Step 1. Identify the situation that requires ethical
consideration and decision making.
Step 2. Anticipate who will be affected by your decision.
Step 3. Figure out who, if anyone, is the client.
Step 4. Assess your relevant areas of competence?and of
missing knowledge, skills, experience, or expertise?in regard to the relevant aspects of this situation.
Step 5. Review relevant formal ethical standards.
Step 6.Review relevant legal standards.
Step 7.Review the relevant research and theory.
Step 8. Consider how, if at all, your personal feelings, biases, or self-interest might affect your ethical judgment and reasoning.
Step 9. Consider what effects, if any, that social, cultural, religious, or similar factors may have on the situation and on identifying ethical responses.
Step 10. Consider consultation.
Step 11.Develop alternative courses of action.
Step 12.Evaluate the alternative courses of action.
Step 13.Try to adopt the perspective of each person who will be affected.
Step 14.Decide what to do, and then review or reconsider it.
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Ethical Dilemma Decision-Making in Professional Psychology
This is about eating disorder symptoms: What if this a scenario as a professional psychologist facing a difficult ethical dilemma. As you personally have some unresolved eating disorder symptoms, can you ethically provide therapy to a client suffering from an eating disorder until you have successfully treated your own?
Firstly, it appears that a psychologist can ethically provide therapy to a client suffering from an eating disorder regardless of whether or not they've had one since the disease may be triggered by other factors, and treatment approaches are different for everyone. However, it would be better if the therapist had their own condition under control. In fact, a therapist who had a condition similar to a client's may have more solutions than one who isn't familiar with the "experience." In other words, one may have more tools and resources; knowing what may work or what is more likely to fail. For ethical decision-making:
Step 1. Identify the situation that requires ethical consideration and decision making.
What is the actual situation involved or what does the client specifically desire help with? Can the therapist actually provide treatment? Does s/he have training, resources, and information that may be passed on to assist the client for successful treatment. The APA Ethics Code prohibits psychologists in all fields from providing services, teaching, or conducting research in areas in which they have not had appropriate training (Standard 2.01). The idea behind this is "psychologists can only benefit another if they have specific knowledge and skills to address the work challenge." So, distinction must be made between ethical, legal, moral, and professional perspectives to determine if the therapist should treat a particular client for their situation or condition.
"A Practitioner's Guide to Ethical Decision Making" Miller & Davis incorporates the work of Van Hoose and Paradise (1979), Kitchener (1984), Stadler (1986), Haas and Malouf (1989), Forester-Miller and Rubenstein (1992), and Sileo and Kopala (1993). For identifying the situation they suggest to, "Gather as much info as possible; write everything out on paper, outlining facts, innuendos, assumptions, hypotheses, or suspicions. Is there an ethical, legal, professional, or clinical problem? Is it a combination of more than one of these?"
Reference: A Practitioner's Guide to Ethical Decision Making
Step 2. Anticipate who will be affected by your decision:
Besides the client, there are a number of people that may be affected by the therapist's decision, including, but not limited to relatives (spouse, children, or other extended family), the employer, and strangers (depending on the case). Sternberg, et al (p.276) reference that a therapist must first "consider their client's state of mind and potential perspectives on any decision(s) that would be made; and who else may be affected - those involved are referred to as STAKEHOLDERS."
Reference: Sternberg, et al "Critical Thinking in Psychology" ...
Various eating disorder symptoms are noted.