Confidentiality in foster care

Foster carers are given detailed information about children and the children’s histories so that the foster carers are able to provide the best possible care to the children. Information about the child is sensitive so must not be shared without permission from the children’s social worker. Generally, the only people who would have access to information about the children’s histories would be the approved foster carers, the fostering social worker (and their team), the children’s social worker (and their team) and the team around the child.

All professionals and others involved are expected to maintain confidentiality around the information. Some limited information would be provided to backup carers and other family members, according to what they need to know in order to be able to support the children effectively.

Foster carers (and others who are part of the team around the child) should never promise confidentiality to the children looked after; children should be aware that if they share information with foster carers and professionals which is connected to their welfare or wellbeing, the information will be shared with the children’s social worker and any other professionals who need to know (so that they can be involved in keeping the child safe).