Ethical Vignette paper

EthicalVignette paper

Nameof Student


Myarticle will be looking at a summary of a video that scrutinizescounseling activities. The video’s actors are depicting real lifecases that tackle the fields of confidentiality, reporting,privilege, duty to warn as well as reporting. I will also focus on myfindings in statures as well as laws that govern various states. Inthe conclusion part of it, I will give my views, reflections as wellas the applicability of the lessons in the in my counseling career.

Thevideo presentation of the video is very interesting. It offers aplatform for actors to unearth real life issues and get a bettergrasp in the areas of confidentiality, reporting, privileges and theduty to warn. It also draws a thin line that exists between the abovementioned areas that may seem to be very similar and different at thesame time.

Thefirst case to be addressed in the video concerns a boy who is takento hospital by his foster parents. His physical conditions were notgood. He had two bruises on his body, one at the back of his spineand another slightly below the eye. The nurse was barely interestedto know what had transpired. She was told that the injuries were as aresult of the boy being jostled in the car seat. However, she failedto alert the CPS on the possibilities of the boy being undergoing anabuse.

Dayspassed, and the lad went back to the hospital for a second time. Thistime his condition was very serious. He had a head trauma and thusneeded special attention. Despite all the efforts to save his life,he passed on. The nurse was in trouble for the same. She had failedby looking down upon the possible reasons for the diseased firstsuffering, in which she was supposed to give a report to the CPS. Itis very clear that health professionals are given the mandate to makea report of any case that abuses child rights. Failure to make such areporting, these practitioners can be forced to answer crime charges.The nurse was sued, but she decided to protect herself. She arguedthat there was an element of vagueness on the stature that requiredhealth professionals to report child abuses. She considered thesesections of the constitution as being void. The trial charge ruled inher favor. The judge said that the charges seemed too vague. Contraryto her expectations, the high court made a different ruling for thestature was upheld (, 2015).

Thesecond case that followed, the area of confidentiality exceptions wasdelved into. Here there was an officer who had to respond to adomestic dispute after receiving a call. On arrival to the scene, hesaw a man running after a lady from a house. The man was holding aknife, and intended to kill his wife. The officer had to act. Hedecided to fire at the man and shot him dead. Days later, she wasplaced on leave by a protocol. During this period, she did seek helpfrom experts of mental health.

Thevictim’s mother was not at ease and so she decided to seek justice.She made up her mind to file a civil suit for lack of surety onwhether a knife was produced. She also had an interest to see thereport from the expert professional of mental health. She was sodetermined to unearth the whole truth underlying the matter.Unfortunately enough, the office declined her request to produce therecords from the counselor. They said that, if she failed to give theinformation, then he would instruct the jury to make an inferencethat there was nothing like a knife and rule in favor of the victim’smother. The information was not given and the judge ruled in favor ofthe mother. She was awarded $450 000. Later Supreme Court looked intothe issue and made a ruling that psychotherapist client relation wasviewed as privilege and that at any given time the notes should notbe disclosed (, 2015).

Thecase that comes after this was looking into the area of the duty towarn. A mental therapist had the duty to warn a victim on a threatposed by a client. In this case, two people, a lady and a gentlemanwere featured. The two had met during a social event. Later on, thetwo began to hang out and had good relations as friends. The man feltso much attached to the lady something the lady didn’t feel. Aftera certain event, they kissed and the man assumed that they are inlove. The man was so disappointed when the lady turned her down onthe basis that she did feel any love towards him. This put him offand was so much emotionally disturbed. He decided to seek help from atherapist. As he did this, the “lover” was out for something in afar distance. He disclosed to the therapist the plans he had in mindagainst the lady. He had planned to do the worse to her, by killingher. This was because of turning him down despite the fact that theywere so close and she behaved in a manner likely to suggest that shewas in love. The therapist was uncomfortable with this news. Hedecided to raise alarm to the police so that the man would beevaluated. He was arrested for planning murder. However, after awhile, he was released on the basis that he was fit and could nolonger pose a threat to the lady’s life. Surprisingly enough, theman was not barred from committing the homicide as he had planned. Onreturn, the lady was killed by this man. His mission eventuallycompleted.

Thevictim’s family was not happy with the therapist. They decided tosue him on the basis that he had failed to warn the diseased on thedangers posed by his client. He was thus sued and had a case toanswer. The Supreme Court made a ruling that didn’t favor thefamily. It ruled that professionals on mental health are just humanand do not have special abilities to foretell whether an issue beingtackled on a client poses a threat or not. It was therefore evidentthat, the therapist could not carry the burden of the duty to protector even warn (, 2015).


Allclients have a right to confidentiality. The confidentiality is underthe three pillar principles: privilege, autonomy and beneficence.This states, law goes a step higher to provide a stature NCGS 8-53.8,that is the privilege to a counselor (, 2015). Thecounselor has is given the right to protect his clients on matters ofconfidentiality although with a number of limitations. Thelimitations may be in issues of child abuse, elder abuse, dangerthreatening a client, or a court order that require information froma minor. On a more critical analysis and scrutiny the statures ofthis state tend to follow and adhere to the ACA Codes of Ethics(, 2015).


Onmy part, the video has given me a clear picture of how decisions aremade on some critical issues or topics that are very delicate. Somerulings made on some of the cases presented taught me amazinglessons. In the cases, I noted that decisions arrived at did affect arange of people making the great need to deliberate them carefully.Such a move will ensure and guarantee justice to all parties. Toincrease counselors’ awareness, I would recommend counselors towatch this video and they will have a lot to learn from it. This willalso make them critically analyze situations when dealing withclients. I have never gotten a chance to look at any form of legalruling, but my studying of the three sources has given me a wonderfulexposure.

Counselingbeing my profession, I intend to carry out all the lessons I havelearnt from this and put them into practice. I also learnt anothergreat lesson that as a counselor, there is a great need to keepconfidential and private information at any given cost.

References,.(2015). Home.Retrieved 7 April 2015, from,.(2015). Forms| North Carolina Board of Licensed Professional Counselors.Retrieved 7 April 2015, from,.(2015). Law and Ethics for Mental Health Professionals Video.Retrieved 7 April 2015, from