CODE of ETHICS
All Members of the
National Council of Psychotherapists agree to:-
provide service to
clients solely in those areas in which they are competent to do so and for
which they carry relevant professional indemnity insurance.
remain aware of
their own limitations and wherever appropriate, be prepared to refer a client
to another practitioner (regardless of discipline) who might be expected to
offer suitable treatment.
wherever a client is seeking assistance for the relief of physical symptoms,
unless having already done so, that the client be advised to contact a
registered Medical Practitioner.
confirm that they
will never knowingly offer advice to a client which either conflicts with, or
is contrary to that given, by the client’s registered Medical Advisor/s. (If
they have doubts or concerns with regard to a client’s prescribed medication,
they should, always with their client’s permission, contact the medical
accept that any
client referred to them by a registered Medical Practitioner (or other
relevant agency) remains the clinical responsibility of the Medical
Practitioner (or agency) and thereby agree to keep that Medical Practitioner
(or agency) suitably informed of the client’s progress.
confidentiality within the client/therapist relationship, always provided that
such confidentiality is neither inconsistent with the safety of the client’s
family members nor other members of the public or in contravention of the laws
of the land.
ensure that client
notes and records be kept secure and confidential and that the uses of
computer records remain within the terms of the Data Protection Act.
permission from the client (or if appropriate, the client’s parent/s or legal
guardian/s) before either recording client sessions or discussing undisguised
cases with any person whatsoever. ("Recording" in this context means any
method other than the usual taking of written case notes. "Undisguised" in
this context means cases in which material has not been sufficiently altered
in order to offer reasonable anonymity to all relevant parties).
take all reasonable
steps to ensure the safety of the client and any person who may be
ensure that their
workplace and all facilities offered to both clients and their companions will
be in every respect suitable and appropriate for the service provided.
refrain from using
their position of trust and confidence to:
a) exploit the
client emotionally, sexually, financially or in any other way whatsoever.
Should either a sexual or financial relationship (i.e. other than the payment
of session fees or the purchase of books, tapes or other relevant products)
develop between either therapist and client or members of their respective
immediate families, the therapist must immediately cease to accept fees,
terminate treatment consistent with Clause 12 below and refer the client to
another suitable therapist at the very earliest opportunity. (Clarification on
dilemmas experienced by members in respect of the foregoing may be offered by
the NCP on request).
b) touch the client
in any way that may be open to misinterpretation. (Before employing tactile
hypnotic induction or deepening techniques, both an explanation should be
given and permission received from the client or parent/guardian).
at the earliest moment consistent with the good care of the client.
considerations of religion, nationality, gender, marital status, age,
disability, politics or social standing to adversely influence client
details of all relevant memberships, training, experience, qualifications and
appropriate avenues of complaint to clients, upon request.
Use no claim or
title connected with the National Council or its associated Register of
Critical Incident Debriefers other than that they are members of the National
Council of Psychotherapists or National Council Registered Debriefers with
appropriate designated letters. (N.B. Officers of the Council shall be further
entitled to state the position held by them.)
make no claim that
they hold specific qualifications unless such claim can be fully
substantiated. (In the absence of appropriate medical qualifications, no
Registered Member may utilise the title "Doctor" in a manner that may mislead
any member of the public to believe that they are medically qualified and any
use of this title must be clearly defined by a suitable qualifying statement.)
explain fully to
clients in advance of any treatment, the fee levels, precise terms of payment
and any charges that might be imposed for non-attendance or cancelled
appointments. (Whilst not obligatory, written material is preferable to verbal
statements as this is less likely to give grounds for misunderstanding should
any dispute between client and therapist subsequently develop).
services and products in an unambiguous manner (to include any limitations and
realistic outcomes of treatment and ensure that the client retains complete
control over the decision to purchase such services or products.
at all times in accordance with their professional status and in such a way as
neither undermines public confidence in the process or profession of
psychotherapy/hypnotherapy nor brings the NCP into disrepute.
a) inform the NCP,
in writing, of any complaint (of which they are aware) made against them;
b) inform the NCP,
in writing, of any disciplinary action taken against them by any professional
c) inform the NCP,
in writing, of any criminal offence of which they have been convicted.
inform the NCP, in
writing, of any alteration in circumstance, which would affect either their
position or ability as practitioners.
notify the NCP, in
writing, of any change in practice name, contact address, telephone number or
e-mail address, at the earliest convenient moment.
ensure that all
advertising shall comply with the British Code of Advertising Practice, accord
with the British Advertising Standards Authority and make available all such
literature, to the NCP, on request.
make available all relevant information requested as a result of investigation
by any appointed Complaints and Disciplinary Officer without hindrance
(whether implied or actual) or unreasonable delay and comply fully with all
requirements inherent within any Complaints and Disciplinary Procedure to
which they subscribe.
obtain the consent
of an appropriate adult (i.e. parent or legal guardian) before conducting
treatment with clients who are either under the age of majority or are
classified as Special Needs. (Wherever possible, an appropriate adult should
be present during such sessions).
Accept that this is
not a static document and that it may be altered, from time to time, in
accordance with the need to ensure ongoing professionalism within the fields
of Psychotherapy, Hypnotherapy, Counselling and Critical Incident Debriefing.
For all practical
purposes, a "research subject" should be considered synonymous with a "client"
and consequently, all relevant Clauses within the NCP "Code of Ethics" remain
Of extra importance
is the need on the part of the "researcher" to:
accept that all
participation by "subjects" must be on a completely voluntary basis and that
no "pressure" of any type should be exerted in order to secure participation.
ensure that proper
consent has been obtained prior to the commencement of any research project.
This is especially so in the case of "minors" or Persons with Special Needs.
(N.B. This does not apply where general research of a purely statistical
nature is carried out).
openness and honesty with regard to both the purpose and nature of the
research being conducted.
potential adverse consequences to the "subject" as a result of any intended
relevant, for the ongoing care of participants with regard to any adverse
effects that might arise as a consequence of and within a reasonable time
period after, their involvement within any research project.
REMEMBER -— The
psychological well being of the individual subject is always more important than
the research itself.