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Flashcards in Ethics Deck (33):

The two professional organizations design for counselors:

ACA- 18 divisions
APA- 17 divisions


The ethical practice of counseling can occur on two levels

Mandatory ethics:
Focuses on compliance with minimal standards of Laws and ethical codes. Counselors who focus only on mandatory ethics may be vulnerable to denial, distortion, discounting, or dismissing of ethical questions and issues.

Aspirational ethics:
When counselors practice aspirational ethics, they practiced the highest standards of conduct and demonstrate an understanding of the spirit behind the code.


The ethical standards of the association or present in two separate documents:

Standard of practice
Brief and focus on the minimal behavior required by professional counselors (mandatory ethics)

Code of ethics
More details; ideal of the profession.
(Aspirational ethics)


Scope of practice

Recognized areas of proficiency or competent gain through appropriate education and experience.

Scope of practice concept suggest the counselors should only practice using techniques for which they have been trained.


Professional ethics

Agreed-upon standards that define what is "good" as well as the "ideal" practice of the profession



Are distinguished from ethics in that laws dictate minimum standards of behavior, rather than ideal standards



Is both and ethical in a legal concept in that counselors need to meet the minimum standard of performance in order to practice in a given state (legal concept) as well as Strive for maximum levels of knowledge and skills.



The obligation of professionals to respect the privacy of clients and the information they provide


Limit of confidentiality

Child abuse
Intent to do harm
Information related to counseling of a minor
Counselors under supervision
Court ordered
When the client consents to disclosure
Clients file a complaint against their counselor


In regards to group counseling

ACA code of ethics does not guarantee confidentiality


Family counseling

Counselors should not disclose information about one family member to another unless consent is given


Duty to warn and to protect

Identifying those clients who are likely to do physical harm to third party.

Protecting third parties from client

Treating those clients who are dangerous


Continuing education

Counselors "should recognize the need for continuing education " to maintain a reasonable level of competence in the field


Dual relationships

ACA warns counselors to avoid those dual relationships "that could impaired judgment or increase the risk of harm to the client"

Sexual intimacy with current clients are always on unethical and unethical with former clients 2 to 5 years after termination


Informed consents
Contractual document that addresses:

Therapeutic process
Background of counselor
Cost of the treatment
Length of treatment
Benefits and risk of treatment
Nature and purpose of confidentiality


Informed consent has three levels with ethical and legal implications

Possess The ability to make a rational decision.
Has sufficient information and be able to understand the information.
Be acting freely in the decision-making process


Record keeping

Information in the clients record belongs to the client.

Maintenance of actual records is the responsibility of the counselor

Sausages keeping records for 7 to 15 years after termination


Family educational rights and privacy act of 1974

Give parents of minors as well as students 18 years old or older the right to:
Access to educational records.
Protection of the institution for releasing information to a third-party without written consent



Failure to render professional services

Legal concept involving negligence that results in injury or loss to the client



Occurs when the counselor departs from ordinary practice or fails to exercise due care.


The most frequent allegations of malpractice involves:

Violation of confidentiality
Sexual misconduct
Failure to prevent suicide
Other allegations of incompetent treatment



Keep certain information concealed
Disposal of records
Video /audio recording
Not being identified in waiting rooms
Credit card information
Use of computer scoring services


Privilege communication

Is a legal concept

Laws protects clients from having confidential information disclosed in a court of law without their permission



Produce copies of records

Appear for a disposition, court hearing, or trial.

Appears and bring their records with them.

Don't ignore subpoena

All legal attempt should be made to protect clients info



Pay damages

Intentionally torts includes battery, defamation, invasion of privacy, and infliction of mental distress


Six moral principles upon which ethical codes are established and involved in ethical decision-making:

Autonomy: clients right to make their own choices.

Beneficence: pursues what is good and helpful for their client.

Nonmaleficence: do no harm

Justice: equal treatment

Fidelity: counseling relationships is based on trust.

Veracity: obligated to deal truthfully and honesty with cLients


Counseling became popular after the 1931 publication of

Workbook in vocations by Proctor, Benefield, and Wrenn.


Group movement

Began in the late 1960s


Forms of managed care

Health maintenance organization (HMOs) which use a restricted group of providers to provide specific services at a fixed cost.

Preferred provider organization (PPO). Which purchase services from specific providers at a reduced rate.

Independent practice association (IPAs) which allows consumers to choose independent practitioners and see them in their office rather than in an HMO facility.


Advantages and disadvantage of managed care

Limited cost of services compared to traditional health insurance.
Increase access to mental health services
No exclusion due to pre- existing condition
Increased referral rate

Limited choice in providers
Inability to consult a specialist directly
Reduction in the variety of services available
Potential overuse of medication
Limited treatment duration


Various ethical issues

A temptation exists in a managed care environment to "upcode" a client diagnosed, or assign a more serious diagnosis in order to obtain more counseling sessions.

The counselor must resist the temptation to "downcode" a client diagnosis to one for which the managed care company will reimburse.


Direct liability and vicarious liability

Direct liability: refers to an action or inaction by the supervisor that causes harm to a client, such as failing to address the suicidal ideation of supervisee' client.

Vicarious liability: occurs when the supervisor is held liable for the behavior of the supervise even though the supervisor may be unaware of the behavior.


The type of mental health services provided to the client is coded via

The AMAs Current Procedural terminology (e.g. CPT 90844)