There are APA guidelines for the information a psychology professional should have in a record of services. Using critical thinking skills, explain which two standards will be the easiest to follow and which two will be the hardest to follow in maintaining a record. Do you think having a certain role or position in the field of psychology might make some standards more difficult to abide by than others? Why or why not? Support your statements with examples and quotes from the Ethics Code.
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On APA Record Keeping
The American Psychological Association (APA) issued a directive and published their record keeping guideline in 2007 for the purpose of educating psychologists and providing a framework in terms deciding on issues in relation to record-keeping in compliance with state and federal laws as well as APA’s own ethical code. The code since its 2002 amendment has required the maintenance of records they have so far deemed to be ‘appropriate’ of psychological services offered by any practitioner or organization. Records kept will vary dependent on purpose, setting and context/nature of services/help/expertise offered as well as the laws in the locality/state and other ethical and legal considerations that will have an impact on the practice. The APA’s Council of Representatives believes that these guidelines will – “…benefit both the client and the psychologist through documentation of treatment plans, services provided, and client progress…documents the psychologist’s planning and implementation of an appropriate course of services…to monitor his or her work…can also help protect both the client and psychologist in the event of legal or ethical proceedings.”
So are the Guidelines easy or difficult? I have centred on 2 guidelines that are easier to ensure in terms of maintaining and putting in practice and they are as follows (APA, 2007):
“1. Responsibility for records. Psychologists generally have responsibility for the maintenance and retention of their records…A psychologist makes efforts to see that legible and accurate entries are made in client records as soon as is practicable after a service is rendered. Psychologists are urged to organize their records in a manner that facilitates their use by the psychologist and other authorized persons. Psychologists ensure that supervisees, office staff, and billing personnel who handle records are appropriately trained regarding awareness of and compliance with ethical …