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Office of the Solicitor

Privacy Act Systems - DOL/OASAM-5

DOL/OASAM-5

SYSTEM NAME:

Employee Assistance Program (EAP) Records.

SECURITY CLASSIFICATION:

None.

SYSTEM LOCATION:

The Employee Assistance Program (EAP), headquartered in the Human Resources Center, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Administration and Management (OASAM), U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), 200 Constitution Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20210, and offices of designated EAP service providers located elsewhere in the Washington metropolitan area and Department's regions.

Note: DOL may elect to use, under an interagency agreement or other contractual arrangement, the counseling staff of another Federal, state, or local government, or private or community organization. This system does not cover EAP records of DOL employees (current or former) or their family members that are maintained by other Federal agencies.

CATEGORIES OF INDIVIDUALS COVERED BY THE SYSTEM:

DOL employees or their family members, who have been assessed, referred for treatment/rehabilitation or otherwise counseled regarding alcohol or drug abuse or other emotional health issues by an EAP counselor responsible for providing services to DOL employees or their family members.

CATEGORIES OF RECORDS IN THE SYSTEM:

Records in this system include documentation of visits to counselors designated by the agency to provide EAP services (regardless of whether the counselors are employed by the Federal, state, or local government, or by a private sector or community organization); problem assessments; counseling; recommendations and/or referrals for treatment and/or rehabilitation; client cooperation with those recommendation and/or referrals; progress; and other notes or records of discussions held with the client made by the counselor. Additionally, records in this system may include documentation of the therapeutic or rehabilitative work performed by a private therapist or a therapist at a Federal, State, local government, or private organization. If the client was referred to the EAP by a supervisor due to work performance or conduct problems, the record may also contain information regarding such matters. When the client was referred to the EAP because of a positive drug test, required by DOL's drug-free workplace plan, the record will also contain information about substance abuse assessment, treatment, aftercare, and substance use monitoring results.

AUTHORITY FOR MAINTENANCE OF THE SYSTEM:

5 U.S.C. 7361, 7362, 7901, 7904; 44 U.S.C. 3101.

PURPOSE(S):

These records are used to document the nature and extent of the client's problem; the short-term problem solving / counseling, recommendations and/or referrals for treatment and/or rehabilitation made by the EAP; and the extent of the client s participation in, and the results of treatment or rehabilitation in community or private sector programs; and any follow-up necessary.

ROUTINE USES OF RECORDS MAINTAINED IN THE SYSTEM, INCLUDING CATEGORIES OF USERS AND THE PURPOSES OF SUCH USES:

a. DOL may elect to enter into interagency agreements or other contractual arrangements with other Federal agencies, private organizations or individuals for the purpose of providing EAP services for DOL employees and their family members. Relevant client records will be disclosed to these providers.

b. Except where the records are covered by the Confidentiality of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Patient Records regulation, 42 CFR Part 2, records and information in these records may be:

i. Disclosed to the Department of Justice when: (A) DOL or any component thereof; or (B) any employee of the agency in his or her official capacity; or (C) the United States Government, is a party to litigation or has an interest in such litigation, and by careful review, the agency determines that the records are both relevant and necessary to the litigation, and the use of such records by the Department of Justice is for a purpose that is compatible with the purpose for which the agency collected the records.

ii. Disclosed in a proceeding before a court or adjudicative body, when: (A) DOL or any component thereof; or (B) any employee of the agency in his or her official capacity; or (C) any employee of the agency in his or her individual capacity; or (D) the United States Government, is a party to litigation or has an interest in such litigation, and by careful review, the agency determines that the records are both relevant and necessary to the litigation, and that the use of such records is a purpose that is compatible with the purpose for which the agency collected the records.

c. Where the records are covered by the Confidentiality of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Patient Records regulation, 42 CFR Part 2, records and information in these records may be used:

i. To disclose, in accordance with 42 CFR 2.51(a), patient identifying information to medical personnel who have a need for the information about a patient for the purpose of treating a condition which poses an immediate threat to health of any person and which requires immediate medical intervention.

ii. To disclose patient identifying information to medical personnel of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) who assert a reason to believe that the health of any individual may be threatened by an error in the manufacture, labeling, or sale of a product under FDA jurisdiction, and that the information will be used for the exclusive purpose of notifying patients or their physicians of potential dangers. (See 42 CFR 2.51(b)).

iii. To disclose patient information when authorized by an order of a court of competent jurisdiction in accordance with 42 CFR 2.61;

iv. To disclose information to a Federal, State or local law enforcement authority that is directly related to a patient's commission of a crime committed on the premises of the program or against any program personnel or to a threat to commit such a crime. (See 42 CFR 2.12(a)(5));

v. To disclose information to State or local law enforcement authorities on incidents of suspected child abuse or neglect. (See 42 CFR 2.12(c)(6);

vi. To disclose the fact of a minor's application for treatment to the minor's parent or guardian where State law requires parental consent. (See 42 CFR 2.14(c));

vii. To disclose to a minor's parent or guardian, facts relevant to reducing a threat to the life or physical wellbeing of any individual, if the minor lacks capacity for rational choice (See 42 CFR 2.14(d);NOTE: I've never seen these items in a SORN;

viii. To disclose to a Qualified Service Organization (QSO), in accordance with 42 CFR 2.12(c)(4), that information needed by the QSO to provide services to the program;

ix. To disclose patient identifying information for the purpose of conducting scientific research under the circumstances set forth in 42 CFR 2.52;

x. To disclose patient identifying information for audit and evaluation purposes under the circumstance set forth in 42 CFR 2.53.

DISCLOSURE TO CONSUMER REPORTING AGENCIES:

None.

POLICIES AND PRACTICES FOR STORING, RETRIEVING, ACCESSING, AND RETAINING AND DISPOSING OF RECORDS IN THE SYSTEM:

STORAGE:

Files are stored electronically and/or on paper.

RETRIEVABILITY:

Records are retrieved by a case code number, unique to the client utilizing the program. These numbers are cross-indexed by name.

SAFEGUARDS:

a. Authorized Users: Access to these records is limited to EAP Administrators who work directly with clients of the program and their immediate staffs (including counselors, secretaries, and contract or consortia administrators, counselors or secretaries). OASAM EAP Administrators as well as EAP Administrators and Coordinators from other Federal agencies who contract with OASAM, whether or not they directly provide clinical services, may have access to the records for the purposes of program evaluation, destroying records at the end of the period of maintenance, and transferring records from one EAP contractor to another. OASAM may also contract with either a private organization or other Federal agency to destroy these records. The personnel of these record destruction organizations or agencies may have access to the records at the end of their period of maintenance for the purpose of transferring records from the EAP location to a destruction site and subsequently destroying the records.

b. Physical Safeguards: All paper records are stored in metal filing cabinets equipped with at least combination locks and preferably locking crash bars. These file cabinets are in secured areas, accessible only to the EAP staff outlined above, and are locked when not in use. These records are always maintained separate from other systems of record. Computers containing records are discrete from other computer systems and/or are password protected. Computers are also stored in secured areas, accessible only to the EAP staff outlined above.

c. Procedural Safeguards: All persons having access to these records shall already have been trained in the proper handling of records covered by the Privacy Act and 42 CFR Part 2 (Confidentiality of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Patient Records). These acts restrict disclosures to unique situations, such as threats of physical harm, medical emergencies, and suspected child abuse, except where the client has consented in writing to such disclosure. Clients of the EAP will be informed in writing of the confidentiality provisions. Secondary disclosure of released information is prohibited without client consent.

RETENTION AND DISPOSAL:

Records are retained for three (3) years after the client's last contact with the EAP, or until any relevant litigation is resolved, or any periodic evaluation reports required by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, DOL, or other authorities are completed, in accordance with http://www.archives.gov/records-mgmt/grs/grs01.html (item #26). Some OASAM EAPs provide substance abuse evaluations as part of Federal Drug-Free Workplace Program. These records will be retained for five years after contact with the program has ceased or any litigation is completed. Individual states may require longer retention. The rules in this system notice should not be construed to authorize any violation of such state laws that have greater restrictions.

SYSTEM MANAGER(S) AND ADDRESS:

The Employee Assistance Program Administrator, Safety and Health Center, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20210.

NOTIFICATION PROCEDURE:

Inquiries should be mailed to the System Manager.

RECORD ACCESS PROCEDURES:

A request for access should be mailed to the System Manager.

CONTESTING RECORD PROCEDURES:

A petition for amendment should be mailed to the System Manager.

RECORDS SOURCE CATEGORIES:

Information contained in this system of records comes from the individual to whom it applies, the supervisor of the individual if the individual was referred to the EAP by a supervisor, the staff of the EAP, other therapists or organizations providing treatment and/or rehabilitation, and other sources whom the EAP believes may have information relevant to treatment of the individual.

SYSTEMS EXEMPTED FROM CERTAIN PROVISIONS OF THE ACT:

None.