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Ethical Issues. Carolyn R. Fallahi, Ph. D. Laws: All U.S. states have laws regulating contact between psychologists and their patients. Prohibiting sexual contact Regulating confidentiality Regulation from the federal government License. Ethical treatment of children.

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Ethical Issues

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Ethical issues

Ethical Issues

Carolyn R. Fallahi, Ph. D.


Ethical treatment of children

  • Laws: All U.S. states have laws regulating contact between psychologists and their patients.

    • Prohibiting sexual contact

    • Regulating confidentiality

    • Regulation from the federal government

    • License

Ethical treatment of children


Professional organizations

  • Many professional organizations have ethical guidelines and if you are a member of those organizations, you are expected to follow them.

    • APA

Professional organizations


Ethics

  • Ethics: a system of morals of a person or group (morals = distinguishing between right and wrong).

  • Ethical behavior: behavior that conforms to moral or professional standards of conduct.

  • Ethical standards: laws, rules, or guidelines designed to ensure ethical behavior.

  • The role of culture.

Ethics


Ethical behavior

  • Case study 1: The case of a female grade school student.

  • Case study 2: clinical trials of a new medication.

Ethical behavior


Our sad history of doing research on children

  • In the 1800s, several studies involving institutionalized children.

  • In 1896, a study was published in which 29 healthy children were each given a spinal tap to see if this could be done safely.

  • Tuskegee Study

  • Willowbrook School issue

  • The movement towards providing ethical interactions with children.

Our sad history of doing research on children


Principles for the ethical treatment of people involved in research or therapy

  • Several overriding principles form the foundation for the ethical treatment of those involved in research and therapy.

Principles for the ethical treatment of people involved in research or therapy.


Autonomy

  • Autonomy: an individual’s right to self determination – to act as he/she sees fit if these actions do not infringe on the rights of others.

Autonomy


Basic issues informed consent

  • Informed consent: a person or a person’s representative must give informed consent before participating in research or therapy.

  • Three conditions must be met.

Basic Issues: Informed Consent


Inducements

  • Is it ethical to provide inducements to get participants in a research study?

Inducements


Research

  • What is required to allow children and adolescents to participate in research?

  • What if a child doesn’t want to participate?

  • Is there ever a time when we don’t need IRB approval to conduct research on children?

Research


Therapy

  • Can children or adolescents participate in therapy without parental permission?

  • Do we need to get their assent?

  • Commitment issues with children.

  • Parham v. J. R. (1979)

Therapy


Beneficence and nonmaleficence

  • Beneficence: expectation that research and therapy will provide some benefit to those who participate.

  • Nonmaleficence: expectation that no harm will be done to a participant in research or therapy or that any harm will be minimized.

  • What if the risks are more than minimal?

  • In therapy with a family, who receives the benefit?

Beneficence and Nonmaleficence


Confidentiality

  • Confidentiality: conversations between a patient and therapist remain confidential – they are not revealed to anyone without the patient’s permission. This is seen as the cornerstone of therapy.

  • Exceptions: suicide, homicide, child maltreatment (physical/sexual abuse)

  • Do children have the same rights as adults?

Confidentiality


Institutional review board

  • The IRB

    • Scientists familiar with research

    • Lawyers

Institutional Review Board


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