ETHICS TRAINING through Deb’s BEYOND ETHICS, LLC
Deb is offering 3.0 hours of required Ethics to satisfy your renewal requirements.
“I always train with case examples and lots of humor, and – most importantly – audience participation with difficult situations, clinically and legally. I try to convey the way to protect yourself professionally – acting ethically AND self-protectively are not in conflict.”
2017 Training Schedule: 3.0 hours of Ethics held at East Jefferson General Hospital on Friday, November 3rd from 8:45 a.m. to noon.
In my legal consultations with clinicians, as well as in the various groups to whom I present on high-risk clinical practice, I often get asked questions about practicing within this new age of social media and client mobility. I will present the pertinent rules and regulations governing social media and electronic communication with clients. I will also explore the seduction and risks of both and, along with audience participation and case examples, will analyze how to reduce such risks to protect the therapeutic relationship and guard the clients’ confidentiality. Finally, I will teach participants specific steps for responding to subpoenas that compel the release of clients’ clinical records.
Once you are registered for one of the trainings, you will be invited to send me questions or case examples of sticky situations you or others you know have encountered. Your input will enrich our time together and provide great grist for the training mill. Hope to see you in 2017 at East Jefferson General Hospital Conference Center for my Beyond Ethics, LLC trainings!!
NOTE: If you are not on Deb’s email list for Beyond Ethics, LLC trainings and would like to receive notification (or your friend or colleague isn’t getting this email and wants to sign up), please go to beyond-ethics.com and sign up for Deb’s newsletter and training email notices.
Question/Answer Corner: What’s On Your Mind?
Q: An individual client wants you to see his/her partner in couples session(s) to help with their communication issues. What should you do?
A: Although it is not prohibited, such change in therapy might be considered high risk. What has happened in my experience (when clinicians consult about a problem case) is that the relationship with the individual client sometimes gets in the way of the partner feeling totally comfortable and trusting. Although this may not occur with healthy folks, sometimes you do not know the mental health status of the partner before agreeing to see the couple.
There can also be jealousy with the individual primary client if the therapist points out issues for that person to address. Sometimes it becomes apparent that the individual client wanted his or her therapist to side with him/her and “set the partner straight” in some way. When that does not happen, the primary client can become angry and terminate therapy, sometimes filing a grievance as retaliation. Better to refer the couple to another therapist!
Information regarding Complaints
I have been consulted in the past couple months concerning divorce litigation AGAIN! I wrote about being cautious in the last newsletter, but want to reiterate that such situations can place the therapist in very tenuous places. For example, others may become involved (extended families, collateral professionals, etc.) in the messy divorces and the therapist for the children and/or one of the spouses may end up becoming embroiled in the mess unwittingly.
Best practice is to advise parents (spouses, if marital therapy) that your role is to help the identified client (or the couple) adjust to the divorce – NOT to be used by one party against another party. Discussing this in the beginning may not ensure that you do not receive a subpoena for your records and testimony, but it may help prevent your being dragged through the mud. Maybe not. Legal consultation is always a good thing to help protect yourself.
As I stated in the last newsletter, I am always available for a consultation if you get into muddy waters. And, if a subpoena is issued, many insurance policies cover the expense of legal consultation to help ethically and self-protectively respond to the subpoena.
Transforming Our Relationships with Our Adult Children
I have had the great fortune of spending time with both of my adult offspring, as I now affectionately call them, over the past months. It dawned on me to write this blog about how much these relationships mean to me and to ask readers to write in and share some of your experiences relative to the evolving nature of your roles as parents with your adult kids.
I share with my son (24 years old) and my daughter (20 years old) a great deal of communication, both in frequency and depth. I appreciate and value our talks so much and cannot imagine my life without being close to both of my adult kids.
We discuss relationship issues – theirs and mine. We discuss academic and work concerns and the new aspects of our lives in this regard (all three of us have recently moved to new cities and are in the process of settling in). We encourage each other to grow and seek greater self-awareness as the years progress. We tackle issues that arise between us and with others in our lives. Often, because they know me so well, my son and daughter offer suggestions and insight that give me pause – and help me grow. It is through our continued communication that we keep our relationships strong and rich.
Recent blog posts you might be interested in:
Deb’s Louisiana Law Practice
(1) Case/Clinical/Legal Consultations – can be undertaken via teleconference or in person. Call or email for appointment. Flat fee for up to one hour is charged. I am in New Orleans every month or so to meet with licensees who prefer face-to-face in person consultations, but also can arrange consultations via Skype or video face time (with android phones).
(2) Defense for Licensing Board Complaints – with Social Work, LPC, or Psychology Board. Other health professionals are also represented.
(3) Adoptions – while I do not have an “inventory” of babies, many of my clients have found babies who are available for adoption through friends or relatives. The latter is easier to accomplish because it is an “intrafamily” adoption and much easier to accomplish. Stepparent adoptions are considered “intrafamily” adoptions, too. Private (non-family) adoptions are not extremely expensive, but do require a private Home Study by another social worker and that adds to the cost of that type of adoption. Now that the United States Supreme Court has ruled in favor of same-sex marriage, Louisiana has to recognize the marriage of same-sex couples and I can get a second parent adoption accomplished via the Intrafamily adoption statute in any parish.
What people said about my most recent seminars:
- “This seminar was extremely insightful and Deb’s delivery and presentation was right up my alley!”
- “Enjoy your workshops – always so informative and interesting. Time flies!”
- “I think Deb is a great presenter.”
- “Great info – very knowledgeable and great examples. Great reminders as well as some new nuggets.”
- “Could have listened to you all day! Great info. Lots to think about.”
- “Thank you for the best Ethics presentation I have been to in 25 years of practice. Your recommendations for protecting ourselves and our clients were exceptional! I will come to any presentation you have in the future. Thank you so very much!”
- “I always enjoy your trainings. I appreciate your flexibility in regards to discussing audience members’ concerns/experiences.”
- “My third seminar with you — you are great! Keep on teaching this class…”
- “Always great! Thank you! Wish you had more throughout the year… You are engaging and positive.”
- “Excellent! I could not think of anything to improve on this workshop. Keep doing what you’re doing.”
- “I thoroughly enjoyed your training. The intimate setting allowed for increased participation. I enjoyed the relevant examples/cases. I have been to Ethics seminars where the presenter went through the code of ethics (boring!). You discussed relevant issues that stimulated our interest in a fascinating way.”
- “Excellent presentation. Very informative and well thought out frame work. Thanks Deb!”
- “Nice work! Very interesting, especially when examining specific case studies.”
Legal Services Offered
- Legal Representation & Consultation for grievances (complaints) to licensing boards and/or malpractice lawsuits
- Training & Consultation for Clinicians and Agencies (e.g., respond ethically to subpoenas while protecting yourself and your clients; identify high-risk clients and situations to avoid client disciplinary complaints and harm to clients or third parties)
Deb Henson is an Attorney and LCSW (Tulane School of Social Work, MSW) in private practice in Denver and New Orleans, specializing in mental health licensing defense. She represents clinicians in DORA grievances (CO) and licensing board Complaints (LA) and regularly consults with clinicians in both states to help them deal with legal and clinical conundrums, such as: (1) the receipt of subpoenas for records or testimony; (2) the escalation of high-risk clinical situations; and (3) other sticky ethical wickets that arise in clinical practice. Deb helps clinicians develop self-protective, clinically sound and legally proper strategies for risk prevention.
Deb has been presenting half- and full-day seminars on “Avoiding Ethics Complaints and Malpractice Lawsuits” or “Legal and Ethical Issues in Clinical Practice” around the country through PESI, Inc. for over 7 years and presenting for many CEU groups in Louisiana and Colorado. She also has lectured for Tulane School of Social Work Continuing Education and the University of Texas School of Social Work (Austin) Continuing Professional Development program, and for many other clinical and counseling groups. Deb started her own training biz — Beyond Ethics, LLC — in 2009. Contact Deb for group presentations to agency staff and/or private practice consultation groups.
Deb can be reached through her law and social work web site: www.deborahmhenson.com or through her training web site: www.beyond-ethics.com. Deb can also be emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. And, you can use the old tried and true method of calling her at 504.232.8884.