Ethical and Legal Issues

  • Baker Act Information

    This site was created to describe current trends in psychiatric hospitals. The patient issues are disscussd in detail including the origins of the mental illness that landed the patient in the hospital along with the tactics many psychiatric institutions use to entice patients to desire to return to the hospital. ("Baker Act" is the name of the law that describes the procedures for involuntary committment to a mental health facility in Florida.)

  • Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct

    The Ethical Standards set forth enforceable rules for conduct as psychologists who are members of the American Psychological Association. Most of the Ethical Standards are written broadly, in order to apply to psychologists in varied roles, although the application of an Ethical Standard may vary depending on the context. The Ethical Standards are not exhaustive. The fact that a given conduct is not specifically addressed by an Ethical Standard does not mean that it is necessarily either ethical or unethical. This Ethics Code applies only to psychologists' activities that are part of their scientific, educational, or professional roles as psychologists.

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  • Legal, Ethical and Professionals Issues in Psychotherapy

    A resource featuring differing viewpoints about the ethical, legal and professional issues in psychoanalysis.

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  • Legal Parameters of Informed Consent Applied to Electroconvulsive Therapy

    Past attempts by policy experts and scholars to synthesize the legal policy considerations behind a general limited right to refuse treatment and specific legislative efforts to regulate the use of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) have met with considerable controversy, confrontation, and misunderstanding. It will be argued on the basis of the following legal analysis that the parameters of the law of informed consent and substituted decisionmaking, as articulated in the leading court decisions and state legislation, provide a reasonable framework upon which to develop sound policy judgments about the right to refuse electroconvulsive therapy.

    The components of the law that form the basis for this conclusion, from the most general to the most specific, are: the decisionmaking rights of mentally disabled persons; the principle of informed consent; the law of substituted consent for mentally incompetent persons; and informed consent as applied to ECT. Together, these interrelated and pyramidal legal concerns provide a framework that defines what the law requires before mentally disabled persons may accept or refuse ECT.

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  • On Being A Scientist: Responsible Conduct In Research

    A free online book about responsible conduct in research. In the past, young scientists learned the ethics of research largely through informal means by working with senior scientists and watching how they dealt with ethical questions. That tradition is still vitally important. But science has become so complex and so closely intertwined with society’s needs that a more formal introduction to research ethics and the responsibilities that these commitments imply is also needed?an introduction that can supplement the informal lessons provided by research supervisors and mentors.

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  • Practice Guidelines for Videoconferencing-Based Telemental Health

    These guidelines are designed to aid in the development and practice of coherent, effective, safe and sustainable telemental health practices. The guidelines focus on two-way, interactive videoconferencing as the modality by which telemental health services are provided. Click here for more information on ATA's Standards and Guidelines.

  • Psychological Harassment Information Association

    Explores the many forms of psychological harassment and the effect it has on its victims. Includes tips on reducing stress and ways to maintain a good life.

  • Stanford Prison Experiment

    This site features an extensive slide show and information about this classic psychology experiment by Philip G. Zimbardo. What happens when you put good people in an evil place? Does humanity win over evil, or does evil triumph? These are some of the questions we posed in this dramatic simulation of prison life conducted in the summer of 1971 at Stanford University.

    How we went about testing these questions and what we found may astound you. Our planned two-week investigation into the psychology of prison life had to be ended prematurely after only six days because of what the situation was doing to the college students who participated. In only a few days, our guards became sadistic and our prisoners became depressed and showed signs of extreme stress. Please join me on a slide tour of describing this experiment and uncovering what it tells us about the nature of Human Nature.

  • Stanford Prison Experiment: Still powerful after all these years

    A followup article about the Stanford Prison Experiment that details some of the effects on participants in the study.