Hong Kong Guild of
Hypnotherapist and Psychotherapist
香 港 催 眠 醫 師
及 心 理 治 療 師 公 會
The GHP Code of Ethics; Disciplinary
Procedure; Articles & Memorandum
All practising members of The Guild undertake to:
- Maintain strict confidentiality within the therapeutic relationship
consistent with the good care of the client and the laws of
the land and ensure that any client notes and records be kept
secure and confidential. Confidentiality must be observed at
all times unless:
(a) it is in the best interest of the client/patient to disclose
(b) the client/patient has given their permission to disclose;
(c) where the law requires disclosure;
(d) when sharing information with fellow professionals. In the
latter case, client anonymity must be guaranteed;
(e) in the event of a complaint being made against them, subject
to the complainant providing written consent for their notes
and records to be made available, members may be required to
provide this information to The Guild on demand.
Practitioners must note that the question of confidentiality
also applies to client records, computerised records, and any
audio or video recording. Any information or case histories
used for training or commercial purposes must have the written
consent of the individual involved.
- Never promise a cure for any condition or problem, nor give
advice or otherwise pass comment on any medical, psychiatric,
or psychological problem or condition unless they have training
and qualifications in these fields.
- To provide a service to clients only in those areas in which
they have trained and demonstrated competence.
- Be aware of their own limitations and experience and whenever
appropriate, be prepared to refer a client on to another more
suitable practitioner (whether or not that practitioner be a
member of The Guild) who might reasonably be expected to offer
- Ensure as far as possible that wherever an aspect of the
client's condition is either known or suspected to be beyond
their area of expertise, the client be advised to seek medical
or other appropriate advice.
- Always obtain written permission from the client (or client's
parents/guardians if appropriate) before recording client sessions
by any method other than written notes.
- Take all reasonable steps to ensure the safety of both the
client and any person who may be accompanying the client.
- Refrain from using their position of trust to:
(a) exploit the client emotionally, sexually, financially or
in other way whatsoever. Should either a sexual or financial
relationship (other than the payment of session fees or purchase
of books, tapes, or other relevant products) develop between
either therapist and client or members of their respective immediate
families, the therapist must immediately cease to accept fees,
terminate treatment consistent with clause 9 below and transfer
the client to another suitable therapist at the earliest opportunity.
(Any doubt as to whether a situation falls into this category
must be resolved in consultation with The Guild)
(b) touch the client in any way that may be open to misinterpretation.
- Refrain from commencing any sort of relationship with any
client, past or present, other than a therapeutic one. Clients
must remain solely as clients. Members are strongly advised
against working with friends or family for anything other than
simple relaxation work or other 'single-session' therapies.
- Terminate treatment at the earliest moment consistent with
the good care of the client.
- Not permit considerations of religion, nationality, gender,
gender preference, disability, politics, or social standing
to adversely influence client treatment. Where there is a potential
for this situation to exist, i.e. where a therapist is not at
ease with some aspect of the client's 'way of being', then it
is part of that therapist's duty of care to refer the client
on to another suitable practitioner.
- As far as possible, not to refuse therapy because of financial
- Ensure that their work place and all facilities offered
to both clients and their companions will be in every respect
suitable and appropriate for the service provided.
- Disclose full details of all relevant training, experience
and qualifications to clients upon request.
- Make no claim that they hold specific qualifications unless
such claim can be totally substantiated.
- Use no claim or title connected with The Guild other than
that they are Members of The Guild. Appropriate designated letters,
i.e., AGHP (Affiliate or Student Member), LGHP (Licentiate),
MGHP (Member), FGHP (Fellow) and Guild logos may be discreetly
- Explain fully to clients in advance of any treatment, fees,
terms of payment, session length, and any charges levied for
non-attendance or cancelled appointments.
- Present all services and products in an unambiguous manner
and ensure that the client retains complete control of the decision
to purchase such services or products.
- Neither expect nor encourage gifts from clients. Small
tokens of appreciation may be accepted at the end of therapy
but should in no way be solicited.
- Conduct themselves at all times in accordance with their
professional status and in such a way that neither undermines
public confidence in the process or profession of hypnotherapy
and/or psychotherapy nor brings the reputation of The Guild
- (a) Inform The Guild, upon initial application, of any
disciplinary action taken against them by any professional body
and further inform The Guild, in writing, of any subsequent
action taken against them whilst a member of The Guild.
(b) Confirm, upon initial application, that they have not been
convicted of any offence likely to bring their professional
name or the reputation of The Guild into disrepute and undertake
to inform The Guild, in writing, should such an event subsequently
occur whilst a member of The Guild.
- Inform The Guild, in writing, of any change in contact
address and/or telephone number, at the earliest convenient
- HK members must ensure that all advertising shall comply
with the laws in HK and make available all such literature to
The Guild on demand. In the case of overseas Members, their
advertising shall comply fully with the laws of their land.
- Make available all relevant information requested as a
result of investigation by the appointed Complaints and Disciplinary
Officer without hindrance (whether implied or actual) or unreasonable
delay and comply fully with all requirements inherent within
the Complaints and Disciplinary procedure.
- To use a trading name (i.e. 'Anytown Hypnotherapy Centre')
only if operating their practice from a bona fide commercial
- To never publicly criticise or malign another member of
the profession, either with or without perceived justification,
whether or not they are a member of The Guild.
- To report to The Guild, any other Member who appears to
be in breaking one or more of the ethical rules laid down in
this document. Such complaint can be made with total confidentiality;
the complainant's name will not be revealed other than to the
members of the Advisory Board. Anonymous complaints will not
be considered but all others will be fully investigated.
In the event of a complaint being made against a member of The
Guild, be it by another member or a member of the public, the
following procedure will be implemented:
(a) In the first instance, said member will be contacted by
the Chairman of The Guild or a Member of the Administrative
Board of The Guild for an informal discussion concerning the
(b) At the discretion of the Interviewing officer, the member
may be required to attend a formal disciplinary hearing.
(c) In the event of (b), and dependent upon the seriousness
of the complaint, the member may be placed under immediate suspension.
Any disciplinary hearing shall consist of 3 individuals: a
disciplinary officer and 2 members of The Guild. The member
under investigation may bring one witness or other relevant
party to the meeting.
All available evidence will be reviewed; if the complaint is
upheld and shows that the member has contravened any part of
the code of ethics of The Guild, appropriate disciplinary action
will be taken. 'Appropriate disciplinary action' in this context
depends upon the seriousness of the complaint and whether there
have been previous upheld complaints.
For a serious or repeated breach of the code of ethics, the
member will be dismissed from The Guild, although there will
be a 6 week period during which a reasonable appeal may be made
to the Chairman of The Guild. During this period, the member
will remain on suspension.
For a lesser breach, a written warning will be issued and recorded
within The Guild files.
All members accept that this is not a static document and
that it may be altered from time to time, by The Guild, in accordance
with the need to ensure ongoing professionalism within the field
of hypnotherapy and psychotherapy.
Articles of the Guild
The GHP is an exclusive body dedicated to maintaining a high
standard of professionalism amongst its members committed to
ongoing training and as well maintain hypnotherapists directories
for HK and world-wide hypnotherapists. This, combined with a
strict code of ethics, will ensure that the professional standard
of The Guild will always be of the highest order.
The following 'Articles of The Guild' apply to all members:
- There are four grades of membership:
Affiliate or Student: shows that the member is in training,
or has basic knowledge of hypnosis, or just interested in hypnotherapy.
Licentiate: This level of qualification is specifically for
individuals who have completed an accredited or approved distance
learning course and/or completed a suitable examination. Licentiate
members are bound by precisely the same code and rules as all
other members and will be expected to apply for full membership
after a period of no more than three years in practice. Applications
will need to be supported by professional and peer references
and will be considered by the advisory board.
Member: shows that the member has completed an advanced training
course and is qualified to deal with most problems. This is
the level at which most therapists will normally join.
Fellow: This grade of membership cannot be applied for but
is awarded at the discretion of the Advisory Board to those
therapists who display above average levels of expertise and
who make an above average contribution to the Hypnotherapy profession
- The Annual Subscription is due on December 31st and stands
at free of charge at December, 2002. Any change will be advised
with renewal notices. It is anticipated that there will be regular
seminars featuring speakers on a variety of topics and an Annual
- Although non-members may attend some seminars, members of
The Guild will receive a discount of 10% on the entrance fee.
- All members are required to attend at least 15 hours of
continuing professional development per year (not necessarily
GHP seminars) when renewing their membership each year.
- All members must be engaged in regular supervision, either
peer-based or via their training organisation, or both. There
must be at least one supervisory meeting per month.
- All members will agree to abide by the code of ethics; signing
the application form for membership constitutes such agreement.
- Should any member organise or run a hypnosis/hypnotherapy/psychotherapy
seminar or other similar event, it must not be implied that
such event is in any way endorsed by or otherwise supported
by The Guild.
- The Guild undertakes to ensure that the contact details
of each member should be readily available to the general public,
via any means available. To this end, The Guild will maintain
registration with the major Internet search engines and it is
intended that other suitable advertising will eventually be
placed where possible.
- The Guild is not a profit-making enterprise; all fees received
will go to the running of The Guild, including administration
expenses, the payment of lecture fees to speakers at seminars
and conference, and to contributors to any GHP Journal.
- From time to time, this document may have additions or
deletions; in such event, the latest copy will be available
to all members via our website.