Legal and Ethical Issues for Mental Health Professionals
Gregory Lee Baize, Sr.
Video presentation: The video clip was quite interesting I found it to be very educational as to the legal obligations of therapists in the mental health field. There were issues that were brought up that were quite important, such as therapists need to understand confidentiality, privileged information, and a therapists responsibility related to reporting suspected child abuse, elder abuse, and/or suicidal ideations, and possibly the most important of them all is a therapists duty to warn. The first case they were focusing on was the case related to a child that was presented in the ER and seen by Nurse Brown and now because she did not report any suspected child abuse she was charged with a crime. The statement that the character Constance Brandis made was quite succinct; Nurse Brown noted “the child was brought in unconscious and undiagnosed or undetermined distress. She notes bruises, she asked foster mother about them, she gets an explanation, and she buys it. Remember, this is a licensed foster care mother. The boy is treated at the hospital, recovers and then goes home” (Psychotherapy, 2008). After this statement the question that this character had was definitely the appropriate question she said “is Nurse Brown a criminal who might be put in jail was she breaking the law should she be punished”(Psychotherapy, 2008).
There was further in-depth discussion related to the young boy by the name of Dominic and the actions or an action of Nurse Brown. The lady playing the part of the Judge stated “if the law wants to protect Dominic it must still do so constitutionally and Nurse Brown may have a point. She has raised an issue about the constitutionality of the statute” (Psychotherapy, 2008). Here we are told that “Nurse Brown has challenged the constitutionality of the child abuse reporting law by saying that...