in a manner that is conducive to not result in an overlap with the consecutive Client’s session. Furthermore, the Counsellor shall engage with the Client for the remainder of the time, unless an expressed extension of time is requested by the Client. Lastly, it is stated that the Counsellor will be available for the entirety of the Session time. However, in case the Client does not arrive within 15 mins of the stated appointment time, the Counsellor shall declare the Session as concluded, due to the absence of the Client.
It is stated that the Client has the obligation to share information that is true to the best of their knowledge. The Client is expected to complete any form of outside assignment, that has been agreed upon by both the parties, during the course of the Session.
In case of any form of discomfort faced by the Client because/during the course of the Sessions, the Client should inform the Counsellor. Informing the Counsellor, may help have a better guided Session with the Client, in order to resolve the discomfort.
A review of progress can be held after the initial 3 Sessions of counselling, in order to ascertain whether the Sessions are being helpful and whether they should be continued.
CANCELLATION AND REFUNDS AND HOLIDAYS:
If the Client is unable to attend a Session, the Client may cancel the appointment, up to two hours prior to the appointment time. The client is eligible for 100% refund in this case. However, a charge of 25% of the standard fees will be levied for cancellation done within less than two hours prior to the appointment. Additionally, in case of a failure to cancel and an absence from the Session will result in the Client being charged 50% of the standard fees, for this Session.
Rescheduling of the appointment shall be done at the convenience of the Client and the Counsellor.
The Counsellor shall be available for all appointment days, except personal holidays or due to illness. Unavailability of the Counsellor will be notified to the Client, well within reasonable time along with ensuring a re-schedule of the appointment. In the case of a missed session due to unavailability of the Counsellor, the Client shall not be charged any fee.
Under any said circumstances where the Counsellor is subjected to any form of sexual harassment, the Counsellor is at liberty to terminate the Session immediately. Sexual Harassment may include actions such as any form of comments, physical contact, advances involving unwelcomed and explicit sexual overtures; or demanding or requesting of sexual favours; or showing pornography against the will of the Counsellor; or making sexually coloured remarks.
It is duly stated that the cancellation charges mentioned above are subjected to review. In case of a change, the same shall be iterated to the Client accordingly.
FACE-TO-FACE CONTACT OUTSIDE SESSIONS:
It is stated that in case the Client comes across the Counsellor, within social circumstances, the Counsellor will refrain from forming any form of contact with the Client. This is to protect the privacy and confidentiality of the Client.
Alternatively, if the Client initiates any form of communication within such social circumstances, the Counsellor may respond appropriately and in a professional manner.
It is stated that if circumstances arise, whereby the Client and the Counsellor are part of the same social or professional group, the Counsellor has the right to withdraw from such a Client-Counsellor relation.
DATA PROTECTION STATEMENT:
It is stated that the Organization keeps confidential records of the Client. The records being stored with the Organization are made accessible to authorized personnel only. The information may be used anonymously in order to produce practice statistics and to improve the services of the Organization.
Information collected by the Counsellor may be termed as sensitive information, which includes but is not limited to gender, sexuality, racial or ethnical origin, political opinions, religious beliefs, physical or mental health, relationship, sexual life, criminal proceedings and convictions. Personal and sensitive data provided by the Client is being used to provide services of the highest quality to the Client.
Presently, as per policy, the Organization holds records for up to a year before securely destroying it. The destruction takes place as per the Guidelines on the Destruction of Sensitive Information.
It is noted that in an event of turning digital, the Organization will hold records for a total of 3 years before destroying it securely.
A standard amount of fees is being charged by the Organization for rendering its services. The Client is expected to transfer the fees 24 hours prior to the appointment time.
Extra charges are levied for Tests and additional services.
It is duly stated that the charges are subjected to yearly review and in case of a change in the fees, the same shall be iterated to the Client accordingly.
UNDERTAKING BY THE CLIENT:
I, The Client, do hereby declare that, I have read this agreement carefully. That I have clarified and confirmed the terms and conditions as stated within this agreement.
I affirm that I understand my rights to access my personal data being held by M/s Mindworks Counselling Services. Additionally, I give my consent to Mindworks Counselling Services to use my personal and sensitive data for the purposes of delivering Counselling Sessions to me, along with the permit to use my data for the purposes of improving and management the quality of service being delivered by Mindworks Counselling Services, including fundraising and commissioning of services.
This abovementioned agreement is fully understood and agreed to by the Client.