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Privacy in healthcare is a big deal.  It is essential for healthcare professionals to protect patient information. People do not want others to know their personal information or their medical condition. There is a lot of stigmatization with certain diseases. A good example is HIV and AIDS. In society nowadays, many people have a negative connotation for people suffering from such a condition. Also, there is the issue of status as well. The most influential and celebrities always like to keep their information secret. So, healthcare professionals have to protect the patient’s information.

            HIPAA stands for Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), and the government created it in 1996. Title II of HIPAA requires the health care industry to become more efficient by encouraging electronic media for transmission of certain patient administrative data. Also, to make the public feel more secure with electronic transmission of data, the government developed privacy and security rules to complement the transaction rules ( Browers, 2001). So healthcare professionals are bind by this law to protect patient information and data.

The approach for group or family therapy differs from individual therapy in the sense that with individuals therapy with a patient. Group therapy involves one or more psychologists who lead a group of roughly five to 15 patients. Typically, groups meet for an hour or two each week (Johnson, 2019). A healthcare professional can discuss anything about the patient without fear of disclosing that patient information to people who are not authorized to know. The healthcare professional is able to discuss the patient’s diagnosis, treatment with the patient. Meanwhile, with family or group therapy, the participants have to consent to what they will like to discuss. So the boundaries are of their conversations are well defined.

Legally and ethically it is essential for healthcare providers to participate in group therapy to let all the participants know what they are going to be talking about and the terms and boundaries of their conversation. In group psychotherapy, it is sometimes based on how patients cope with depression and anxiety disorders.

These differences can affect the therapeutic approach because some participants may not want to discuss or express their feeling in a way that if it was just them and a therapist. So some patients may decide to hold back information because of fear of others being judgmental. It can impact the group negatively or positively. It is because patients will be able to share ideas of what they are going through to help each other.  Group therapy allows patients to know that they are not alone in their struggles and facilitates giving and receiving support (Tartakovsky, 2018).


Bowers D. (2001). The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act: is it really all that bad?. Proceedings (Baylor University. Medical Center)14(4), 347–348. https://doi.org/10.1080/08998280.2001.11927786

Johnson, B. (2019, October 30). Psychotherapy: Understanding group therapy. Retrieved September 02, 2020, from https://www.apa.org/topics/group-therapy

Tartakovsky, M. (2018, October 08). 5 Benefits of Group Therapy. Retrieved September 02, 2020, from https://psychcentral.com/lib/5-benefits-of-group-therapy/