The relationship between patient and psychologist is confidential and protected by law. In order to release information about treatment, a Consent to Release Information form needs to be completed and signed by the patient. Once the form has been completed, coordination of care with other healthcare professionals or relatives can be initiated as needed. The exceptions to the confidentiality law are suspected child or elder abuse, harm to self or others, and when patient records are being subpoenaed as evidence during legal proceedings.
Disclosure of confidential material may be requested by patient’s insurance company in order to process a claim. In this circumstance, only the minimum amount of patient information will be provided. Additionally, if there is a breach or refusal to pay an outstanding balance, patient information may be provided to a collection agency or small claims court. In regards to any of the above exceptions, an attempt will be made from psychologist’s part to limit disclosure to only necessary information and also to discuss with patient before taking any action.