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The Practice of Clinical Psychology

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The Practice of Clinical Psychology

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  • November 2012
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The Practice of Clinical Psychology Worksheet

Answer the following questions. Your response to each question must be at least 150 words in length.

1. What are at least two legal issues associated with clinical psychology? Provide an example of a situation that could be legal but unethical. Explain your response. Confidentiality is one issue associated with clinical psychology. It intersects the legal and ethical jurisdictions in the realm of psychotherapy. These issues are in conflict when legal requirements contradict the APA’s Ethics Code (Plante, 2011). Confidentiality agreement exceptions between patient and therapist include danger that is immediate (suicide, homicide, or any type of abuse). When the Code of Ethics and the law cross the Code of Ethics should always be followed and any discrepancies should be explained to a court of law (Plante, 2011). There are, however, exceptions to the confidentiality rule: in specific situations, a patient may opt out of confidentiality. This may be when a patient wants to involve their spouse, child, or even a friend in their therapy (Plante, 2011). Clinical psychologists must be careful by documenting exceptions in writing, to maintain integrity because of concerns with confidentiality. Forensic activities are another area where legal issues may affect a psychologist. It is important when psychologists are giving expert testimony that they make sure the assessment tools they choose to use were developed specifically for the purpose the psychologist is using it (Plante, 2011). This is an ethical issue with legal implications rather than a legal issue.

2. What are at least two ethical issues associated with clinical psychology? Provide an example of a situation that could be ethical but illegal. Explain your response. A major point of concern in any ethical discussion in psychology is competence. Appropriate training and instruction that concerns changes in a...