Continuing Education & Resources for Mental Health Professionals

Upcoming Workshops

Peer Consultation – Paying Attention to the Ethical Issues

Fri., May 25, 2018
9:00 am - noon
Charlottesville, VA
3 Credits

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We are advised to maintain professional competence through continuing education and through consultation. Peer consultation can be very important, but there are ethical issues to consider when we obtain or provide peer consultation. Do we clarify the limits of confidentiality when we provide individual consultation to each others?  In our group peer consultation meetings, do members adequately protect the rights of patients by employing strict ethical guidelines about the need for recusal if a presented patient is identifiable to them — perhaps because they share an overlapping case? This workshop will outline some of the ethical considerations that should guide our giving and receiving of needed consultation to each other.

Mary Alice Fisher, Ph.D.
Charlottesville, Virginia  — May 25, 2017
9:00 a.m.  – noon
3 Continuing Education Credits


A.  Ethical Issues in Peer Consultation

  1. Differentiating consultation from supervision or therapy
  2. Asking important questions
  3. Considering important variables:
    What kind of issue is it?
    What type of consultation is it?
    What level of consultation is needed?
  1. Protecting the rights of consultees and their patients
    Confidentiality rights
    Informed consent rights
  1. Monitoring competence
    About content
    About process
  1. “Referring out”
  2. Making ethical decisions about using technology in requesting or providing consultation
    (e.g., email, blog, listserv, etc.)

B.  Asking Ethical Questions About Your Own Peer Group

  1. Is it a “Supervision Group ” or a “Consultation Group”?
  2. Have we conducted an informed consent process for all group members?
  3. Have we explained the confidentiality rules to all group members?
  4. Have we clarified when recusal might be ethically necessary?
  5. Do we monitor compliance with the ethical rules?
  6. Are we alert to any group leadership issues?

 C.  Deciding About Providing Individual Peer Ethics Consultation

  1. Asking oneself some questions before beginning
  2. Choosing an Ethics Consultation Model
  3. Maintaining up-to-date ethical and legal resources
  4. Fostering a “communitarian ethic”


  1. Explain the distinction between supervision and consultation.
  2. Name some ethical issues that must be clarified for participants in a peer consultation group.
  3. Describe some things you should consider when providing individual consultation to peers.
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This workshop offers three (3) Continuing Education (CE) credits in Ethics/Laws.
CE Certificates will be awarded at the completion of workshop attendance.
You may contact your state licensing board to confirm approval for license renewal.

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