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Terms and Policy

Consent Form
Anyone requesting counselling services with Kate Borsato has the right to Informed Consent; that is, your full and active participation in decisions which affect you and your freedom of choice based on the information shared. You have the right to accept or reject any task, exercise, or procedure suggested by your counsellor, and to be informed of the risks, benefits, rationale for, alternatives to, and interpretations of any and all counselling interventions. Throughout our counselling relationship, you maintain the right to withdraw consent and participation at anytime, without question or explanation.

Participation in online counselling can result in a number of benefits to you, including better relationships, solutions to specific problems and significant reduction in feelings of distress; but there are no guarantees for reaching intended outcomes. Online counselling offers additional flexibility in scheduling, accessibility, and asynchronous communication that can facilitate positive changes and personal growth.

There are times when remembering or talking about unpleasant events, feelings, or thoughts can result in you experiencing discomfort or strong emotions like anger, sadness, worry, and fear. By exploring personal challenges or difficult events, it is possible to develop experiences of anxiety, depression, insomnia, or other difficulties. It is normal to notice temporary increase in distress when beginning counselling because the process of working on personal issues is challenging: please be aware of this. Attempting to resolve issues that brought you into therapy in the first place may result in changes that were not originally intended. For example, a decision that is positive for you may be viewed negatively by another person.

Sessions notes are regularly created throughout your participation in counselling. These notes are created and stored in an encrypted and secured electronic database which is only accessible by the counsellor. All email and other text based exchanges will also be stored on this secure database. I recommend that you ONLY send personal information over the secure mail service that you can access when you login to the Secure Client Area: personal email (like Hotmail or Gmail) is not secure. I will not respond to personal and clinical concerns via regular email.

Any information you provide is considered to be confidential and will not be released to any other party under normal circumstances. However, there are 3 situations where professional counsellors are legally required to release personal information to protective or emergency authorities:
1. If you indicate that you are at clear and immediate risk to harm yourself or others
2. If a child or a vulnerable adult is in need of protection (by law, a minor is anyone under to the age of 19)
3. If I am subpoenaed to testify in court (while this is rare, it is important that you are aware of this possibility).

It is important that you determine who has access to your computer and electronic information from your location. This would include family members, co-workers, supervisors and friends. I encourage you to only communicate through a computer that you know is safe, i.e. wherein confidentiality can be ensured. Be sure to fully exit all online counselling sessions and emails.

It is important for you to know that obtaining supervision is an important part of my professional development and something that I am committed to throughout my career. Seeking support and guidance from other counsellors is a responsible and ethical way to ensure that I can provide the best support possible to my clients. There may be times when I discuss your situation with a supervisor (an experienced counsellor) in order to gain important feedback. It is my commitment, and legal responsibility, to omit all identifying information so that I can honor my assurance of confidentiality and make sure your identity is protected.

Online counselling is technical in nature and there may be problems with Internet connectivity at times. Internet availability may be limited or disrupted by things such as server maintenance, upgrades, or other problems (such as software or hardware malfunction) or natural or man-made disasters. There may be problems that are beyond our control (yours or mine), and in this case, we can discuss rescheduling appointments at no additional cost. I will always be available by phone should any issues arise with video calls. 

Situations may arise where you may need to cancel or reschedule your appointment. For phone and video sessions, please cancel your appointment at least 24 hours before it is scheduled to begin in order to avoid being charged the full amount for the session. If there are extenuating circumstances that prevented you from doing so, please inform me right away.

I understand that I must be at least 18 years of age to consent for counselling by Kate Borsato.

I understand that online counselling is not appropriate if I am experiencing a crisis or have suicidal or homicidal thoughts. If a life-threatening crisis should occur, I agree to contact a crisis hotline, call 911, or go to a hospital emergency room.

I understand that my counsellor (Kate Borsato) follows the laws and professional regulations of the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association (CCPA) and that counselling will be considered to take place in Canada (British Columbia).
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