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Confidentiality in Psychotherapy and Counseling

Resources

This resource page is part of an Online Course
Confidentiality in Psychotherapy and Counseling

CE Credits for Psychologists. CE Credits (CEUs) for LMFTs, Social Workers, Counselors and Nurses.
CE Approvals by BBS-CA, ASWB, NBCC, NAADAC, CA-BRN & more.
Zur Institute is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Zur Institute maintains responsibility for this program and its content.

 

 

General Resources

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Tarasoff Updates

 

Reporting Past Abuse

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Internet, Telemental Health, and Digital Confidentiality

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Miscellaneous

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Confidentiality and HIV/AIDS

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Books

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Confidentiality Updates

2016: Regulatory CA Boards and Confidentiality

2015: More Reasonable Breach Notification Reporting Periods For CA Health Care Providers In 2015

2010: Internet and Digital Considerations
Recent development in telehealth and online social networking have presented new and highly complex challenges to practitioners in regard to confidentiality and privacy issues. You can find information on this topic at http://www.zurinstitute.com/articles_digitalethics.html or in our online course for CE credit on Digital Ethics.

2010: APA Highlights Collaboration with CPA In Court Victory Protecting Confidentiality In Psychotherapy
In Marquez v Garcia CPA and APA urged the California Court of Appeals to reverse a lower court decision that directed both the disclosure of a psychologist's records at the Betty Ford Center as well as the deposition of the psychologist. The brief emphasized that confidentiality was the foundation of effective psychotherapy because the treatment depends upon patients' comfort in being completely candid in discussing the most intimate details of their lives. The brief also highlighted that the lower court's decision violated the very strong California law protecting patients' confidentiality in the treatment received from a psychologist. The APA article quoted your Editor who cited the defendant's attorneys who were forthright in stating that the authority of brief provided by CPA and APA was a critical factor in the Appeals Court decision which overturned the lower court's decision and upheld the law protecting the confidentiality of the patient during psychotherapy. Source: Progress Notes, CPA, 2010.

2009: New Laws in California Against 'Snooping': AB211 & SB541
Hospital and psychotherapists in private practice could see stiff penalties for privacy breaches under two new California states laws. Two new state medical privacy laws, AB211 and SB541, make it possible for institutions and individuals to be fined up to $250,000 for being lax when it comes to the medical privacy of California residents. These laws are partly a result of privacy breaches of several high-profile celebrities, such as singer Britney Spears and California First Lady Maria Shriver. Hospitals and other covered entities in California may have to beef up their privacy and security compliance programs in light of recently enacted state legislation that slaps stiffer penalties on entities and employees who violate patient privacy.

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Additional References

Anderson, S. M., & Muñoz Proto, C. (2016). Ethical requirements and responsibilities in video methodologies: Considering confidentiality and representation in social justice research. Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 10: 377–389. doi: 10.1111/spc3.12259.

Anestis, M. D., & Green, B. A. (2015). The impact of varying levels of confidentiality on disclosure of suicidal thoughts in a sample of United States National Guard personnel. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 71, 1023–1030. doi:10.1002/jclp.22198

Bersoff, D. N. (2014). Protecting victims of violent patients while protecting confidentiality. American Psychologist, 69(5), 461-467. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/a0037198

Borkoskya, B., & Smit, D. M. (2015). The risks and benefits of disclosing psychotherapy records to the legal system: What psychologists and patients need to know for informed consent. International Journal of Law and Psychiatry, 42-43, 19–30. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijlp.2015.08.003

Ciliberti, R., Alfano, L., Rocca, G., & Bandini, T. (2016). The working alliance in psychotherapy: Risk, criticism and perspectives in the Italian context. Psychiatry, Psychology and Law, 1-6. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13218719.2016.1247638

Fisher, M. A. (2016). Confidentiality limits in psychotherapy: Ethics checklists for mental health professionals. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Groshong, L., & Phillips, D. (2015). The impact of electronic communication on confidentiality in clinical social work practice. Clinical Social Work Journal, 43(2), 142-150. doi:10.1007/s10615-015-0527-4

Herbert, S. D., Harvey, E. A., & Halgin, R. P. (2015). The balancing act—Ethical issues in parent training research: Confidentiality, harm reduction, and methodology. Ethics & Behavior, 25(3), 222-232. doi: 10.1080/10508422.2014.928777

Hertlein, K. M., Blumer M. L. C, & Mihaloliakos, J. H. (2014). Marriage and family counselors' perceived ethical issues related to online therapy. The Family Journal, 23(1), 5-12. https://doi.org/10.1177/1066480714547184

Hooley, I. (2016). Ethical considerations for psychotherapy in natural settings. Ecopsychology, 8(4), 215-221. doi:10.1089/eco.2016.0008.

Mosher, P. W., & Berman, J. (2015). Confidentiality and its discontents: Dilemmas of privacy in psychotherapy. New York, NY: Fordham University Press.

Munoz, M. T., Olivari C., Sorum, P. C., & Mullet, E. (2014). Minors' and adults’ views about confidentiality. Vulnerable Children and Youth Studies, 9(2), 97-103. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17450128.2013.832827

Olivari, C., Munoz, M. T., Sorum, P. C., & Mullet, E. (2015). Is it acceptable for a psychologist to break a young client's confidentiality? Comparing Latin American (Chilean) and Western European (French) viewpoints. Universitas Psychologica, 14(1), 231-244. http://dx.doi.org/10.11144/Javeriana.upsy14-1.iapb

Ross, D. B., Gale, J., & Goetz, J. (2016). Ethical issues and decision making in collaborative financial therapy. Journal of Financial Therapy, 7(1), 3. http://dx.doi.org/10.4148/1944-9771.1087

Thomas-Anttila, K. (2015), Confidentiality and consent issues in psychotherapy case reports: The wolf man, Gloria and Jeremy. British Journal of Psychotherapy, 31, 360–375. doi:10.1111/bjp.12157

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