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Ethical and Professional Issues

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1 Ethical and Professional Issues
Chapter 3 Ethical and Professional Issues

2 THE NEED FOR ETHICS Clients in crisis are vulnerable and easy to exploit and manipulate. Crises may bring out feelings and inappropriate behaviors in counselors. Provides an acceptable standard of behaviors among mental health practitioners.

Crisis work began with nonprofessional mental health workers Many don’t accept this because they are unaware of the history of crisis intervention. Often work in nonprofit settings in multidisciplinary team models

Counselors should be aware of their own emotions, values, opinions, and behaviors. Should not impose one’s values on clients. Countertransference occurs when counselor’s past unresolved issues interfere with objective and appropriate care of a client

5 DUAL RELATIONSHIPS Counselors should have only one relationship with a client: the therapeutic one No sexual, romantic, friendships, business, or social relationship allowed Why? Power differential between client and counselor exists.

6 CONFIDENTIALITY All disclosures by clients are private and counselors may not share information with anyone except supervisors. The legal counterpart is called Privileged communication, and the client owns it in court.

1. Elder abuse and disabled adult abuse reporting 2. Child abuse reporting 3. Duty to warn (Tarasoff Case) 4. Client signs a waiver and gives permission to breech confidentiality 5. Client sues counselor in court action

8 INFORMED CONSENT Clients have rights to understand nature of counseling situation 1. Must give consent for treatment 2. Must understand any risks and benefits of treatment 3. Must consent voluntarily and terminate voluntarily

Unlicensed counselors must work under supervision of licensed counselors Licensed counselors must participate in on-going continuing education May not work with clients unless one is qualified through training or experience

10 Three Dimensions of Burnout
1. Lack of personal accomplishment. 2. Emotional Exhaustion. 3. Depersonalization and deindividuation of clients. Definition of Burnout: “A syndrome of physical and emotional exhaustion, involving the development of negative self concept, negative job attitudes, and a loss of concern and feelings for clients.”

11 How to prevent burnout Talk with co-workers Go see your own therapist
Engage in a healthy lifestyle, eat, exercise, have fun and play

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