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Reinert, C.d. Kowacs, C. (2019). Patient-Targeted “Googling:” When Therapists Search for Information about Their Patients Online. Psychodyn. Psych., 47(1):27-38.

(2019). Psychodynamic Psychiatry, 47(1):27-38

Patient-Targeted “Googling:” When Therapists Search for Information about Their Patients Online

Camila de Araujo Reinert and Clarice Kowacs

The ubiquitous nature of the internet and of online social networking has created new opportunities but also challenges for the psychotherapist. Former notions of anonymity and privacy are now infeasible as a result of massive information sharing through electronic media. The clinical repercussions of these changes are being extensively debated, but issues involving patient privacy and anonymity have not been sufficiently explored. Although several aspects of the impact of the internet on therapeutic setting—such as the need for psychotherapists to exercise caution when making personal information available online—have been addressed in the literature, there has been comparatively little discussion on psychotherapists seeking information about their patients on the internet, a phenomenon known as “patient-targeted googling” (PTG).

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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