Considering Confidentiality

Your original response to the Discussion topic should be at least 300 words and should reflect the fact that you have completed the assigned readings and activities. Use your words wisely so that the posting has substance and includes examples and explanations. Remember to include APA style citations and a reference list.

Considering Confidentiality:

Maintaining confidentiality is essential to the helping relationship. This Assignment will assist you to explore how and why this is so important. After completing your Reading for this week, please respond to the following questions:

  • Using the text, the Internet, and the Library, research the concept of confidentiality. Describe the origins of this responsibility. Do you think it is important to a successful helping relationship? Why or why not?
  • Consider the opinion of the graduate student under the Pause for Reflection section on page 139. Do you agree or disagree with her opinion? Include the reasoning for your response.
  • Assume you are a family preservation worker at your county human services agency working with a family attempting to stay together after a neglect report. When you arrive at the home for an appointment one evening, the 7-year-old daughter pulls you aside and informs you that her parents left her alone while they went out over the weekend, then adds, “…but it was fine. Nothing bad happened.” She then asks you not to tell anyone about this as she does not want to be removed from the home. Do you honor her request? What steps do you take? Discuss the reasoning for your decision.
  • Review the NOHS Ethical Standards for Human Service Professionals. Identify all standards that concern confidentiality. Are they consistent with the information described in the text regarding this responsibility?
  • How would the NOHS standards require you to address the situation described above?
  • What are the legal issues presented by The Case of Don Learning Activity in this unit?

Page 139

Pause for Reflection

Some time ago, a graduate student dared to take a very provocative stance. “Acting like confidentiality is so essential sends the wrong message about human problems and about seeking counseling or other kinds of help,” she said. “Colluding with clients to keep their problems ‘secret’ reinforces the notion that having problems is bad and that clients themselves are to blame. We should help clients be proud that they are seeking help, instead of pretending we don’t even know them in public.” What do you think about her stance? Do you see merit in her argument?

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