Things To Consider: Ethical Standards for Psychologists; Evidence Based Treatments
Ethical Standards for Registrants of the College of Psychologists of B.C.
The provision of psychological services in British Columbia is regulated by the College of Psychologists, of B.C. The “College” serves to protect the public and to regulate the profession of psychology. For further details go to: www.collegeofpsychologists.bc.ca
Ethical Practice Standards
As a Registered Psychologist, #1612, I am fully licensed to provide Counselling Psychology and Psychotherapy and am required to uphold strict practice standards in my work with clients. I am governed by Ethical Practice Standards that are established by the “College” and written into their Code of Conduct.
Over the span of my 23+ years in this career, I have also acquired and developed my own personal and professional Ethical Standards and values in order to work safely, morally and effectively with a range of clients and issues. My personal-professional values combined with the code of conduct, govern the way I approach situations and work with delicate issues.
A sample of issues governed by the “Code of Conduct” Ethical Practice Standards:
- General Standards for Competency
- Informed Consent
- Maintenance of Records and Security
I am also guided by the Canadian Psychological Association’s Code of Ethics. www.cpa.ca
This association has established moral, ethical, practice standards again to protect individuals from harm and require psychologists to uphold the highest level of standards as determined by four Principles:
- Respect for the Dignity of Persons
- Responsible Caring
- Integrity in Relationships
- Responsibility to Society
Evidence Based Treatments –Discussions
The American Psychological Association or APA offers a Policy Statement on Evidence-based Practice in Psychology. The APA policy statement begins with a definition as follows:
Evidence-based practice in psychology (EBPP) is the integration of the best available research with clinical expertise in the context of patient characteristics, culture, and preferences.
The above link provides a brief summary of the Policy Statement on Evidence Based Practise in Psychology; Best Research Evidence; Clinical Expertise; Patient Characteristics; Clinical Implications and references.
There are many new reports and critiques that have emerged in recent years to address claims made by various proponents of particular psychotherapy approaches. One such review is authored by D. Westen, C. Novotny, H. Thompson-Brenner in the Psychological Bulletin 2004, Vol 130, No.4, 631-663., and entitled “ The Empirical Status of Empirically Supported Psychotherapies: Assumptions, Findings, and Reporting in Controlled Clinical Trials” . This opened up discussion on the problems inherent in research at that time which focussed on the Assumptions of Empircally Supported Therapies and suggested a number of research methodology improvements.
More recently, Johnathan Shedler PhD has written emphatically and specifically about Empirically Based Research in support of Psychoanalytic and Psychodynamic Therapies. Please refer to this excellent article for details on such research in the article entitled: The Efficacy of Psychodynamic Psychotherapy Feb-March 2010, American Psychological Association Vol 65, No 2 98-109.