Why Maintaining a Client's Privacy Is Crucial

Why Maintaining a Client's Privacy Is Crucial

Everyone deserves to have their personal information kept private and confidential. Only authorized individuals should have access to sensitive client information. Staff members are legally and morally obligated to keep private records safe and secure. Rehabilitation programs must comply with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). According to HHS, the HIPAA Privacy Rule creates "appropriate safeguards to protect the privacy of protected health information and sets limits and conditions on the uses and disclosures that may be made of such information without an individual's authorization." The dedicated professionals at Driftwood Recovery follow HIPAA guidelines to protect each client's privacy.

How Does a Client's Privacy Impact Recovery?

Clients expect their medical and personal information to remain secure. Conversations and records shared with staff members, peers, and outside consultants are considered confidential. Most people expect a strict level of privacy. Studies have shown that "[a]ny program that specializes, in whole or in part, in providing treatment, counseling, and/or assessment and referral services for clients with substance abuse disorders must comply with the Federal confidentiality regulations."

Client privacy impacts the relationship between staff members and individuals in recovery by doing the following:

  • Increasing trust
  • Improving communication
  • Reducing stigmas and internalized stigmas

Clinicians are trained to keep client information secure and private at all times unless the client authorizes their care team to share information with others. For example, if a client would benefit from meeting with a medical professional outside the treatment program, the client may provide the care team with permission to share information about their health with the outside party.

Keeping Client Details Confidential From Loved Ones and Coworkers

Healthcare workers are familiar with keeping client details confidential on and off the clock. Individuals in treatment rely on their care team to treat them with respect and dignity even when they are not in the room. Driftwood Recovery expects clinicians and support staff to avoid sharing private client information, even among coworkers who are not authorized to know the client's information and loved ones.

People in treatment heal more quickly and often feel less stress if they trust their care team to never disclose private information in public spaces or with unauthorized individuals. Staff members might be tempted to tell loved ones in confidence if they work with a celebrity or encounter an unusual situation. However, Driftwood Recovery does not condone sharing any private client information. The only times clinicians can legally share client medical information without their consent include during medical emergencies, instances of child abuse, and if the client is a danger to themselves or others.

Why Is It Important to Protect Every Client's Privacy?

Many people diagnosed with substance use disorder (SUD) have experienced some form of interpersonal trauma. Clients may struggle with trust issues and have difficulty relying on the integrity of their care team. Celebrities and individuals who have public lives may feel even more uncertain about trusting their most vulnerable thoughts and feelings with people they have not met before.

According to Addiction Science and Clinical Practice, "[I]n a recent national survey, adults have expressed some concerns about the potential for shared health information . . . 42% of participants indicated that they would feel uncomfortable if their private health information was shared with other organizations, even if any identifying information was excluded." Building client trust is essential. Driftwood Recovery helps individuals overcome insecurities and distrust by building a solid foundation of honest communication and understanding between clients and clinicians.

Every Client Deserves to Be Treated With Respect and Dignity

Clients deserve to be treated with dignity and given the necessary tools to direct their recovery. Some people feel more confident about their privacy and ability to manage their condition if they play a more active role in treatment planning. Staff approach the collaboration process with curiosity and nonjudgmental support. Clients are treated with respect and provided information to ensure they make educated decisions about their health and treatment. Every person participating in treatment deserves the dignity of choosing who has access to their private medical information.

How Does Driftwood Recovery Protect Each Client's Privacy?

Every morning, the staff meets to review treatment topics, facility policies, and other important subjects. Client privacy is essential to the success of each department. During daily meetings, the care team supports and uplifts one another, ensuring everyone remains on the same page and ready to face the day together. Teamwork and consistency in client care increase data security. Daily meetings are also a reminder to remain professional and HIPPA-compliant.

Recognizing When to Deviate From Normal Therapeutic Routines

Some clients require flexibility to make progress in their treatment. Clients rely on their care team to use the information they provide to create a more effective treatment plan. Knowing when to make appropriate deviations from typical treatment curriculum and program schedules allows clients and staff to form a deeper level of trust.

Clients must provide private information about their health and emotional well-being. However, many people avoid the treatment they need out of fear due to having their trust broken by others in the past. Staff at Driftwood Recovery understand the importance of maintaining confidentiality and protecting client privacy. Clients from all walks of life participate in treatment programs at Driftwood Recovery. People in treatment deserve to feel respected, heard, and safe to share their concerns. Every staff member practices values of honesty, integrity, and transparency. Client information is kept secure and private unless the care team receives permission to share it. To learn more about our programs and services, call us at (512) 759-8330.