Privacy Policy of Peace and Joy Counseling Services, LLC

Effective Date: August 2023

At Peace and Joy Counseling Services, LLC (“Peace and Joy,” “we,” “our,” or “us”), we are dedicated to maintaining the privacy and security of your personal information. This Privacy Policy outlines how we collect, use, disclose, and protect your data when interacting with our website and utilizing our mental health counseling and virtual therapy services. You consent to the practices described in this policy by accessing or using our services.

1. Information Collection and Use:

  • Personal Information:
    When you engage with Peace and Joy Counseling Services, we may collect personally identifiable information (PII) from you. This information may include your name, contact details, email address, phone number, demographic information, medical history, insurance details, and payment information. We use this information to provide quality counseling services, process payments, communicate with you, and comply with legal requirements.

  • Non-Personal Information:
    In addition to PII, we may collect non-personally identifiable information (non-PII) automatically through the use of cookies and similar technologies. This non-PII may include your IP address, browser type, device information, operating system, and website usage data. We use this data to improve our website, tailor content to user preferences, and enhance overall user experience.

2. Data Security:

  • Confidentiality Measures:
    We understand the importance of data security and have implemented appropriate physical, technical, and administrative measures to safeguard your information. Access to your PII is limited to authorized personnel who require it to provide services to you. We regularly assess and update our security practices to protect against unauthorized access, disclosure, alteration, or destruction of your data.
  • Third-Party Service Providers:
    To support our operations, we may use reputable third-party service providers. These vendors have access to certain PII but are contractually bound to use it solely for the purposes we outline and are prohibited from sharing or using the information for any other reason.

 

3. Use of Cookies and Tracking Technologies:

  • Cookies:
    Our website may use cookies and similar technologies to collect non-PII and improve user experience. Cookies are small text files that are stored on your device when you visit a website. They help us analyze website traffic, track user interactions, and remember user preferences. You can control the use of cookies through your browser settings, but please note that disabling cookies may impact certain features of our website.

 

  • Analytics:
    We may employ third-party analytics tools, like Google Analytics, to gather and analyze non-PII about website traffic and usage patterns. These tools help us optimize our website and enhance user experience.

4. Third-Party Services:

  • Links to Third-Party Websites:
    Our website may contain links to external websites operated by third parties. Please be aware that we have no control over the content and practices of these websites. We encourage you to review the privacy policies of any third-party sites you visit through our website to understand their data collection and usage practices.
  • Virtual/Online Therapy Platforms:
    Peace and Joy Counseling Services may use virtual therapy platforms for online counseling sessions. While we prioritize the security of these platforms, we advise clients to ensure they are using a secure internet connection during virtual sessions to protect the confidentiality of their sessions.

5. Use of Your Information:

  • Service Provision:
    We use your PII to provide mental health counseling, virtual therapy, and related services. This includes scheduling appointments, conducting sessions, processing payments, and facilitating communication.
  • Communication:
    We may use your contact information to send you appointment reminders, important updates, and marketing communications related to our services. You can opt-out of marketing communications at any time by following the unsubscribe instructions in the emails.
  • Legal Obligations:
    We may use and disclose your information when required by law, such as in response to a court order, legal process, or government request. We may also share your information to protect our rights, privacy, safety, or property, and that of our clients and the public.

6. Confidentiality and Disclosure:

  • Professional and Ethical Standards:
    At Peace and Joy Counseling Services, we adhere to professional and ethical standards, including confidentiality requirements. As mental health professionals, we are committed to maintaining the confidentiality of your personal information, communications, and counseling sessions.
  • Limits of Confidentiality:
    While we strive to keep your information confidential, there are certain situations where we may be legally required to disclose certain information. Such situations include suspected child abuse, imminent harm to self or others, or when compelled by a court order.
  • Client Authorization:
    Except as required by law or in specific situations mentioned in this policy, we will not disclose your PII to third parties without your express consent.

7. Client Rights:

  • Access and Update:
    As a client of Peace and Joy Counseling Services, you have the right to access, review, update, and correct your personal information held by us. If you wish to exercise any of these rights, please contact us using the information provided at the end of this policy.
  • Retention Period:
    We retain your personal information for as long as necessary to fulfill the purposes outlined in this policy, unless a longer retention period is required or permitted by law.

8. Compliance with Laws:

  • Virginia Compact Law:
    As a mental health service provider in Virginia, we are committed to complying with the Virginia compact law, which allows licensed professionals to provide telehealth services across state lines in certain circumstances.
  • Federal Regulations:
    In addition to state laws, we comply with all applicable federal regulations related to data protection and privacy, including the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) where applicable.

9. Minors:

  • Age Restriction:
    Our services are not intended for individuals under the age of 18. If you are a parent or guardian and believe that your child has provided us with their PII, please contact us, and we will take appropriate steps to remove such information from our records.

10. Changes to Privacy Policy:

  • Policy Updates:
    We may update this Privacy Policy periodically to reflect changes in our practices or legal requirements. The latest revision date will be displayed at the beginning of the policy. Please review this policy periodically to stay informed about how we collect, use, and protect your information.

11. Contact Information

If you have any questions, concerns, or requests regarding this Privacy Policy or our data practices, please feel free to contact us:

Peace and Joy Counseling Services, LLC
Email:  wanda@pj-counseling.com
Phone: 757-774-8649