PURPOSE OF REVIEW
Internet and social media use continue to expand rapidly. Many patients and psychiatrists are bringing digital technologies into the treatment process, but relatively little attention has been paid to the ethical challenges in doing this. This review presents ethical guidelines for psychiatry in the digital age.
Surveys demonstrate that patients are eager to make digital technologies part of their treatment. Substantial numbers search for professional and personal information about their therapists. Attitudes among psychiatrists about using digital technologies with patients range from dread to enthusiastic adoption. Digital technologies create four major ethical challenges for psychiatry: managing clinical boundaries; maintaining privacy and confidentiality; establishing realistic expectations regarding digital communications; and upholding professional ideals. Traditional ethical expectations are valid for the evolving digital arena, but guidance must be adapted for actual application in practice.