Returning to ‘in person’ counselling – Covid-19

From 12th April 2021, I will be offering to see clients ‘in person’ in my counselling room. However, it will be entirely up to individual clients if and when they want to return. I will continue to offer online and telephone counselling as an option for as long as needed.

As counselling is a ‘talking therapy’, I will not be wearing a face mask/covering and would prefer you not to either. Of course, you can wear a mask on your way to and from the appointment. I think it would interfere too much with the quality of our communication for face masks/coverings to be worn during the session. If you feel at all uncomfortable with this, it may be better for us to continue with appointments online or on the phone for the time being.

Until the Government advise otherwise, I will continue to use the following protocols intended to keep everyone as safe as possible. These include:

  • If you are feeling unwell, particularly if you have any of the Covid-19 symptoms, please do not come to your appointment. You can cancel at any time before the session, and there will be no cancellation fee. If you feel well enough, we can arrange to have the session online or by phone instead. 
  • I had my first Covid vaccination in March and the second one is due in May so hopefully this will protect you as well as me. However, I will cancel appointments if I feel unwell or develop any of the Covid-19 symptoms.  I will always try to give as much notice as possible, but would rather cancel at short notice than risk passing on any infection. Again, if I feel well enough, I will offer an online or telephone appointment as an alternative, although there will be no obligation on your part to accept this.
  • Should I test positive for Covid-19 at any point, I may be required to pass on contact information for anyone I have come into contact with for Test and Trace purposes. If I need to pass on your details, please know that I will never pass on any information about the nature of our relationship or contact.
  • As usual, the back gate will be kept shut so, please close the gate behind you on entry and departure. I will wipe the gate latch with antibacterial wipes before an appointment.
  • I will open and close the door to the counselling room so that you don’t need to touch the door handle. I will stand back as you enter and leave to ensure we keep at least one-metre distance.
  • Cushions will be placed on the carpet between the client chairs rather than on the chairs. Please feel free to use them as needed but then leave them on the chair when you go. I will remove and wash the cushion cover before it is used by another client.  
  • (Homemade) hand sanitiser will be available in the counselling room but feel free to use your own if preferred. I will clean the chairs with antibacterial wipes between appointments.
  • I will have small packs of tissues available on the small table. Please feel free to take a pack if needed.  
  • Clients who need to use my loo before or after the session may do so. I will let you in via the front door as the loo is off the hallway. Toilet wipes will be available as well as a paper towel to dry your hands. Please dispose of these in the bin provided.
  • All existing clients are now paying by bank transfer, and I would prefer this to continue wherever possible.

I have tried to cover as many things as I can think of here, but if you have any questions or concerns, please talk to me.

Sandra Coulthard

5th April 2021