Ethical code

Topic: BusinessHard Work
Sample donated:
Last updated: May 8, 2019
Ethical Code:Section “A” summary
THE COUNSELING RELATIONSHIP:~Counselor encourages client growth and promote welfare through healthy relationships~Explore cultural backgrounds and explore own values and beliefs


A.1: WELFARE OF THOSE SERVED BY COUNSELORA.1.a: “Primary Responsiblity” respect the dignity and promote client welfareA.1.b “Records” Keep accurate records on client progress and correct them if needed.

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A.1.c: “Counseling plans” Counselor and client work together at devising a plan to promote success.

Update and visit plan to be be effectiveA.1.d “Support Network Involvement” Use other resources(friends, family, religious) as support when appropriate with client consent. A.

1.e “employment needs” When the client needs to be placed in a job, needs to be consistent with client’s needs.

INFORMED CONSENT IN RELATIONSHIPA.2.a “Informed Consent” Client can choose to leave or enter relationship. Counselor should inform client verbally and writing about responsibilities for both parties. Continue to review through relationship.


b Types of Info Needed” Counselors explain to clients all services provided.~Inform clients of: purposes, goals, techniques, procedures, limitations, potential risks, and benefits of services; qualifications, credentials,and relevant experience; continuation of services death of a counselor ~Also inform: clients understand the implications of diagnosis, the intended use of tests and reports, fees, and billing arrangements ~confidentiality limits, obtain info from records, right to refuse service

A.2.c and A.2.


“Developmental and Cultural Sensitivity~Communicate in developmentally and culturally appropriate ways~Get an Interpreter if needed and adjust forms to suit clientsA.2.d “Inability to give Consent” Need a guardian’s consent when counseling minors or unable adults
CLIENTS SERVED BY OTHERS~If clients is seeing another mental health professional, should request release from client to communicate with the other counselor. (collaborative professional relationships)
Avoiding Harm and Imposing ValuesA.4.

a “avoiding harm” (clients, trainees, and research participants)A.4.b “Personal values” Be aware of own values, beliefs, attitude, etc and avoid imposing values that do not match counseling goals.

Respect diversity of client

A.5 (a and b)
Roles and Relationships with ClientsA.5.a “Current clients” No sexual relationships with the client or anyone connected to themA.5.b “Former Clients” Wait 5 years form last session before entering in, but avoid if this will cause harm.

A.5 (c and d)
A.5.c “nonprofessional interactions or relationships(not sexual)” Nonprofessional relationships with anyone connected to the client should be avoided unless potentially beneficial. A.5.d “potentially beneficial interactions” Document prior to including rationale, benefit, consequences.

Client should give consent, and if harm is done, counselor should try and remedy.

A.5.e “Role changes in the professional relationship”~If the counselor’s role changes, the clients mus consent and hear the rights to refuse services.

Examples of role change: 1.chng from ind. to relationship or family counseling2.

chg form counselor to researcher3.change from counselor to mediator role (all vise versa)4. change from a non-forensic eval role to therapeutic~clients must be fully informed


ROLES AND RELATIONSHIPS AT INDV, GROUP, INSTITUTIONAL AND SOCIETAL LEVELSA.6.a “Advocacy” Advocate when appropriate to examine barriers for developmentA.6.b “confidentiality and advocacy”~obtain client consent prior to engaging in advocacy for an identifiable client to improve services and remove barriers for growth.


“Multiple clients”~if counselor agrees to provide counseling to two or more people with relationship, counselor clarifies nature of relationships/role to each person. ~if roles start to conflict, the counselor will clarify, adjust, or withdraw roles
GROUP WORKA.8.a “Screening” select members whose needs and goals are similar, who will not take away from the group, and who will not be jeopardized by the groupA.8.

b “protecting clients” in group setting, need to take precautions to protect clients from physical, emotional, or psychological trauma.

End of Life care for terminally ill clients~Enable clients to make informed decisions~Counselor may choose not to work with client~counselor can break confidentiality depending on state laws, consult first


Fees and Bartering~Est fees that consider ses of the area~Assist in making an appropriate fee structure~If not payed, offer opportunity to pay~Bartering should look at culture, relationship, and exploitive nature~Gifts: can be a sign of respect, but examine motivation before accepting and declining
TERMINATION~Do not abandon! Assist in finding appropriate treatment~if decline referral, then you can discontinue~Always recommend other services ~Use appropriate process to transfer client~terminate when the client no longer needs it or is being harmed by continuous counseling
Technology in counseling~Use appropriate services~do not violate any laws for the website~Inform client of benefits and limitations of using technology
Section B
Confidentiality, Privileged Communication, and Privacy
RESPECT FOR CLIENTS:B.1.a: Multicultural/Diversity considerations~keep awareness/sensitivity about cultural meanings of confidentiality and privacyB.1.b: Respect for privacy: use info helpful to counseling processB.

1.c:Respect confidentiality:don’t share w/o consent or legal justificationB.1.d:Explanation of Limitations-Inform clients of confidentiality limitations

B.2 (a,b,c,d)
EXCEPTIONS TO CONFIDENTIALITYB2.a:Danger/legal requir: conf is broken to protect or legal demandB2.b: Contagious/life-treatening diseases:confirm disease before informing 3rd party of diseaseB2.c:Court ordered disclosure: obtain permission to preserve relationshipB2.

d: Minimal disclosure: only essential info to be given

B.3 (a,b,c,d,e)
INFO SHARED WITH OTHERS:A: Subordinates: ensure privacy around othersB: Treatment teams: inform client about team, what will be shared and the purpose of the team.~Confidential settings should be ensure for privacyC: 3rd party payers: disclose info that client authorizedD: Transmitting Conf. info: take every precaution to ensure confidentiality(ex: technology)E:Deceased Clients: protect conf. within legal requirements.

B.4 (a,b)
GROUPS AND FAMILY CONF. B4.a: Group work: explain importance of conf. B4.b:Couples and family counseling: clearly define who the “client” is and discuss expectations and limitations of conf.
B.5 (a,b,c)
CLIENTS LACKING CAPACITY TO GIVE INFORMED CONSENT:A:Minors/lacking adults: maintain their conf.

based on state lawsB:Parents/guardians: inform parents of the conf. counseling relationship but keep a collaborative relationship open.C: Release of conf. info: explain on the level of their understanding about disclosure of info to 3rd party.

(get their permission)

RECORDSa~Secure them in a safe locationb~get permission to recordc~get permission for someone to observed~let client have access to records if it will not cause harm. (block out info of others that are involved with the group)e~help interpret record for clientf~get permission to transfer or disclose recordg~Store records after termination/dispose in a way that maintains conf. h~protect conf.

after termination/death

Section C:
Professional Responsiblity~self-care to maintain and promote well-being to meet professional responsibility
Knowledge of standards: ~need to read and understand the ACA code of ethics
Professional competence:a ~Practice within competency level, training, educationb ~Specialty areas: practice in new areas only after education, training, and supervision completed(do not cause harm)c ~Accept employment only for what you are qualified ford ~improve/monitor effectivenesse ~Consult with others about ethical obligationsf ~Continue education and keep up new informationg ~suspend practicing if counselor becomes impairedh ~Plan with colleague on how to transfer files/clients if counselor dies
“Advertising and soliciting to clients”A~Accurate Advertising:Identify accurate credentialsB~Do not use testimonials from clients that can be vulnerable to harm from themC~Use accurate statements by othersD~Do not recruit for private practice through your jobE~Accurately advertise your own product/training F~Do not promote products through counseling or training sessions(can use a textbook that authored for instruction)


Professional QualificationsA~Accurately represent yourself and qualificationsB~Claim credentials/licenses that are currentC~Differentiate between earned and honorary degreesD~Do not imply doctoral level competence with a masters degreeE ~state the accreditation status of program F ~Differentiate accurate membership with associations
Nondiscrimination:~Do not discriminate based on age, culture, ethnicity, race, religion, etc
Section D. 1 (a-i)
Relationships with other Professionals:A: Different approaches:Respect approaches that are different from yoursB:Network with colleagues from other disciplines to serve clientsC:Interdisciplinary teamwork: When working with a team, keep the focus on how to serve the clientD: When serving in a judiciary role, define role and maintain confidentialityE:If team of colleagues is unable to find solution, should look elsewhere to best serve clientF: Select staff based on their skillsG: Alert employers of inappropriate practicesH: do not harass or dismiss employee who acted ethically
D.2 (a-d)
Consultation:A: Ensure proper competencies when acting as consultantB: Have a clear understanding when working as consultantC: Goals: Growth toward self-direction encouragedD: Consultant should review Conf.

rights of counselor and client

Section E summary
Evaluation, assessment, and Interpretation
General:1: Assessment: valid/reliable test2: Client welfare: don’t misuse assessment/interpretations. respect client right to know
Competence to use interpret assessment instruments1: limits of competence: use only what one has been trained for2: Appropriate use: responsible application of assessments3: Decisions based on results: counselor responsible for decisions involving indvid/policies based on assessment results
Informed consent in assessmentsA: Explanation to clients: explain purpose of assessment before testingB: recipients of results: consider client’s welfare before showing people
Release of data to qualified professionals:a: release assessment data only w/client consent
Diagnosis of Mental Disorders:a: Proper diagnosis: take special care to provide proper diagnosisb: Cultural Sensitivity: SES and cultural experience considered when diagnosingd:Recognize social and cultural prejudicese: refrain from diagnosing if this will cause harm to client
What is the purpose of Ethics?
~Guidelines for Mental health professionals~resource for ethical decisions~broad and general guidelines~use own ethical awareness to problem solve and interpret~be aware of limitations~not blueprints/ need own judgement~Primary purpose: safeguard welfare of clients/best interests~safeguard professionals to provide the best service
5 main purposes of the code of ethics
1:Can clarify the nature of ethical responsibilities; constant for all2: supports mission of the counseling association3:est principles to define ethical behavior and good practices4:ethical guide to provide a professional course of action to promote good values in the profession5: basis for ethical complaints initiated against members
Tarasoff Case
-Duty to warn the individual before releasing client with intent to harm
*Know limitations of confidentiality
-legal-protect from harm-consultations, get consent from -treatment team with consent-working under supervision-assistants handle confidential info

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