Legal and Ethical Issues W1-4 discussions
[Student’s Full Name]
According to the American Counseling Association, counseling is “a collaborative effort between the counselor and client. Professional counselors help clients identify goals and potential solutions to problems that cause emotional turmoil; seek to improve communication and coping skills; strengthen self-esteem, and promote behavior change and optimal mental health.” (ACA, 2015) That way, counseling is a two-way effort to ensure patients’ health. In the same way, depending on the patients’ needs, the counselor will adapt, as to offer the best care possible.
In this essay, after completing the assessment found in the textbook; we shall answer a few questions pertaining the evaluation, and our prospective practice as counselors.
Identify five items from the survey that caused you to have the strongest reactions, prompted your most profound thinking, or challenged you the most when selecting an answer.
The questions that caused us the strongest reactions were 18; 1; 30; 23, and 24. We realized that those questions concerned physicality in the interactions between patient and counselor. We consider the items provocative as they try to assess whether or not the counselor would intimate with its patient. Strictly speaking, therapy is a private activity (Orbach, 2005), and sex, although a possibility between patient and counselor should be avoided as it could cause further problems and confusions.
Also, although many schools of therapy consider that touching, nor caring about the patient is allowed; we think it can help in building a stronger bond between the patient and the counselor, provided both respect their boundaries (Smith & Fitzpatrick, 1995). Concerning the students’ answers; they chose an entirely different path, focusing on the risks of group and family therapy. This indicates a difference of views, as they concentrate on the more technical problems of treatment rather than the implications of said therapy.
Provide brief summaries of the best arguments you can construct in favor of and opposed to rational suicide and compare and contrast the implications of each.
Rational suicide as an ethical subject has different advocates, for and against. In the beginning, it can be seen as a religious them, instead of a moral problem. Major religions consider suicide an unnatural act that attempts against the dignity of life, On the other hand, many consider suicide a rational option for patients with disabling conditions that maim their life quality. That way, the question that rises is “What is a “fulfilling life”?
Does someone have to carry on living when that life has no meaning and does not fulfill them? As we said, both arguments have strong advocates, but strictly speaking, every person should have the right to die whenever they consider fit (Clarke, 1999). On the other hand, those against, believe that religion plays a significant role in the issue of death. Since major religions consider suicide a sin, they would not do it as it would mean destroying their possibilities of an afterlife (Deathwithdignity, 2015). As we can see, the issue remains on religious grounds. To people that do not ascribe to a religion, rational suicide is a choice, whereas to religious people, it is not.
Assume you are counseling a client whose reporting raises serious concerns regarding danger to self or danger to another. Briefly describe the associated scenario. Then identify the main legal, ethical, and clinical issues raised by the case.
In the beginning, we should have to do a risk assessment and determine whether or not the patient is a harm to itself or others. That first evaluation should serve as an opportunity to gather information about the patient, and the risks associated with another try to end its life (Shallcross, 2010). That way, upon this first evaluation, the clinical supervisor would be aware of the risks and proceed with a thorough evaluation. That way, our questions as a counselor would be on whether or not the patient can receive counseling, or if it needs psychiatric therapy. Legally, a counselor must maintain the confidentiality of the patients’ state but if the clinical factors tell otherwise, its state can be disclosed to prevent any caregiver of the patient’s situation. Ethically, if the client wants counseling, but it requires psychiatric treatment, it would be impossible for the counselor to provide the adequate care (Simon, 1992).
What does it mean to be a competent professional?; How will you assess your competence as a human services professional?; How will you maintain your competence as an effective human services professional?
To be competent professional, one must abide by the ethics code of our profession. A professional who is not aware of the ethical rules of its profession would not be considered competent by any means. You can be a good counselor, but a professional has a broader and deeper meaning (Corey, 2011). In the same way, to assess our competence, a process of insight is necessary, along with a supervision of the curricula taught in universities in the country (Roe, 2002). There are substantial differences in practice that do not obey to the counselor’s subjectivity but differences in preparation. That way, to maintain a healthy practice, it is important to keep updated in any new discoveries concerning the profession as a way to provide the most extensive a thorough care possible.
Clarke, D. (1999). Autonomy, rationality and the wish to die. Journal of Medical Ethics, 25(6), 457-462. Retrieved August 6, 2015, from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10635498
Corey, G., & Corey, M. (2015). Issues and ethics in the helping professions (9th ed.). Pacific Grove, Calif.: Brooks/Cole Publishing.
Orbach, S. (2005). The impossibility of sex. London: Karnac.
Religion and Spirituality. (2015). Retrieved August 6, 2015, from http://www.deathwithdignity.org/historyfacts/religion
Roe, R. (2002). What Makes a Competent Psychologist? European Psychologist, 192-202. Retrieved August 6, 2015, from https://atmire.com/dspace-labs3/bitstream/handle/123456789/6646/file14682.pdf?sequence=1
Shallcross, L. (2010, July 25). Confronting the threat of suicide. Retrieved August 6, 2015, from http://ct.counseling.org/2010/07/confronting-the-threat-of-suicide/
Simon, R. (1992). Treatment Boundary Violations: Clinical, Ethical, and Legal Considerations. Bull Am Acad Psychiatry Law, 20(3), 269-288. Retrieved August 6, 2015, from http://www.jaapl.org/content/20/3/269.full.pdf
Smith, D., & Fitzpatrick, M. (1995). Patient^therapist boundary issues: An integrative review of theory and research. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 26(5), 499-506. Retrieved August 6, 2015, from http://main3.amu.edu.pl/~uamzpoip/etyka/patient_therapist ethics.pdf
What is Professional Counseling? (2015). Retrieved August 6, 2015, from http://www.counseling.org/aca-community/learn-about-counseling/what-is-counseling/overview