Your Patient Privacy is Legally Protected
All information gathered during the course of counseling can be released only with the student's written consent within the limits of the law.
Counseling is confidential
All information you share with us, whether it is information in our records about you, or even the fact that you have come to see us, cannot be shared with others outside the Counseling Center. In some circumstances your counselor may consult with other counselors at the Counseling Center or with providers in the Health Center for treatment purposes and in order to provide you with the best help available.
No one outside the Center may access your Counseling Center records without your prior written permission or as required by law. The law in the State of California mandates that information may be appropriately shared when the following conditions exist:
- 1. If you present an imminent threat of harm to yourself or others.
- 2. When there is an indication of abuse of a child, dependent adult or elderly adult.
- 3. If you become gravely disabled.
- 4. If information is required by a court subpoena or court order.
If you are referred for counseling as a condition of an agreement, for example with the Dean of Students or within your academic department, and want information communicated to them, including your attendance at the Counseling Center, you will have to sign an Authorization for Release of Information Form to have any information provided to the person who referred you.
Health Insurance Portability and
Accountability Act (HIPAA)
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) is a federal law designed to protect the privacy of patient information, provide for electronic and physical security of health and patient medical information, and simplify billing and other electronic transactions by standardizing codes and procedures.
One part of this law is known as the HIPAA Privacy Rule. The HIPAA Privacy Rule created a minimum federal standard for the use and disclosure of Protected Health Information (PHI) by health care organizations. One of the requirements of the Privacy Rule is to give you a Notice of Privacy Practices (NPP) which describes your rights and protections regarding your health care records. You will be asked to sign an Acknowledgement of receipt of the Notice of Privacy Practices.
Frequently Asked Questions