Wednesday, November 1, 2017

PRB of Psychology Resolution No. 11 Series of 2017

Professional Regulatory Board of Psychology
Resolution No. 11
Series of 2017

Adoption and Promulgation of the Code of Ethics and Professional Standards for Psychology Practitioners in the Philippines

WHEREAS, Section 7 of Republic Act No.10029 also known as the Philippine Psychology Act of 2009 mandates the Professional Regulatory Board of Psychology (Board) to monitor the conditions and circumstances affecting the practice of Psychology and Psychometrics in the Philippines and to adopt such measures as may be deemed lawful and proper for the enhancement and maintenance of high professional,  ethical and technical standards of the profession;

WHEREAS, Section 32 of the same law provides that the Board shall adopt and promulgate the Code of Ethics and Professional Standards for the Psychology Practitioners that is prescribed and issued by the Accredited Integrated Professional Organization (AIPO) for the Psychology and Psychometrics profession;

WHEREAS, Section 26 thereof further states that the Board shall have the power, after notice and hearing, to suspend  or revoke the Certificate of Registration and Professional Identification Card or to cancel the Special/Temporary Permit granted pursuant to the law on any of the grounds therein set forth, including violations or conspiracy to violate any of the provisions of RA No.10029, its implementing rules and regulations, Code of Ethics and Professional Standards promulgated by the Board.

WHEREAS, the Code of Ethics and Professional Standards shall set forth the ethical and technical principles that shall govern the practice of all Psychologists and Psychometricians in the Philippines;

WHEREAS, as early as 2008, the Psychological Association of the Philippines (PAP) has already  adopted a Code of Ethics and Professional Standards for the Psychology Practitioners in the Philippines, which document underwent thorough stakeholders' review on December 2015;

WHEREAS, the Code of Ethics and Professional Standards for  Psychology Practitioners was endorsed to the Board and the Commission for adoption and promulgation;

WHEREFORE, the Board hereby RESOLVES, as it is so RESOLVED to adopt and promulgate the Code of Ethics and Professional Standards for the Psychology Practitioners in the Philippines, as part of the rules and regulations governing the practice of the Psychology profession in the country, and which copy is hereto appended as Annex A of this Resolution;

This Resolution, including its Annex, shall take effect after fifteen (15) days following its full and complete publication in the Official Gazette or in any newspaper of national circulation.

Let copies hereof be furnished the U.P. Law Center, the Philippine Psychological Association (PAP) and other Psychology professional organizations for information and wider circulation.

Done in the City of Manila this 24th day of August 2017.


Miriam P. Cue

Alexa P. Abrenica

Imelda Virginia G. Villar

Attested by:

Atty. Lovelika T. Bautista
OIC, Secretary's Office of the Professional Regurds

Approved by:

Teofilo S. Pilando,Jr.

Angeline T. Chua Chiaco

Yolanda D. Reyes



The Psychological Association of the Philippines (PAP) adopted a Code of Ethics for the Philippines in 2008. On December 2015,  upon the request of the Professional Regulatory Board of Psychology (Board), a review of this Code was undertaken. This review was attended  by the PAP  Board of Directors and Division Chairs as well as the Professional Regulatory Board of Psychology (Board) Chairperson and Members for the purpose of updating the Code in order to reflect advancements/changes in the field of Psychology, such as the administration of the licensure examinations and the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Core Competencies of Psychology.

The code presents the principles and standards that shall govern the norms of conduct and ethics of all registered Psychologists and Psychometricians in the Philippines. For purposes of this Code, the term "Psychology Practitioners" shall be used to refer to all registered and licensed Psychologists and Psychometricians in the Philippines.

Both PAP and the Board shall take steps to ensure that all Psychology practitioners will know, understand and be properly guided by this Code. As such, the PAP and the Board shall encourage continuous discussions on the Code or any of its specific provisions, with the goal of making the Code a priority concern among all Psychology practitioners. Mindful of the fact that the Code can never completely address all the possible emergent ethical concerns, the PAP and the Board shall nonetheless encourage all Psychology practitioners to study the Code and make recommendations for its continuous improvement. Any suggestions for the amendments, repeal of certain provisions of this Code shall be submitted in writing, with supporting arguments and explanations, to the PAP Scientific and Ethics Committee and/or the Board. The PAP and the Board commit to regularly review the Code and to adopt changes or amendments thereto whenever necessary.


Psychology Practitioners in the Philippines adhere to the following Universal Declaration of Ethical Principles for Psychologists that was adopted unanimously by the General Assembly of the International Union of Psychological Science in Berlin on July 22, 2008 and by the Board of Directors of the International Association of Applied Psychology in Berlin on July 26, 2008.

(Please refer to the embedded file for the following sections :)


PRINCIPLE I - Respect for the Dignity of Persons and Peoples

PRINCIPLE II - Competent Caring for the Well-Being of  Persons and Peoples
PRINCIPLE IV - Professional and Scientific Responsibilities to Society

(Note: he text below on General Ethical Standards and Procedures were largely lifted from the Psychological Association of the Philippines with some editing and revisions.)


The following general ethical standards and procedures describe various aspects of the professional and scholarly activities of Psychology practitioners:

I. Resolving Ethical Issues  
II. Standards of Professional Competence
III. Human Relations
IV. Confidentiality
V.  Advertisement and Public Statements
VI. Records and Fees


A. Misuse of Works
In instances where misuse or misrepresentation of our work comes to our attention, Psychology practitioners   take appropriate and reasonable steps to correct or minimize effects of such misuse or

B. Conflicts between Ethics and Law, Regulations or other Governing Legal Authority
In instances where the Code of Ethics conflicts with the law, regulations of governing legal
authority, Psychology practitioners  shall take appropriate actions to resolve the conflict.
However, if the conflicts cannot be resolved by such means, they must adhere to the law, rules and regulations or governing legal authority.

C. Conflicts between Ethics and Organizational Demands
In instances where this Code of Ethics conflicts with organizational demands, Psychology practitioners  shall endeavor to make this  Code of Ethics known to the organization. Psychology practitioners   shall declare their commitment and adherence to this Code when resolving the conflicts.

D. Action on  Ethical Violations
a. If an action is  likely to cause harm to a person or organization, Psychology practitioners shall take further action to report violation to the appropriate institutional authorities.
b. Complaints against any Psychology practitioner maybe lodged with the Board and the Commission.

E. Cooperating with Ethics Committee
Psychology practitioners   cooperate with the ethics investigation and  proceedings conducted by the Board and/or the Psychological Association/s  to which they belong .

F. Improper Complaints
Psychology practitioners   refrain from filing baseless, frivolous or malicious ethical complaints.

H. Unfair Discrimination Against Complainants and Respondents
Psychology practitioners shall not discriminate against complainants and respondents in any ethical complaint.

(Note: Letter G was omitted in the sequence, in the original PAP version,  an item D. Informal Resolution of Ethical Violations was deleted in this version of Resolution 11 Annex A).


A. Boundaries of Competence
a. Psychology practitioners   shall provide services, teach, and conduct research only within the boundaries of their competences, based on their education, training, supervised internship, consultation, study or professional experience.
b. Psychology practitioners   shall make appropriate referrals, except as provided in Standard A.2, on Providing Services in Emergencies, where their existing competences are not sufficient to ensure
effective implementation or provision of their   services.
c. When Psychology practitioners   plan to provide services, teach, or conduct research involving populations, areas, techniques, or technologies that are new to them and/or are beyond their existing
competences, they must undertake relevant education, training, supervised experience,
consultation, or thorough study.
d. As not to deprive individuals or groups of necessary services, Psychology practitioners may provide the service for which they do not have existing competences as long as they
  1. have closely related prior training or experience, and
  2. make a reasonable effort to obtain the competences required by undergoing relevant research, training, consultation, or thorough study.
e. In those emerging areas in which generally recognized standards for preparatory training
do not yet exist, but in which Psychology practitioners   are required or requested to make available their   services, they  shall take reasonable steps to ensure the competence in the work and to protect their  clients/patients, students, supervisees, research participants, organizational clients, and
others from harm.
f. Psychology practitioners   shall be reasonably familiar with the relevant judicial or administrative rules when assuming forensic roles.

B. Providing Services in Emergencies
Psychology practitioners   shall make available their   services in emergency situations to individuals when the necessary mental health services are not available even if they lack the training appropriate to the case, to ensure these individuals are not deprived of the emergency services they require at that
point in time. However, they shall immediately discontinue said services as soon as the emergency has ended and that appropriate competent are already available.

C. Maintaining Competence
Psychology practitioners   shall undertake continuing education and training to ensure that their  services continue to be relevant and applicable.

D. Bases for Scientific and Professional Judgments
Psychology practitioners   shall base their   work on established scientific and professional knowledge of the discipline. (See also Standards II.A (e), Boundaries of Competence; VIII.B.(a), Informed Consent to Therapy; V.A, Avoiding of False Deceptive Statements; V.C, Workshops, Seminars, and Non-Degree-Granting Educational Programs; VII. E, Interpreting Assessment Results; VII.G,
Explaining Assessment Results; VIII.F, Competent Practice; IX.C, Accuracy in Teaching)

E. Delegation of Work to Others
In cases where Psychology practitioners have to delegate work to employees, supervisees, or research or teaching assistants or when using the services of others, such as interpreters, they shall take reasonable steps to:
a. avoid delegating such work to persons who have a multiple relationship with those being
served that would likely lead to exploitation or loss of objectivity;
b. delegate or assign only those responsibilities that such persons can be expected to perform
competently on the basis of their education, training, or experience, either independently
or with the level of supervision being provided; and

c. see that such persons perform these services competently. (See also Standards II.B, Providing Services in Emergencies; III.E, Multiple Relationships; IV.A, Maintaining Confidentiality; VII.A, Bases for Assessments; , VII.C, Use of Assessment Tools; VII.B, Informed Consent in Assessments; VII.I, Assessment by Unqualified Persons; and X.F, Offering Inducements for Research Participation)

F. Personal Problems and Conflicts
a. Psychology practitioners   shall refrain from initiating an activity when they know or anticipate that there is a substantial likelihood that their personal problems or schedules will prevent them from performing such activities in a competent or sustained manner.
b. When the Psychology practitioners shall become aware of personal problems that may interfere with the performance of work-related duties, they shall take appropriate measures, such as obtaining professional consultation or assistance, making referrals and determine whether they should limit, suspend, or terminate these work-related duties. (See also Standard 10.10, Terminating Therapy.)


A. Unfair Discrimination
In work-related activities, Psychology practitioners   shall not discriminate against persons based on age, gender, gender identity, race, ethnicity, culture, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, disability, socioeconomic status, or for any basis contrary to what is prescribed by law.

B. Sexual Harassment
Psychology practitioners shall not engage in sexual harassment as defined in the Philippine Anti-Sexual Harassment Act (RA No. 7877).

C. Other Harassments
Psychology practitioners   shall not knowingly harass or demean persons with whom they  interact in their   work on the account of age, sex, gender identity, race, ethnicity, culture, national origin,
religion, sexual orientation, disability, language, or socioeconomic status.

D. Avoiding Harm
Psychology practitioners   shall take reasonable steps to avoid harming their   clients/patients, students, supervisees, research participants, organizational clients, and others with whom they  work with and to minimize harm where it is foreseeable but unavoidable.

E. Multiple Relationships
a. Psychology practitioners   shall refrain from entering into a multiple relationship if such could reasonably be expected to impair their   objectivity, competence, or effectiveness in performing their functions as such, or if such relationship will likely result to exploitation or harm to the person with whom their   professional relationship exists. The multiple relationship occurs when a Psychology practitioner is in a professional role with a person and at the same time (1) is in another role with the same person; or (2) is in a relationship with a person closely associated with or related to the person with whom the Psychology practitioner  has professional relationship; or (3) is likely to enter into a future relationship with that client/patient. If however, the Psychology practitioners   shall find that, due to unforeseen factors, a potentially harmful multiple relationship has arisen, they shall take reasonable steps to resolve it with due regard to the best interests of the affected person and adherence of this Code.
b. When Psychology practitioners   shall be required by law, institutional policy, or extraordinary circumstances to serve in more than one (1) role in judicial or administrative proceedings,  they shall endeavor to inform the authorities about their Code of  Ethics, to clarify role expectations and extent of confidentiality and update them as changes occur. (See also Standards III.D, Avoiding Harm, and III.G, Third-Party Requests for Services.)

F. Conflict of Interest
Psychology practitioners   shall refrain from taking on a professional role when personal, scientific, professional, legal, financial, or other interests or relationship could reasonably be expected to (1) impair their   objectivity, competence, or effectiveness in performing their   functions as such; or (2) expose the person or organization with whom they are in a relationship with to exploitation.

G. Third-Party Requests for Services
When Psychology practitioners   agree to provide services to a person or entity at the request of a third party, they shall stipulate at the outset of the service the nature of the relationship with all
individuals or organizations involved. This clarification includes their   expected role (e.g.,
therapist, consultant, diagnostician, or expert witness), an identification of who is the client,
the probable uses of the services provided or the information obtained, and the fact that there
may be limits to confidentiality. (See also Standards II.B, Providing Services in Emergencies;
III.E, Multiple Relationships; IV.B, Limitations of Confidentiality; IV.G, Use of Confidential
Information for Other Purposes; VII.B (c), Informed Consent in Assessment; VII.G,
Explaining Assessment Results; VIII.A,, Confidentiality; X.O, Sharing Research Data for
Verification; and X.P, Reviewers)

H. Exploitative Relationships
Psychology practitioners   shall not exploit persons over whom Psychology practitioners   have supervisory, evaluative, or other authority such as clients/patients, students, supervisees, research participants, and employees. (See also Standards III.E, Multiple Relationships; VI.D, Fees and Financial Arrangements;  Barter with Clients/Patients; IX.G, Sexual Relationships With Students and Supervisees; Sexual Intimacies With Current Therapy Clients/Patients; VIII.D (e), Sexual Intimacies with Relatives or Significant Others of Current Therapy Clients/Patients; VIII.D (f), Therapy With Former Sexual Partners; and VIII.D (f), Sexual Intimacies With Former Therapy  Clients/Patients.)

Unfinished, for updating, to be continued....
(updated - 22 November 2017)

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