The Association of Registered Trichologists (the ART) Code of Ethical Conduct
The ART’s Code of Ethical Practice (‘the Code’) sets out the principles and practice which govern the actions and behaviours of all Members of the ART, whatever their status or grade.
Membership of the ART commits all Members to upholding and maintaining the Code and its underlying principles.
Three equally important principles sit at the heart of the Code:
- The commitment to ensuring the wellbeing, safety and confidentiality of our end clients
- The maintenance of high standards of service and care in the delivery of trichology and related services
- The commitment by all Members to work together to ensure that trichology is regarded as a trustworthy, open and honest profession by the public and media.
The Code expresses these principles in a series of recommended behaviours which set out how the ART expects its Members to behave in their delivery of their professional services.
Members of the ART are expected to report any concerns they have about the behaviour of another Member to the Secretariat of the ART.
The Behaviours that are expected from all ART Members:
- Act in a manner at all times that ensures the safety and health of the client
- Make decisions about care and treatments in partnership with the client
- Respect the confidentiality of the client, and the client’s medical history and personal data, and conform to the data protection principles as set out in the Data Protection Act 1998
- Ensure that anyone who may have access to client information understands and maintains the principles of client confidentiality
- Members must ensure they take responsibility for all consultations and recommendations to clients, and that where activities are undertaken by someone working under the Member’s supervision or delegated by the Member, that person is competent and has undergone, or is undergoing appropriate training
- Maintain professional relationship with clients at all times
- Respect diversity in the values, beliefs and lifestyles of all clients at all times
- Conduct consultations, treatments and other services in a professional and hygienic manner, ensuring the environment is private, safe and comfortable
- During each consultation, ensure that appropriate equipment, treatment and diagnostic aids are available
- Recommend only treatments and preparations that are efficacious and safe
- Use and recommend treatments and preparations in an appropriate and proportionate manner
- Act only within the frame of skill, competency and knowledge appropriate to a trichology consultation and refer the client on to a specialist or other professional when appropriate and timely
- Where appropriate, provide trichology services in collaboration with other health care professionals
- Ensure the client fully understands the outcome of each consultation and what is being recommended
- Obtain client consent and agreement for all consultations and treatments
- Where the client relies on a carer for understanding, interpretation and/or assistance, ensure that person understands full what is being recommended and communicates this to the client
- Maintain and update records for each client, including dates of consultations, treatments recommended and/or carried out and client consents, and keep those clients safe and confidential
- Always act in the best interests of the client and respect client choices
- Maintain appropriate insurance cover
- Respond to criticism or complaint in an open, courteous and non-confrontational manner; where appropriate contact the ART secretariat for information and advice
- Do not engage in any commercial relationship which compromises the integrity and independence of the consultation, diagnosis or recommendations as to treatment
- Comply with the laws prevailing in the country of activity, and not encourage, assist or collude with others who may be engaged in unlawful conduct
- If any circumstance occurs, be it through ill-health, disciplinary action by another body, criminal conviction, substance abuse or other similar occurrence, that renders the Member unable to deliver a fully professional service, this information should be conveyed to the secretariat of ART in a timely fashion
- Keep up to date with the latest developments in the profession through trichology events, training, news and publications
- All Members are subject to the ART’s Disciplinary Policy
- Where a Member suspects a breach of this Code, or other unlawful or unethical conduct or behaviour, they should report it to the secretariat of the ART
- Members must co-operate with any investigation into an allegation or complaint, or other investigation under the Disciplinary Policy, and abide by any undertakings given and/or restrictions placed on their practice by the ART
- Uphold and maintain the reputation of the trichology profession, and public trust in its work.
When the Secretariat of the ART receives an allegation of a breach of the Code, they will make initial enquiries as to the validity of the allegation. Where it is deemed that the allegation prima facie falls within the Code, they will report the matter to the ART Ethical Standards and Conduct Committee. The Committee can call for and examine any evidence to support the allegation.
Depending on the evidence, the Committee can choose to deal with the matter itself by way of recommendation as to future behaviour and additional training as appropriate.
Where the evidence warrants, the Committee can elevate the matter to a special Conduct Board comprising ART Trustees and senior ART Members. The Conduct Board will further investigate the matter. If a serious allegation is upheld, then a range of sanctions will considered, from advising on future conduct to expulsion from ART Membership.
At each stage of the investigation the ART will communicate with the Member(s) concerned as to the status of the ‘allegation’ and/or ‘complaint’.