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Digital Seminar

Ethics: Current Issues and Practical Responses

Allan Barsky, JD, MSW, PhD
6 Hours 19 Minutes
Mar 21, 2016
Product Code:
Media Type:
Digital Seminar
Never expires.


  • Identify ethical issues and pre-empt problems in practice before they arise
  • Conflict resolution strategies to manage ethical dilemmas
  • Manage the ethical risks and benefits of using new and emerging communication technologies in clinical practice
  • Strategies to deal with conflicts of interest and boundary crossings
  • Respond effectively to subpoenas

Tired of the same old information on ethics, errors, and omissions? This course is not a “refresher,” but rather a refreshingly new approach to identifying and managing ethical issues in practice. Resolving ethical issues is not just about knowing your ethical and legal obligations, but also knowing how to deal with clients and colleagues when ethical conflicts arise. Learn an interest-based approach to building consensus with clients and colleagues, as well as managing ethical conflict in a creative win-win manner.

This workshop will provide you with opportunities to practice your new conflict management skills through the use of case examples and experiential learning. Case examples will involve situations related to current issues, including ethical risks of the use of communication technologies, boundary crossings and clients who are involved in court processes. Learn strategies to help you manage your ongoing practice in a manner that reduces ethical risks, as well as strategies for responding to challenges raised by clients, attorneys and professional colleagues.


- PESI Australia, in collaboration with PESI in the USA, offers quality online continuing professional development events from the leaders in the field at a standard recognized by professional associations including psychology, social work, occupational therapy, alcohol and drug professionals, counselling and psychotherapy. On completion of the training, a Professional Development Certificate is issued after the individual has answered and submitted a quiz and course evaluation. This online program is worth 6.25 hours CPD for points calculation by your association.



Allan Barsky, JD, MSW, PhD's Profile

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Florida Atlantic University

Professor of Social Work

Allan Barsky, JD, MSW, PhD, is the past chair of the National Ethics Committee of the National Association of Social Workers and professor with the Florida Atlantic University School of Social Work. Dr. Barsky’s clinical practice includes work in child welfare, intimate partner abuse, family mediation, addiction and forensic social work.

Dr. Barsky was awarded “Creative Scholar of the Year” by Florida Atlantic University. His book credits include Ethics and Values in Social Work (Oxford University Press), Clinicians in Court (Guilford Press), Conflict Resolution for the Helping Professions (Brooks/Cole) and Interprofessional Practice with Diverse Populations (Greenwood).

Dr. Barsky has spoken at many national and international conferences, including those of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts, Association for Practical and Professional Ethics, National Association of Social Workers, International Federation of Social Workers, Family Mediation Canada, Council on Social Work Education, and Association for Conflict Resolution. He has presented workshops and classes in New York, Washington, Los Angeles, Dallas, Toronto, Jerusalem, London, Helsinki and Amsterdam.


Speaker Disclosures
Financial: Allan Barsky has an employment relationship with Florida Atlantic University. He receives a speaking honorarium and recording royalties from PESI, Inc. He receives royalties as a published author. He has no relevant financial relationships with ineligible organizations.
Non-financial: Allan Barsky is a member of the National Association of Social Workers, the Council on Social Work Education, and the Association of Baccalaureate Social Work Program Directors. He is an affiliate of the Peace, Justice and Human Rights Initiative, and he serves on the editorial board for the Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics.

Target Audience

Addiction Counselors, Case Managers; Counselors, Marriage & Family Therapists, Nurses, Psychologists, Social Workers, and other Mental Health Professionals


  • Use a strategic framework to recognize, articulate, analyze and resolve ethical problems and dilemmas that may arise in clinical practice.
  • Identify and manage risk factors that may lead to boundary violations with clients.
  • Apply an interest-based approach to resolve ethical conflicts with clients and co-professionals.
  • Recognize and manage the ethical risks of using communication technologies, including issues related to confidentiality, documentation, boundary crossings, client safety, client exploitation, cross-border services, professional competence and informed consent.
  • Instruct clients in a full and frank discussion of ethical issues pertaining to confidentiality, privilege and subpoenas to court.
  • Respond effectively to attorneys who may request client records or participation of the clinician in court-related processes.


A Process-Oriented Approach to Managing Ethical Issues

  • Early identification
  • Engage clients and others in resolving ethical issues
  • Manage ethical, moral, legal and personal obligations

An Interest-Based Approach to Managing Ethical Issues

  • Focus on interests rather than positions
  • Enhance communication and trust
  • Identify common ground and valid differences
  • Generate options to maximize benefits and mitigate ethical risks
  • Separate the person from the problem
  • Apply objective criteria
  • Obtain commitments

Using Communication Technologies

  • Rationale for using videoconferencing, email, smart phones, online social networking and other communication technologies
  • Identify risks relating to confidentiality, documentation, client safety, maintaining appropriate boundaries and informed consent
  • Manage ethical risks and promote the highest standards of practice

Clinicians in Court

  • Identify situations when clinicians may be called to testify or produce evidence
  • Balance client, clinician and third party interests in confidentiality, privilege, due process, safety and informed consent
  • Respond to client requests, informal attorney requests and subpoenas

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