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Manual of Articles Sections 5 - 10
National Association of Social Workers
1.07 Privacy and confidentiality
American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists
2.1 Marriage and family therapists may not disclose client confidences except: (a) as mandated by law; (b) to prevent a clear and immediate danger to a person or persons; (c) where the therapist is a defendant in a civil, criminal, or disciplinary action arising from the therapy (in which case silent confidences may be disclosed in the course of that action); or (d) if there is a waiver previously obtained in writing, and then such information may be revealed only in accordance with the terms of the waiver. In circumstances where more than one person in a family receives therapy, each such family member who is legally competent to execute a waiver must agree to the waiver required by subparagraph (d). Without such a waiver from each family member legally competent to execute a waiver; a therapist cannot disclose information received from any family member.
2.2 Marriage and Family therapists use client and/or client materials in teaching, writing, and public presentation only if a written waiver has been obtained in accordance with Subprinciple 2.1 (d), or when appropriate steps have been taken to protect client identity and confidentiality.
2.3 Marriage and family therapists store or dispose of client records in ways that maintain confidentiality.
American Psychological Association
5. Privacy and Confidentiality
American Counseling Association Code of Ethics Excerpt - Section B: Confidentiality Standard of Practice
#9. Confidentiality Requirement. Counselors must keep information related to counseling services confidential unless disclosure is in the best interest of clients, is required for the welfare of others, or is required by law. When disclosure is required, only information that is essential is revealed and the client is informed of such disclosure.
National Board for Certified Counselors Code of Ethics
Section B: Counseling Relationship
2. Certified counselors know and take into account the traditions and practices of other professional disciplines with whom they work and cooperate fully with such. If a person is receiving similar services from another professional, certified counselors do not offer their own services directly to such a person. If a certified counselor is contacted by a person who is already receiving similar services from another professional, the certified counselor carefully considers that professional relationship as well as the client’s welfare and proceeds with caution and sensitivity to the therapeutic issues. When certified counselors learn that their clients are in a professional relationship with another counselor or mental health professional, they request release from the clients to inform the other counselor or mental health professional of their relationship with the client and strive to establish positive and collaborative professional relationships that are in the best interest of the client. Certified counselors discuss these issues with clients and the counselor or professional so as to minimize the risk of confusion and conflict, and encourage clients to inform other professionals of the new professional relationship.
3. Certified counselors may choose to consult with any other professionally competent person about a client and must notify clients of this right. Certified counselors avoid placing a consultant in a conflict-of-interest situation that would preclude the consultant serving as a proper party to the efforts of the certified counselor to help the client.
4. When a client’s condition indicates that there is a clear and imminent danger to the client or others, the
5. Records of the counseling relationship, including interview notes, test data, correspondence, audio or visual tape recordings, electronic data storage, and other documents are to be considered professional information for use in counseling. Records should contain accurate factual data. The physical records are property of the certified counselors or their employers. The information contained in the records belongs to the client and therefore may not be released to others without the consent of the client or when the counselor has exhausted challenges to a court order. The certified counselors are responsible to ensure that their employees handle confidential information appropriately. Confidentiality must be maintained during the storage and disposition of records. Records should be maintained for a period of at least five (5) years after the last counselor/client contact, including cases in which the client is deceased. All records must be released to the client upon request.
6. Certified counselors must ensure that data maintained in electronic storage are secure. By using the best computer security methods available, the data must be limited to information that is appropriate and necessary for the services being provided and accessible only to appropriate staff members involved in the provision of services. Certified counselors must also ensure that the electronically stored data are destroyed when the information is no longer of value in providing services or required as part of clients’ records.
7. Any data derived from a client relationship and used in training or research shall be so disguised that the informed client’s identity is fully protected. Any data which cannot be so disguised may be used only as expressly authorized by the client’s informed and uncoerced consent.
Evolution of Social Work Ethics by Mary Rankin, J.D.
The change in a social worker’s approach to ethical concerns is one of the most significant advances in our profession. Early in the 20th century, a social worker’s concern for ethics centered on the morality of the client, not the ethics of the profession or its practitioners. Over the next couple of decades, the emphasis on the client’s ethics began to weaken as social workers began developing new perspectives and methods that eventually would be fundamental to the profession, all in an effort to distinguish social work’s approach from other allied health professions.
The first attempt at creating a code of ethics was made in 1919, and by the 1940s and 1950s, social workers began to focus on the morality, values, and ethics of the profession, rather than the ethics and morality of the patient. As a result of the turbulent social times of the 1960s and 1970s, social workers began directing significant efforts towards the issues of social justice, social reform, and civil rights.
Tarasoff - Duty to Warn, Duty to Protect
Domestic Violence – Confidentiality and the Duty to Warn
Mandatory Reporting of Child Abuse
Reflection Exercise #1
Ethics CEU QUESTION 5
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