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Continuing Education courses about Ethics

Managing Ethics Challenges in Social Work Organizations: A Comprehensive Strategy (1 credit hour

Program Summary:   This course explores key stages of the evolution of social work ethics from the morality period to the digital period.  Practical tools for managing ethics challenges in social work organizations are provided; strategies include informal ethics conversations, formal ethics consultations, agency-based ethics committees, and ethics rounds.  Case examples are given.

This course is recommended for social workers and is appropriate for beginning and intermediate, levels of practice.  This course is not recommended for NBCC ethics credit.
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Institutional Change and Transgender Employment- Cultural and Ethical Issues (2 credit hours)

Program Summary:   This course discusses transgender employment discrimination, related ethical implications, and why advocacy is needed.  Important legal cases are examined, including the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Bostock v. Clayton County.  The course highlights ethical standards from the NASW Code of Ethics, including engaging in social and political action (macro level); practicing non-discriminatory practices (mezzo level); and promoting the well-being of clients (micro level).   The course provides an overview of what it means to be transgender with guidance on how to be a good ally.

This course is recommended for social workers and is appropriate for beginning and intermediate, levels of practice.  This course is not recommended for NBCC ethics credit.

Participants who complete this course will receive 2 continuing education clock hours. 1 of these clock hours is Ethics and 1 of these clock hours is Social and Cultural Competence.

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Understanding Culture and the Mistreatment of Elders (2 credit hours)

Program Summary:  This updated course explores the mistreatment of African American, Latinx, and AAPI elders.  Research briefs examine how different cultures perceive elder mistreatment and how they seek help.  Cultural beliefs, views, and norms are highlighted, along with research findings.  The course identifies, risk factors, protective factors, and proposed interventions.

This course is recommended for social workers and is appropriate for beginning and intermediate, levels of practice.  This course is not recommended for NBCC ethics credit.

Participants who complete this course will receive 2 continuing education clock hours. 1 of these clock hours is Ethics and 1 of these clock hours is Social and Cultural Competence.

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Violence in Medicine: Necessary and Unnecessary, Intentional and Unintentional- An Ethics Course (1 credit hour)

Program Summary:  This course explores the concept of violence in medicine and healthcare.  Examples may include violence to the body (cancer treatments, dissection, surgery), structural violence (under-resourced patients), violence in language (illness is war, fight), or demeaning interactions (patient is non-compliant).  The course examines how the construct of medicine as savior affects the ethical principles of beneficence, autonomy, informed consent, decision-making, futility, and dignity.  Alternative metaphors for treatment are offered.

This course is recommended for medical social workers and is appropriate for beginning and intermediate levels of practice.  This course is not recommended for NBCC ethics credit.

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Responding to Covid-19: New Trends in Social Workers Use of Information and Communication Technology (1 credit hour)

Program Summary:  This course explores the impact of ICT use on clinical practice during the Covid-19 pandemic and its affect on social work core values, including client well-being, confidentiality, privacy, boundaries, and advocacy.  The ICT expansion importantly allowed social workers to continue their therapeutic relationships with clients when it would not have been possible otherwise.  Many clients responded well to the increased flexibility and creativity offered by ICT.  Other clients experienced critical barriers, such as lack of internet access and poor internet literacy.  Ethical dilemmas were experienced and examples are given.

This course is recommended for social workers and is appropriate for beginning and intermediate levels of practice.  This course is not recommended for NBCC ethics credit.

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Political Advocacy Without a Choice: Highlighting African American Political Social Workers (2 credit hours)

Participants who complete this course will receive 2 continuing education clock hours. 1 of these clock hours is Ethics and 1 of these clock hours is Social and Cultural Competence.

Program Summary:   This course highlights the political action and leadership of early African American social workers and their work challenging discrimination and injustice while advocating for systemic change.  Authors Donisha Shepherd and Suzanne Pritzer offer a social work history that moves beyond Jane Addams’ Hull House and includes the important and sometimes overlooked contributions of social workers like Ida B. Wells-Barnett, Victoria Earle Matthews, Thyra Edwards, Lester Blackwell Granger, and more.  The course uses Lane and Pritzker’s five domains of political social work practice as a framework for understanding the different domains of political advocacy.  The course also includes the NASW 2021 Blueprint of Federal and Social Policy Priorities, which outlines current policy priorities and solutions for national leaders.  Priorities such as high quality healthcare for all, ending homelessness, eliminating racism, reforming immigration policy, and advancing political justice are given.

This course is recommended for social workers and is appropriate for beginning and intermediate levels of practice.  This course is not recommended for NBCC ethics credit.

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Guardianship and Advocacy: Exploring the Ethical Principles of Autonomy, Self-Determination, Decision-Making, Well-Being, and Non-Malfeasance (2 credit hours)

Program Summary:   This course explores the legal process of guardianship and the ethical principles of advocacy, autonomy, self-determination, decision-making, and non-malfeasance.  While guardianship serves an important role in protecting individuals from harm, it also limits fundamental rights as decision-making is transferred from the individual to the guardian.  For this reason, the appointment of a guardian should always be a last resort and only if a less restrictive option is not achievable.  The course highlights the role of the guardian as advocate, promoting the individual’s rights, wishes, and well-being.  The course also examines how the Covid-19 pandemic resulted in changes to practice, some of which will likely continue as we move forward in a post-pandemic world. NGA Guardianship Standards of Practice and Ethical Principles are featured.

This course is recommended for social workers and is appropriate for beginning and intermediate levels of practice.  This course is not recommended for NBCC ethics credit.

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An Ethical Analysis of the Mitigation Measures, Restrictions, and Social Isolation of Long Term Care Residents during the Covid-19 Pandemic (1 credit hour)

Program Summary:  This course offers an ethical analysis of the mitigation measures, restrictions, and social isolation of long term care residents during the Covid-19 pandemic.  The course explores concepts of harm, proportionality, reciprocity, and transparency.  Ethical principles of autonomy, beneficence, maleficence, and justice are examined.  The reading also includes surveys of long term care family members measuring the impact of restrictions on their relatives’ physical and mental conditions.

This course is recommended for social workers and is appropriate for beginning and intermediate levels of practice.  This course is not recommended for NBCC ethics credit.

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Pandemic Ethics: Rethinking Rights, Responsibilities and Roles in Social Work (1 credit hour)

Program Summary: This course explores the ethical challenges experienced by social workers during the Covid-19 pandemic and offers a framework for understanding ethics during a time of crisis. Four broad responses to ethical challenges were identified and include ethical confusion, ethical distress, ethical creativity, and ethical learning. The course highlights the efforts of social workers to practice ethically during this time of change and introduces concepts of ethical agency, slow ethics, and professional judgement.

This course is recommended for social workers and is appropriate for beginning and intermediate levels of practice.  This course is not recommended for NBCC ethics credit.

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Mandated Reporting of Abuse of Older Adults and Adults with Disabilities; Working with Adult Protective Services (2 credit hours)

Program Summary:  This course explores the advantages and disadvantages of mandated reporting for suspected abuse, neglect, or exploitation of older adults and adults with disabilities. It examines the reporting requirements for mandated reporters and the role of APS programs.  Important ethical principles are discussed and include self-determination, confidentiality, well-being, informed consent, the right to refuse interventions, the right to the least intrusive interventions, and the commitment to do no harm.

This course is recommended for social workers and it is appropriate for beginning and intermediate levels of practice.  This course does not qualify for NBCC ethics credit.

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Civil Commitment and the Mental Health Care Continuum: Historical Trends and Principles for Law and Practice (2 credit hours)

Program Summary:  This course examines involuntary civil commitment in the US and includes a history of civil commitment and the evolving standards for civil commitment. Four ethical principles are examined:  respect for autonomy, maleficence, beneficence. and justice.  Ethical arguments and counterarguments are given (e.g. civil commitment limits autonomy vs civil commitment restores autonomy for the longer term.)  Key legislation is explained and concepts of parens patriae, dangerousness, grave disability, and serious deterioration are discussed.

This course is recommended for social workers and is appropriate for beginning and intermediate levels of practice.  This course does not qualify for NBCC ethics credit. Read the complete description of this course…..


A Practical Guide to Psychiatric Advance Directives (2 credit hours)

Program Summary:  This course examines the history of advance directives (including the Nancy Cruzan case and the Patient Self-Determination Act of 1990) along with current research about psychiatric advance directives (PADs) and their benefits, barriers, and challenges.  Shared-decision making, decision supports, and decision aids are explored as important tools for supporting autonomy.  The ethical principles of informed consent, autonomy, beneficence, and justice are highlighted.   The course offers practical guidance for completing and implementing PADs.  Samples and resources on PADs are given.

This course is recommended for social workers and is appropriate for beginning and intermediate levels of practice.  This course is not recommended for NBCC ethics credit. Read the complete description of this course…..


Last Days of Life (PDQ) (2 credit hours)

Program Summary:  This course explores care considerations for the last days of life and includes a discussion of forgoing potentially life saving treatments, withdrawing care, palliative sedation, requests for a hastened death, and no further escalation of care.    Ethical principles and dilemmas are identified including patient autonomy, clinician perceived futility, and the principle of double effect.  This course is intended as a resource to help clinicians provide the highest quality end of life care.  Grief, bereavement, and challenges to the professional caregiver are also explored.

This course is recommended for social workers and appropriate for beginning and intermediate levels of practice.  This course is not recommended for NBCC ethics credit. Read the complete description of this course…..


The ACA Code of Ethics (2 credit hours)

Program Summary:  This course reviews The American Counseling Association’s Code of Ethics.  The ACA Code of Ethics presents ethical obligations, considerations, and responsibilities of ACA members.  It is a guide and resource for ethical practice in counseling.

This course is recommended for counselors and therapists and is appropriate for beginning, intermediate, and advanced levels of practice.  This course is not recommended for social workers. Read the complete description of this course…..


Summary of the HIPAA Privacy Rule (2 credit hours)

Program Summary:  This course examines the HIPAA Privacy Rule and offers a summary of its key provisions.  The Rule establishes national standards for the protection of individual health information.

This course is recommended for social workers and is appropriate for beginning, intermediate, and advanced levels of practice. This course does not meet the ethics requirement for National Certified Counselors.

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National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC) Code of Ethics (1 Credit Hour)

Program Summary:  The NBCC Code of Ethics establishes minimum ethical behaviors for National Certified Counselors.  It is a guide and resource for ethical practice in counseling.

This course is recommended for National Certified Counselors and is appropriate for all levels of practice. Read the complete description of this course…..


NASW Code of Ethics (1 Credit Hour)

Program summary: The NASW Code of Ethics, updated in 2021, sets forth basic values, ethical principles, and ethical standards to be used as a guide for social workers’ conduct and practice.

This course is recommended for social workers and is appropriate for beginning, intermediate, and advanced levels of practice.  This course does not meet continuing education requirements for National Certified Counselors.

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