Is there a way to share ongoing information with a parent who is not the consumer's guardian without having to get updated releases?
There are a couple ways we can share information with a consumer's parent. Best practice is to work with the consumer directly as much as possible to assist them in advocating for themselves, having them be responsible for their case, and having them share information and updates with their parents.
We can obtain releases of information that allow us to share information with a parent. However, a release does not allow for ongoing sharing of information. We are not able to share information that is generated after the date the release is signed by the consumer. We would need an updated release to share information generated after the date the previous one was signed.
There are a couple other ways we can share appropriate information with a parent. A consumer could have the parent attend a meeting with them allowing them to receive information shared at the meeting. The counselor should ask the consumer if there is anything they would not like discussed with the parent present to ensure we only share what the consumer would like shared. We should case note this discussion in the case record.
If a counselor receives a call from a parent asking for information about the case, a counselor could ask the parent to put the consumer on the phone and we could obtain verbal approval from the consumer to share the specific information being requested at that point in time. We should case note this conversation in the case record.
As a reminder, we should be as helpful as possible and provide good customer service. If we do not have a release to speak to a parent, we can always listen to what a parent wants to share, and in return we can share general information on DVR policy and practice, not specific information about the consumer.