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Successfully Documenting Mental Health Services for Social Workers and Other Practitioners


Learn the best practices for documenting in social work, including ethical risks, legal risks, and management issues.

Never underestimate the power of documentation. Learn the best practices for documenting in social work and behavioral health, including ethical risks, legal risks, and management issues. This presentation will provide a comprehensive overview of ethical, malpractice, and risk-management issues pertaining to the documentation of services and critical incidents in behavioral health settings. The content will include state-of-the-art guidelines about documentation purposes, content, wording, storage, retention, and access, consistent with prevailing ethical standards. The material will focus on emerging challenges related to electronic health records, including documentation errors, access in integrated health settings, and cybersecurity.



Frederic G. Reamer, Ph.D.

Frederic G. Reamer, Ph.D.

  • Professor in the graduate program of the School of Social Work, Rhode Island College
  • His research and teaching have addressed a wide range of human service issues, including mental health, health care, criminal justice, public welfare, and professional ethics
  • Taught at the University of Chicago, School of Social Service Administration and the University of Missouri-Columbia, School of Social Work
  • Conducted extensive research on professional ethics and has been involved in several national research projects sponsored by the Hastings Center, the Carnegie Corporation, the Haas Foundation, and the Scatter-Good Program for the Applied Ethics of Behavioral Healthcare at the Center for Bioethics, University of Pennsylvania
  • Has published 25 books and more than 180 journal articles, book chapters, and encyclopedia articles
  • Writer of chapters on professional ethics in the Encyclopedia of Social Work, the Encyclopedia of Bioethics, the Encyclopedia of Global Ethics, and the Encyclopedia of Applied Ethics
  • Lectured extensively nationally and internationally on the subjects of professional ethics, professional malpractice, and liability
  • Chaired the national task force that wrote the code of ethics adopted by the National Association of Social Workers
  • Served as a social worker in correctional and mental health settings
  • Ph.D. degree, University of Chicago
  • Can be contacted at [email protected]

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