Ethics in the Practice of Psychology Ethical Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

Ethics in the Practice of Psychology

Ethical Decision-Making

Identify the problem.

The therapist must decide how to respond to several potential ethics issues that the client has brought to the client-therapist relationship. The therapist is considering options for responding that will preserve the integrity of the client-therapist relationship and that will avoid communicating any disregard for the ethnic traditions that are most likely influencing the client's actions.

Identify the potential issues involved.

While it is probable that the psychologist has reviewed the ethical guidelines that govern her work, the client has stepped outside of those bounds in several ways. Most notably, the client has not complied with the processes and constraints associated with fee payment, and the client has introduced complexity into the client-therapist relationship by making arrangements for the provision of therapy services to another family member without first discussing the matter with the therapist. In addition, the client has expressed interest in studying to be a psychologist -- a goal she is taking concrete steps to achieve. This decision could have been inadvertently influenced by the therapist, or simply be a case of the client overly identifying with the therapist and the sense of clarity she has received through the therapy session. Both -- or other possibilities -- warrant discussion in the therapeutic relationship.

Step 3: Review relevant ethical guidelines.

1.09 Respecting others - In their work-related activities, psychologists respect the rights of others to hold values, attitudes, and opinions that differ from their own.

3.06 In-person solicitation - Psychologists do not engage, directly or through agents, in uninvited in-person solicitation of business from actual or potential psychotherapy patients or clients or other persons who because of their particular circumstances are vulnerable to undue influence. However, this does not preclude attempting to implement appropriate collateral contacts with significant others for the purpose of benefiting an already engaged therapy patient.

4.03 Couple and family relationships - (a) When a psychologist agrees to provide services to several persons who have a relationship (such as husband and wife or parents and children), the psychologist attempts to clarify at the outset (1) which of the individuals are patients or clients and (2) the relationship the psychologist will have with each person. This clarification includes the role of the psychologist and the probable uses of the services provided or the information obtained. (See also Standard 5.01, Discussing the limits of confidentiality.) (b) As soon as it becomes apparent that the psychologist may be called on to perform potentially conflicting roles (such as marital counselor to husband and wife, and then witness for one party in a divorce proceeding), the psychologist attempts to clarify and adjust, or withdraw from, roles appropriately. (See also Standard 7.03, Clarification of role, under Forensic activities.)

Step 4: Know relevant laws and regulations.

Even though the psychologist is well-versed in the relevant laws and regulations that are relevant…

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