In my professional practice, confidentiality is considered a corner stone to help promote openness, trust and safety in for your successful psychotherapy.  Confidentiality between the psychologist and client is essential for promoting personal growth and positive gains in treatment.  Psychologists have ethical and legal obligations which ensure privacy and confidentiality unless there is signed written permission from the client designating to share specific information with clearly designated parties. Limited exceptions to this regulation includes:  information that a client intends and has the capability to harm a clearly identified individual, there is suspicion of sexual or physical abuse to a minor or elder, or there is a court order to share identifiable confidential information.

If you decide to use health insurance for your psychotherapy, your insurance company will have access to information regarding your treatment.  This will include a diagnosis, dates and numbers of sessions, and according to your plan, permission attain a copy of session notes or summary information from treatment.  According to some Employee Assistant Programs (EAP’s), employers will be able to receive selected information regarding your psychotherapy.  People may choose not to utilize their health insurance plans for psychotherapy and therefore keep their mental health treatment a matter of personal record only.