Ethics: American Counseling Association Codes


The analyzed video presents a receptionist who informs a patient’s husband that she has come to see her counselor. Under the American Counseling Association (ACA) Codes, it is evident that human services professionals, counselors, and their respective workers should support the confidentiality and safety of their clients. Patients’ information should only be available to third-party members when there is informed consent. The ultimate aim of such a regulation is to maintain the required patient-counselor confidentiality (American Counseling Association, n.d.). After going through the video, the viewer realizes that the counselor’s office failed to live out an ethical experience and commitment. The receptionist violated the expected confidentiality principle by sharing personal information with an authorized individual. Although he was the client’s husband, it was inappropriate to make such a decision since the client was unaware. Counselors and their employees should, therefore, consider the importance of the presented codes of conduct to meet the needs of more individuals and improve the integrity of the profession.

Applicable ACA Codes

ACA Codes are intended to guide and ensure that all counselors remain ethical and make decisions that promote the welfare of their clients. The studied case explores how a receptionist breached the confidentiality principle, thereby undermining the integrity and effectiveness of the counseling process. Several ethics for the ACA are, therefore, applicable to the presented scenario. First, it is agreeable that the employee violated ACA Code B.1.b by revealing the client’s whereabouts to her husband. This rule requires that counselors and their respective teams promote and safeguard the privacy of their clients by all means possible (American Counseling Association, n.d.). Second, the events and outcomes recorded in the case are against ACA Code B.2.e. This provision requires that all counselors and their followers should involve their clients before they could disclose confidential information to other people. Third, the ACA Code A.1.a applies to such a scenario since the counselor’s office failed to respect the client and promote the needed welfare by sharing confidential information. If the receptionist considered the nature and validity of these key ethical principles, such a breach would not have occurred.

Applicable State Codes

Under Florida laws, counselors, social workers, and human services professionals are required to follow the established regulations to protect their clients’ information. Chapter 456 is the primary code that such practitioners should follow. This provision compels counselors to observe confidentiality when acquiring, recording, and sharing clients’ data regarding the intended treatment procedures and progress (Remley & Herlihy, 2016). They should go further to maintain the highest security of the individual while professionally safeguarding the available records. They should use the available resources to protect the patient and ensure that the information remains unavailable to unauthorized parties (Remley & Herlihy, 2016). The state of Florida formulated this law to restrict every social worker and counselor from exposing confidential communication with any individual outside the office and the client (Remley & Herlihy, 2016). This analysis reveals that such provisions are not applied independently in this state. Instead, they are designed in such a way that they expand the available knowledge regarding the importance of ethics in counseling. Professionals in Florida should, therefore, combine Chapter 456 and the ACA Codes of ethics if they want to protect their clients and eventually achieve their goals.


American Counseling Association. (n.d.). 2014 ACA Code of Ethics: As approved by the ACA Governing Council. Web.

Remley, T. P., & Herlihy, B. P. (2016). Ethical, legal, and professional issues in counseling (5th ed.). Pearson.

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"Ethics: American Counseling Association Codes." Premium Papers, 15 Aug. 2023,


Premium Papers. (2023) 'Ethics: American Counseling Association Codes'. 15 August.


Premium Papers. 2023. "Ethics: American Counseling Association Codes." August 15, 2023.

1. Premium Papers. "Ethics: American Counseling Association Codes." August 15, 2023.


Premium Papers. "Ethics: American Counseling Association Codes." August 15, 2023.