As part of my duty to my care, I am legally and professionally obliged to protect your safety if I am concerned you may be at risk of hurting yourself, or someone else. I will always encourage you to take action yourself first, but if I am concerned you are not able to keep yourself safe, or keep someone you care for safe, I may need to act urgently to get help without your consent.
For those clients with whom I am working online, maybe in different countries, further challenges are presented:
I therefore ask that if a situation occurs where we are talking and get disconnected and you are in crisis, you agree to call your local 3-digit emergency number (UK 999, Europe 112), contact your doctor, go to your local emergency room immediately or contact a local suicide hotline. In the UK you can also call the Samaritans on 116 123.
If I have concerns about your imminent safety, or that of someone close to you, at any time during or after a phone/video call session, I will need to break confidentiality and will attempt to speak to your emergency contact, and/or family doctor immediately.
If I am unable to get through to your emergency contact or doctor, I will call your local emergency services on your behalf. If you reside in the UK, I will call 999. However, if you reside in a different country it is not possible for me to call your local 3-digit emergency services from abroad. I therefore request the number of your local police department as they will be able to access the relevant emergency services for me.