Code of Ethics
The Society for Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis is dedicated to the clinical and scientific utilization of hypnosis at the highest professional level. The history of hypnosis and its use call for some basic principles to maintain high standards for responsible professional workers. In addition, the multidisciplinary character of the professional membership of SCEH requires an explicit statement of the ethical guidelines to which members of SCEH are required to subscribe and adhere.
Section A: Ethical Principles
A member of SCEH shall be a member in good standing of the recognized professional organization in his or her field (e.g., AMA, ADA, APA, NASW, etc.).
I-1. Members not affiliated with the appropriate professional organization may be requested to obtain such membership or to show cause as to why they should not meet this required status.
I-2. Item I-1 requires acceptance of the ethical and scientific standards of a responsible professional organization. It does not imply endorsement by SCEH of particular policies or practices of any particular organization.
Members of SCEH shall limit their clinical and scientific use of hypnosis to the area of their competence as defined by the professional standards of their particular field.
II-1. Professional training, qualifications, and competence, as defined by the member’s professional organization and the member’s own achievements in his or her professional field, shall guide the member’s practices within this area.
II-2. A member who encounters a problem in the use of hypnosis shall seek the help of qualified specialists competent to deal with this problem.
II-2-a. This help may be obtained either by consultation with the specialist, or by referral of the patient to the specialist.
II-3. Members may seek to broaden the usefulness of hypnosis in their professional field in the interest of individual patients as well as in the interests of extending the professional and scientific knowledge of hypnosis.
II-3-a. Such extension of the use of hypnosis must be carried out with all appropriate safeguards as specified in IV.
The clinical and scientific utilization of hypnosis is an important contribution to mankind’s health. It should not be used as a source of entertainment.
III-1. No members of SCEH shall offer their services for the purpose of public entertainment nor shall they collaborate with any person or agency engaged in public entertainment. They shall not cooperate with or participate in lectures, demonstrations or publications of lay or stage hypnotists, and shall not give courses in hypnosis to lay people.
III-1-a. A lay person within the meaning of this code is defined as one who is not a member in good standing of a recognized therapeutic or scientific profession; a person whose sole qualification is in the use of hypnosis for entertainment, treatment or research. Paragraph III-1, therefore, makes it unethical for a member of SCEH to teach hypnosis to anyone other than SCEH members or doctoral level psychologists, physicians (M.D.’s or D.O.’s), dentists (D.D.S.’s or D.M.D.’s), and clinical social workers or psychologists listed in the National Register, with the exception of paramedical groups, i.e. nurses or technicians or students, directly involved with patient care or research and working under direct supervision of a physician, dentist or doctoral level psychologist competent in the use of hypnosis; and with the exception of students taught under the auspices of the International Society of Hypnosis or any of its constituent societies.
III-1-b. Paragraph III-1 shall not apply to the advising and consultative function which a member, acting as a representative of SCEH, shall perform towards the mass media in order to minimize distortions, or misrepresentations, etc., and in order to assure the accurate presentation of clinical and scientific material and knowledge.
III-2. Members, when dealing with the subject of hypnosis in any form, shall observe the professional standards of their own professional society with respect to advertising, promotion and display of their services in addition to the standards as set forth under this code.
III-2-a. No member of SCEH shall offer their professional use of hypnosis via newspapers, radio, television or similar media.
III-2-b. In the announcement of their services to the profession, statements of membership in SCEH, the American Boards of Hypnosis, and similar accredited affiliations, are appropriate when presented with accuracy and dignity along with their other professional credentials.
III-2-c. Members making statements or writing an article for publication in the lay press, or appearing on radio, TV or similar media, shall behave in conformity with the requirements of their professional society and with the provisions of the code of ethics of their society. If in doubt, the Committee on Ethics and Professional Attitudes of SCEH should be consulted beforehand.
III-2-d. Members shall be responsible, within the limits of their possibilities, for statements made by other agencies such as book publishers, drug manufacturing firms, etc., which deal with the members’ creative products (e.g., books, films, publications), and shall use their influence and prestige to avoid exaggerations or false statements about hypnosis.
Members of SCEH shall make clinical and scientific use of hypnosis if it contributes to the welfare of patients and/or to the advancement of professional knowledge in the individual member’s field.
IV-1. The standards of professional relationships which guide physicians, dentists, psychologists or clinical social workers within their professional fields shall prevail in the use of all special therapeutic techniques.
IV-2. Research investigations utilizing hypnosis shall maintain the strongest safeguards for the well-being of the subject.
IV-2-a. Proper safeguards shall be maintained whenever a human subject is exposed to stress. The problem should be of sufficient importance to justify such a procedure and adequate facilities during and after the procedure should be available to assure the well-being of the subject. When there is doubt as to the appropriateness of the stress exposure, members shall consult with one or more colleagues or specialists or with the Committee on Ethics and Professional Attitudes before undertaking the procedure.
Section B: Violation of Ethical Principles
Procedure to be followed:
(1) dismissal of charges because of insufficient evidence or unsubstantiated evidence,
(2) censure of warning,
(3) suspension of member for a period of up to one  year, (4) an order that the member submit a resignation and in the event of failure or refusal to do so, that the member be expelled from SCEH, (5) expulsion of member.
6. The Executive Council shall review the findings and recommendations of the Committee on Ethics and Professional Attitudes and reach a decision.