Confidentiality, Informed Consent, Competence and Responsibility Term Paper

Pages: 4 (1118 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 0  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Psychology

Confidentiality, Informed Consent, Competence and Responsibility to Community: The Codes of Ethics of ACA, AAPC, and AACC

The American Counseling Association (ACA), American Association of Pastoral Counselors (AAPC), and American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC) are just few of the numerous extant organizations in the United States that offer and conduct counseling services guided buy its mission and vision, and most importantly, each organization's Code of Ethics. Ethics, as a branch of philosophy that concerns itself with issues about the norms of human conduct -- that is, knowing and distinguishing right from wrong, is the basic yet most essential foundation that counseling organizations should have in order to provide competent and quality service to their clients. Since the Code of Ethics pertain to the proper treatment of the counselors towards their client, the information generated, and colleagues in the profession, a strongly-formulated code would benefit not only the organization's credibility and competence, but most importantly, the clients' welfare.

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This paper compares and analyzes the codes of ethics of the three organizations mentioned: ACA, AAPC, and AACC. From each organization's code of ethics, the analysis includes a comparison of the organization's position about issues of confidentiality and informed consent to the client, competence of the counselors in their profession, and the organization's responsibility to their community about the issue of counseling and providing better welfare for civil society. In the texts that follow, it was found that the three organizations follow similar outlines about the concerns or issues that must be addressed in the code of ethics. In terms of ethical practices, it was also discovered that AACC held a more conservative stance about issues of client confidentiality and informed consent, as compared against ACA's and AAPC's pluralist views regarding their duty to client and profession.

TOPIC: Term Paper on Confidentiality, Informed Consent, Competence and Responsibility to Assignment

The ACA's code of ethics centers on a professional yet humane counseling treatments for its clients. Counselors must ensure the welfare of their clients by 'respecting their dignity,' which include, among others, "clients' freedom of choice" (Section A1c). In terms of client confidentiality, ACA believes in full disclosure about the steps involved in counseling and treatments related to it. Counselors inform their clients about the potential benefits and risks that they may encounter; thus, informing them about these benefits and risks would be preparing clients for unexpected results that may happen or occur after counseling and treatment (Section A3). ACA also puts importance on the confidentiality and dignity of "minor or incompetent clients" (i.e., "individuals who are unable to give voluntary consent") by soliciting the guidance of the individual's parents or guardians in the event that counseling would be necessary yet the client is unable to provide informed consent.

ACA promotes the value of nondiscrimination when choosing its clients for counseling as its way of owing public responsibility. Apart from nondiscrimination, the organization also strongly supports "accurate, honest, unbiased" reporting and judging of its professional activities. Moreover, in the event that counselors are to give public lectures or discuss a particular case on counseling, ACA recommends that the counselor/s be guided accordingly to the tenets stated in the Code of Ethics. That is, counselors must make sure that information given to the media (in any form) are "consistent with the Code of Ethics and the Standards of Practice," which means that they must protect the identity of the client from which the information was… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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How to Cite "Confidentiality, Informed Consent, Competence and Responsibility" Term Paper in a Bibliography:

APA Style

Confidentiality, Informed Consent, Competence and Responsibility.  (2005, June 12).  Retrieved August 3, 2021, from

MLA Format

"Confidentiality, Informed Consent, Competence and Responsibility."  12 June 2005.  Web.  3 August 2021. <>.

Chicago Style

"Confidentiality, Informed Consent, Competence and Responsibility."  June 12, 2005.  Accessed August 3, 2021.