Response for Documentation and Record Requests
Current and former clients may request documentation of services received at the ETSU Counseling Center. However, if you have never been a client here, or have only been a client for a short time (less than five sessions), we are not the best source of support for your request and will not be able to provide you a letter. Although counselors want to be supportive when they can, it is important for faculty, staff and students to understand that counselors cannot help confirm difficulties of which they have no prior information or only very little knowledge. Further, we cannot verify difficulties experienced prior to first contact with our Center.
Due to the scope of services offered at the ETSU Counseling Center, we are unable to provide documentation for the following:
· Hormone Replacement Therapy
· Gender Affirmation Surgery
· Emotional Support Animals
· Financial Aid and other University-based appeals
· Fitness for Duty or other employment-based requests
· Mandated treatment / Court-ordered care
· Medical withdrawals from the University
While this is our general policy, we understand that there may be exceptions to the above restrictions and may consider requests on a case-by-case basis. All requests must undergo a formal evaluation process with the Counseling Center staff and must be endorsed by the client’s counselor. Documentation requests will not be considered for students who have attended less than five sessions at the Counseling Center. Typically, any documentation provided by the Counseling Center will be limited to objective information only and will not be considered a “letter of support”.
VISIT VERIFICATION FORMS
A visit verification form is an official documentation that you received services on a particular date. This could be helpful to share with a professor who desires proof of services, especially for students who may have missed a class/exam to attend an emergency appointment. All clients are welcome to request a visit verification summary from the Counseling Center. Please note that these summaries do not include session content and do not come in a letter format.
You may wish to share records regarding your treatment with another professional. To request records please call us at 423-439-3333. Please note that we do not hold records past 10 years.
Client files are the property of the Counseling Center, not the client. Records will only be released to mental health or healthcare professionals who require this information for coordination of care. When we receive a request for records, the client’s file will be reviewed by one of our administrators, and a care summary will be completed (e.g., number and dates of sessions attended, engagement level, treatment progress). Client files that contain psychiatry notes will have these notes submitted alongside the care summary, as they have information pertinent to medication management.
The Counseling Center offers brief, solution-focused care, and as a result, our counselors do not endorse formal diagnoses in client files. Counseling Center staff and interns complete psychotherapy notes for each session that include the counselor’s professional observations and judgments regarding the session content. In line with laws and regulations regarding protected health information, these notes are not considered a part of a client’s medical record, and clients are not entitled to review of these notes. (See below.)
If clients are interested in learning more about their records at the Counseling Center, they are welcome to schedule a consultation with one of our administrators.
Allow up to 10 business days for the processing of documentation requests.
All documentation requests are staffed on Fridays and considered for approval by the Counseling Center team. All requests are subject to the discretion of the Counseling Center.