Notice of Privacy Practices

This is the privacy notice of Lala Balajadia-Alcala, Psychological Services. This notice describes how information about you may be used and disclosed and how you can access this information. So kindly review it carefully.

This notice tells you my policies about all information that I record about you. It describes how I use the information in my office, how I share it with other health care professionals or organizations, and how you can see it. This is important so you can make the best decisions for yourself and for your family.

Regrettably, if there are one or more points in this document that you disagree with or are not happy with and do not consent to, your only recourse is to leave my website immediately.

The Kinds of Information I collect

  1. Anytime you visit a health care provider like me, information is collected about you, your mental health, and your physical health. The information could be about your past, present, or future health conditions, or the tests and treatments that you got from me or other providers in the past. All of this information is called protected health information (PHI) and that means that its privacy must be protected. This information I collect goes into my office records.

  2. In my practice, your PHI is likely to include these kinds of information:

  • Your full history: childhood, school and work history, relationships, and other personal history

  • Any medical history of problems or treatments you got

  • Why you came for treatment such as your complaints, problems, experienced symptoms

  • Diagnoses – medical terms used for your problems or symptoms

  • Treatment Plan – this includes services and treatments that I think will best help you

  • Therapy progress notes – whenever we see each other, I make notes of things such as what we did or said, how you are progressing, and our plans or agreements for succeeding sessions.

  • Records I get from others who treated or evaluated you

  • Psychological reports, School records or other reports

  • Medicines you took or are taking

  • Billing information

  • Legal issues you may have

The Reasons why I collect PHI

I use your PHI for many purposes:

  • To plan for your care and interventions

  • To gauge how well the interventions are working for you

  • For continuity of care, for instance, if I talk to other health professionals who you saw or are seeing. Rest assured that when I do this, I will ask for your consent first. More often than not, I will also ask you to sign a Release of Information (ROI) form that will explain what information I will share and why.

  • For teaching and training other health care professionals or for psychological research. However, if ever I do this, your name or any identifying information about you will never be shown. Prior to doing this though, I will still seek your consent and ask you to sign an authorization letter letting you know how your information will be used and why, while still protecting your identity and those of people around you.

  • To indicate that you actually received service/s from me by way of billing or receipts.

  • To improve my work and your outcomes by measuring how the interventions have impacted you through use of rating sheets and measuring tools.

Privacy and applicable law

  1. I take seriously the protection of your privacy and confidentiality. All visitors to my website are entitled to know that their personal data will not be used for any purpose unintended by them and will not accidentally fall into the hands of a third party.

  2. I undertake to preserve the confidentiality of all information you provide to me, and hope that you reciprocate.

  3. My policy complies with Republic Act 10173 also known as the Data Privacy Act of 2012 and is also consistent with Republic Act 11036 otherwise known as The Mental Health Act. This form is not legal advice. It just lets you know about your rights and my procedures.

  4. The law requires me to tell you about your rights and my obligations to you in regards to the processing and control of your personal data.

  5. I do not share, or sell, or disclose to a third party, any information collected through my website.

The bases on which I process information about you

  1.  “Processing” as defined by RA 10173 refers to “any operation or any set of operations performed upon personal information including, but not limited to, the collection, recording, organization, storage, updating or modification, retrieval, consultation, use, consolidation, blocking, erasure or destruction of data” (https://www.privacy.gov.ph/data-privacy-act/#3)

  2. If a basis on which I process your personal information is no longer relevant, then I shall immediately stop processing your data.

 

​Information I process with your consent

When you browse my website or ask me to provide you more information about my business, including my services, you provide consent to me to process information that may be personal information.

Wherever possible, I aim to obtain your explicit consent to process this information, for example, by asking you to agree to my use of cookies.

Sometimes you might give your consent implicitly, such as when you send me a message by e-mail to which you would reasonably expect me to reply.

Except where you have consented to my use of your information for a specific purpose as stated above, I do not use your information in any way that would identify you personally.

I need information about you and your condition to provide the most appropriate care for you. To agree, you will need to sign a separate consent form before I begin to treat you. If you do not consent to this, I will not be able to treat you.

Referrals

If I want to share PHI with others outside my office, I will need your permission via a signed Release of Information form. For instance, this may happen if I need to refer you to another professional to provide a treatment I cannot provide. To do this, I may need to tell them details about you and your conditions. The ROI lets you know what kind of information I will be sharing and to whom.

Payment

I may also use your information to bill you or, if you are under any insurance, to provide the information to them, so I can be paid for the treatments I give you. If you are under any insurance or coverage plan that pays for your treatments, I may need to inform them of your progress, your condition and the plan for treatment. If you are paying via PayPal or other online means, no payment details are kept on my website or servers.

Appointment reminders

I use an online scheduler to remind you of your appointments or reschedule your appointment. If you want me to call or you want another way of being reached, I can usually arrange that, just let me know.

Information I process because of a contractual obligation with you

When you buy a product or service from me, or otherwise agree to my terms and conditions, a contract is formed between you and me.

In order to carry out my obligations under that contract I must process the information you give me. Some of this information may be personal information.

I may use it in order to:

  • verify your identity for security purposes

  • provide you with my services

  • provide you with suggestions and advice on services and how to obtain the most from using my website​

 

Information I process because I have a legal obligation

Just like everyone else, I am subject to the law. Sometimes, I must process your information in order to comply with a statutory obligation. This may include your personal information.

For example, I may be required to give information to legal authorities if they so request or if they have the proper authorization such as a search warrant or court order. There may be disclosures that do not require your consent or authorization such as:

  • For law enforcement purposes

  • For public health activities

  • For matters relating to deceased persons

  • To prevent a serious threat to health or safety

Your rights about your personal information

  1. You need to know that your PHI has been or will continue to be collected and processed in our work together. You can ask me to limit what I can say to other people involved in your care or with payment for your care like family members or friends. I may ask you to make the request in writing. I do not have to agree with your request but if I do, I will honor it only if it is not against the law, or in cases of emergency, or if the information is necessary to treat you.

  2. You have a right to gain reasonable access to any personal data I have about you. I may charge you a reasonable cost-based fee for producing copies of your data. I will be happy to review records with you or provide a summary to you or work out another method that satisfies you. However, if I have strong evidence that revealing information would cause harm to you or put the safety of others at risk, you may not be able to see all the information.

  3. You have the right to add, amend, object to, explain, or correct anything in your records. If you believe that the information is incorrect or missing something important, you can ask me to make the revisions or to include your own written statements to correct the situations.

  4. If you have a problem with how I handled your PHI or if you believe I violated your privacy rights, please let me know and I will do my best to resolve any problems.

You may have other rights granted to you by our country which may be similar or different from the rights mentioned above. I will be glad to discuss these situations with you as they come up.

Other matters

  1. Use of site by children. If you are under 18, you may use my website and my service only with consent and supervision from a parent or guardian

  2. Retention for personal data. I keep information for as long as I need to be able to provide you with the services you requested and to comply with other law including the time period needed by tax authorities.

Effectivity of this statement

My privacy statement is effective as of March 2020. As time passes, privacy expectations may also change. As such, consider this document as subject to update from time to time as necessary, to reflect any changes in the way I may handle your information or if there are any changes in applicable laws. Nonetheless, for old visitors and new visitors to this site, your  continued use of my site after any modification of my policies will comprise your acceptance of such modification.

If you have any questions regarding my privacy policy, please contact me at lala@lalabalajadiaalcala.com