Code of Ethics and Practice

(Throughout this Code, the terms ‘Therapist’, ‘Therapists’, ‘Members’, or ‘Membership’ shall be deemed to include both graduate members of the National Register of Hypnotherapists and Psychotherapists as well as persons in training with the National College of Hypnosis and Psychotherapy.  The terms National College and National Register refer to the National College of Hypnosis and Psychotherapy and the National Register of Hypnotherapists and Psychotherapists respectively.)

The National College and National Register recognise the prime importance of encouraging, maintaining and supervising the ethical standards of their therapists.   This is for the protection of both clients and therapists.   To these ends, the following Code of Ethics and Practice applies to all members of the National Register and to all students of the National College, even prior to eligibility for membership of the National Register.

All therapists are expected to approach their work with the specific aims of alleviating suffering and promoting the well-being of their clients.   Therapists should, therefore, endeavour to use those abilities and skills commensurate with their trained competence, to the clients’ best advantage, without prejudice and with due recognition of the value and dignity of every human being.

1. Therapists engaged in the practice of Hypno-Psychotherapy and allied disciplines shall, at all times, conduct their professional lives with the propriety and dignity becoming a servant of the public, and pledge that they will not, under any circumstances, infringe the code of morality becoming their profession, and will not commit any breach of conduct that will adversely reflect upon themselves, the National College and the National Register, or upon their fellow practitioners.

2. Therapists shall confine their services to the recognised spheres of their profession, and shall neither offer nor promise cures for specific conditions, nor engage in any activity likely to bring the profession into disrepute.

3. Therapists are required to disclose their qualifications when requested and not claim, or imply, qualifications that they do not have. Physical evidence of such qualifications should be made available for inspection by any legitimate enquirer.

4. Therapists are required to disclose their terms, conditions and, where appropriate, methods of practice at the outset of therapy. Failure to act thus may be seen as being morally repugnant as well as counter-productive in therapeutic terms.

5. Therapists are required to preserve confidentiality and to disclose, if requested, the limits of confidentiality and circumstances under which it might be broken to specific third parties. It should be borne in mind that therapists have a responsibility to the community at large, as well as to individual clients.

6. Therapists should consider the client's best interest when making appropriate contact with the client's General Practitioner, relevant psychiatric services, or other relevant professionals with the client's knowledge. In seeking advice, as appropriate, and perhaps declining to treat and/or referring, therapists show an awareness of their own limitations whilst acting in the best interest of those seeking their help.

7. Therapists are required to maintain appropriate boundaries with their clients and to take care not to exploit their clients, current or past, in any way, financially, sexually or emotionally.

8. Therapists are required to maintain their ability to perform competently by undergoing personal therapy, if required, and engaging in Continuing Professional Development (CPD), including a commitment to ongoing supervision/peer supervision and other, verifiable, CPD activities.

9. Therapists are required to clarify with clients the nature, purpose and conditions of any research in which the clients are involved and to ensure that informed and verifiable consent is given before commencement. Such consent should allow for a 'cooling-off' period, and may be withdrawn at any time thereafter should any such clients so choose.

10. Therapists are required to safeguard the welfare and anonymity of clients when any form of publication of clinical material is being considered and to obtain their consent whenever possible.

11. The principles underlying the two previous paragraphs shall also be applied should therapists be engaged in the public media of whatever description.

12. A therapist who is convicted in a court of law of any notifiable criminal offence, or who is the subject of any successful civil action by a client, shall immediately report the facts in writing to the Governing Council of the National Register. In any such instance, the individual concerned shall consider him or her self suspended from membership of the National Register and/or student body of the National College, pending decision concerning such membership by the Governing Council of the National Register.

13. Therapists are required to ensure that their professional work is adequately covered by appropriate indemnity insurance. All members of the National Register are required, as a condition of membership, to be accepted for cover within the group policy maintained by the National Register or to provide evidence of equivalent insurance cover; prior to eligibility for membership of the National Register, persons on premises used by the National College for purposes of training, and under the supervision of the National College Tutor, are required to be covered though National College insurance.

14. A Complaints Procedure exists, to receive any complaint against a therapist, to consider the therapist's response and to arrive at a decision based on all the presented facts. Appeals are allowed against any decisions made. The Complaints Procedure is detailed in the National Register's 'Guide to NRHP', and will be made available to any person on request, and to all therapists applying to join the National Register. In the event of a complaint against the institution, i.e., the National College or National Register, a Complaints Procedure has been published and is available upon request.

15. Therapists are required to take appropriate action to make a complaint which will be dealt with in accordance with the Complaints Procedure, with regard to the behaviour of a colleague which may be detrimental to the profession, to colleagues or to other members.

16. Therapists shall not give any performance, lecture or display which presents hypnosis or psychotherapy or allied disciplines as a means of entertainment.

17. The professional notices of therapists shall be kept to a dignified wording and confined to approved publications only, and/or otherwise be brought to public notice in a dignified manner. (The Governing Council of the National Register may, at its discretion, declare an advertisement or publication or method of publicising services to be unacceptable.)

18. Any therapist breaking this Code of Ethics and Practice shall, at the discretion of the Governing Council of the National Register, be liable to forfeiture of membership or other sanction(s) as directed by the Governing Council.

19. The Governing Council of the National Register shall have the power to interpret and enforce compliance with the Code of Ethics and Practice by all therapists, and to impose such sanctions as it sees fit for breaches of the Code. Where dual membership exists, details of therapists who are suspended by, or expelled from, the National Register, are automatically deleted from the United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy's National Register of Psychotherapists.

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