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Confidentiality is a vital skill that requires constant attention. It is important to recognize that all client, fellow student and staff information should always be treated as confidential information. Key areas of confidentiality are as follows:

Never gossip. It is a widespread illness in our tabloid society. It is inappropriate on many levels and even though it may gain you some short term positive status with the person you are gossiping to, in the long run you will become known as a person that is not respectful or caring of other people. This will severely damage your reputation and professional success.

Outside inquiries for information, phone numbers, information about people that work at the school, or information on students, clients or staff should be directed to the school director or other authorized staff.

All client and school records must be handled with extreme care to ensure that they cannot be seen by anyone other than school officials or students in clinic, are properly located in secure files and are never left out in any public area at the school. All records must stay at the school and can only be moved or transported with the prior approval of the director of the school.

All client information from the student clinic is strictly confidential. It is not appropriate to share information from conversations or client files with any other client or student. Information on clients should only be shared with faculty and management of the school to ensure that there are no boundaries that are crossed.

All information as it applies to fellow students should be treated as strictly confidential. Information should not be shared with other students, clients, or people outside of school. The only appropriate channel for information is to the staff of the school.

If a person calls wanting to know if a student is in school or a client is at the school, say that you are sorry but the schools confidentiality rules prohibit you from giving out that information. This policy is to protect students from any potential stalker activity. Since it is impossible to know the situations of all students and clients, it is always better to err on the side of caution and not give out that information.

If a person requests the phone number of anyone at the school, tell them that you school policy does not allow you to give out numbers. Then ask if they would like to leave their number which you will forward to the person they are interested in contacting. This allows the student, client or staff member to manage the distribution of their personal information.

If a person calls to enquire about how a student, client or staff member is doing or if they are around, NEVER give out this information. Again, this information should only be given out by the person in question.

By following these guidelines you will develop great skills at maintaining confidentiality that will increase your professional standing in the community.

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