Let’s Not Get Sloppy When It Comes To Confidentiality
After teaching this weekend, my mind has turned to confidentiality. We teach ethics on the first module of the foundation in hypno-psychotherapy course, and discussions around confidentiality always generate a lively discussion. I got to thinking, I am noticing more and more practitioners talking about clients on social media. These discussions usually have to do with the proud feelings the therapist has because the client is improving. However, one must never underestimate the fact that people can often be identified by others by looking at their issues.
What I mean here is that if Client A had a condition that his friends knew about and then saw a local practitioner writing about just such a person, this would be an ethical issue. Clients are never meant to be identified by their therapists, if research is being done, then the client must give written consent that they are happy for their case details to be part of the research.
Now I do not believe that practitioners who do this are bad, wrong and evil. I do believe that they have gotten sloppy when it comes to confidentiality. Confidentiality is the cornerstone of good therapy, let’s give it the respect it deserves.