Respond to at least two of your colleagues by suggesting strategies to address the legal and ethical considerations your colleagues discussed. Support your responses with evidence-based literature.
1-When a client is under therapy, a lot of legal implications are to be adhered to. When this setting turns into a group one, all those still apply, and any information shared in that time and space is to be kept confidential unless the professional sees any reason to disclose any part of the information to law enforcement or family (Ware & Dillman-Taylor, 2014). other than that, all clients should be given a detailed guide explaining the way the sessions will go so they know what is expected of them and what they can opt-out of if they aren’t comfortable. Informed consent is a concept that needs to be explained to everyone so they can understand where they are. The therapists can also not promise full confidentiality because not all participants can be controlled, so complete confidentiality can’t be promised.
Prepping the participants for all kinds of activities is very important because one weak link in the chain can be the difference between a fruitful session and someone feeling uncomfortable. The client should have individual professional bonds with all parts of the group to ensure that he/she understands them and their concerns also to make sure that the participants are comfortable too (Wheeler, 2014). Group therapy has its merits, but it takes experience in managing a group of people who can, at times, be emotionally turbulent, especially with the goals of the session. Learning to control the flow of energy in the room is just as important as the other outcomes of therapy.
When dealing with a family or a group of individuals that are very familiar with each other, care must be taken, and one should learn to read the room so that the session can be taken at a satisfactory pace as every person has a different speed of procession emotions.
Ware, J.N., & Dillman-Taylor, D. (2014). Concerns about confidentiality: The application of ethical decision-making within-group play therapy. International Journal of Play Therapy, 23(3), 172-186. doi:10.1037/a0036667
Wheeler, K. (Eds.). (2014). Psychotherapy for the advanced practice psychiatric nurse: A how-to guide for evidence-based practice. New York, NY: Springer.
2_Patient confidentiality is a very important principle in the provision of care to patients.Both legally and ethically, healthcare providers are duty bound to maintain the confidentiality of any information that they receive from patients. In individual psychotherapy, psychotherapists find it easier to maintain the confidentiality of information they receive from patients. Maintaining confidentiality becomes more difficult when therapy is provided in a group or family format. This form of therapy involves more than one individual and this makes it harder to ensure that any information provided during therapy will be kept confidential.
Group therapy has emerged as a cost efficient and effective form of therapy. During group therapy, group members are able to interact with each other and with the therapist. Interaction between group members is helpful to the therapeutic process. However, this form of therapy increases the changes of breaches of confidentiality.
McClanahan(2019) wrote that the involvement of multiple people in a therapy session increases the risk for breaches of confidentiality and this is harmful to the therapeutic process. In addition to the risk of breaches of confidentiality, this form of therapy inhibits some patients from being forthcoming. The therapy process involves patients candidly speaking about their innermost thoughts and feelings. Being required to do this in front of a lot of people dissuades some patients from participating in discussions and this affects the benefits they receive from treatment. According to Applebaum(1994), the lack of a legal obligation for participants in group therapy to maintain confidentiality is a significant drawback to the effectiveness of group therapy. Therapists do not have any legal authority to enforce confidentiality among members of the group. They can only appeal to group members to maintain the confidentiality of others who participate in therapy with them. This lack of authority hinders the ability of therapists to provide effective treatment to patients. According to Lasky and Riva(2006), the therapist has an obligation to explain confidentiality and how it cannot be assured in a group setting to group members. This is important because some members of the group might assume that they are legally protected from breaches of confidentiality in the group setting. It is important to let them know that is not the situation. This will allow patients to decide whether they want to participate in group therapy or not.
In family therapy, there might be difficulties in drawing boundaries between family members. Family members tend to be much involved in the lives of patients and might affect the ability of the therapist to interact with the patient. Ellis(2012) wrote that in family therapy, the therapist has to define the role of each member of the family in therapy and the limits of confidentiality for all of them.
The differences between ethical and legal considerations for group/family therapy and individual therapy will influence therapeutic approaches. Different therapeutic approaches have been found to be more effective in different settings. In deciding which approach to use for a patient, the therapist has a duty to determine whether the approach will be more effective in the group setting or in individual therapy.
Applebaum,P.S.(1994).Confidentiality in Group Therapy.Clinician’s Research Digest, Vol 11(9), Sep, 1993. pp. 4
Ellis,E.M.(2012).What Are the Confidentiality Rights of Collaterals in Family Therapy?American Journal of Family Therapy (AM J FAM THER), Oct-Dec2012; 40(5): 369-384. (16p)
Lasky,G.B., & Riva,M.T.(2006).Confidentiality and Privileged Communication in Group Psychotherapy.International Journal of Group Psychotherapy; Oct2006, Vol. 56 Issue 4, p455-476, 22p
McClanahan,K.K.(2019).Can Confidentiality be Maintained in Group Therapy? Retrieved from http://nationalpsychologist.com/2014/07/can-confidentiality-be-maintained-in-group-therapy/102566.html
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