Professional Ethics for Digital Age Psychiatry: Boundaries, Privacy, and Communication.

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.

RECENT FINDINGS

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.

Investigators
Abbreviation
Curr Psychiatry Rep
Publication Date
2017-07-23
Volume
19
Issue
9
Page Numbers
55
Pubmed ID
28726059
Medium
Print
Full Title
Professional Ethics for Digital Age Psychiatry: Boundaries, Privacy, and Communication.
Authors
Sabin JE, Harland JC