Keys to youth friendly services - Ensuring confidentiality

Maintaining confidentiality and promoting young people’s right to confidentiality is essential to creating trust and encouraging young people to visit and continue using a service for preventive care and counselling.

Young people have a right to privacy and autonomy (as set out in Article 4 of Sexual Rights: an IPPF Declaration). Service providers will need to consider how to respect that right in every aspect of their practice. Guidelines on medical ethics from professional organisations support maintaining confidentiality making the right to confidential advice and services explicit in promotional materials for services.


  • a case study showing the way in which breaching confidentiality can impact on the way a client feels about a service
  • a case study illustrating the scope and limitation of confidentiality, where there is a legal obligation to seek parental consent
  • a checklist of ways in which a youth-friendly health professional balances the obligation to maintain confidentiality with child protection issues