Root Cause Health Code of Ethics
Lifestyle Prescriptions® Practitioner Code of Practice
Lifestyle Prescriptions® University trained practitioners are health coaches and do NOT diagnose conditions, prescribe treatments, or provide psychological or any other type of therapeutic intervention unless they hold active, nationally recognized credentials.
Lifestyle Prescriptions® Practitioners work with individuals and groups in a client-centered process to empower clients to develop self-determined goals related to health and wellness. Coaches support clients in mobilizing internal and external strengths and resources and developing self-management strategies for making sustainable, healthy lifestyle and behavioral changes.
Root-Cause based health coaching helps clients shift and transform conscious and unconscious habits and strategies that block clients from establishing healthy and empowering nutrition, exercise, sleep, social support, stress management, emotional and mental habits.
As partners and facilitators, Lifestyle Prescriptions® Practitioners are deeply rooted in an integrative model of health coaching based on the latest research in Lifestyle Medicine.
They create awareness of the root-causes and the process of chronic symptoms; apply root-cause health coaching strategies & protocols and support their clients in achieving health goals and behavioral changes based on the clients’ own goals and consistent with the health coaching plan supported by the individual clients’ professional health care providers. Health coaches assist clients to use their insight, personal strengths and resources, goal setting, action steps and accountability toward a healthy lifestyle change.
Writing Lifestyle Prescriptions®
Lifestyle Prescriptions® are NOT medical prescriptions, no medical diagnosis, treatment or any recommendation of drugs or medicine can be provided unless the Lifestyle Prescriptions® Practitioner is licensed in the state or country they are practicing in.
The process of writing Lifestyle Prescriptions® is exclusively focused on lifestyle habits. Lifestyle Prescriptions® are and can only be used to educate and empower clients to become aware of unhealthy lifestyle habits; increase motivation and compliance; and improve their lifestyle habits including but not limited to nutrition, fitness, stress management, sleep and social support. Lifestyle Prescriptions® Practitioner guides clients to access better resources and strategies to live healthier, happier and longer.
Clients’ informed consent is essential prior to commencement of any health coaching consultation. It is recommended that Lifestyle Prescriptions® Practitioners obtain a signed consent form (by the client) at the initial consultation and follow state and federal regulations and laws. The law recognizes that some clients, because of their age, illness or mental capacity cannot give consent to health coaching consultations. In such cases you must obtain clear written consent from someone authorized to give consent on behalf of the client. If you decide you must discontinue working with a client, you must do all you can to help them find an alternative source of care.
Relationship with the Client
Practitioners shall have respect for the religious, political and social situation, sexual orientation and views of any individual irrespective of age, race, color, creed or gender, and must never seek to impose their own beliefs on a client. Practitioners shall at all times conduct themselves in a honorable and courteous manner and with due diligence in their relations with their clients and the public. Proper moral conduct must always be paramount in the members’ relations with clients; they must behave with respect, courtesy, dignity, discretion and tact. Their attitude must be professional, competent, empathetic, realistic and supportive, thus encouraging uplift in the client’s outlook and belief in a progression towards good health practices. The relationship between the practitioner and client is that of a professional with a client. The client places trust in a practitioner’s skill, care and integrity, and it is the practitioner’s duty to act with due diligence at all times and not to abuse this trust in any way.
Practitioners must never claim to “diagnose” or “cure”. The possible benefits may be described but recovery must never be guaranteed. When a client consults a Lifestyle Prescriptions® Practitioner for the first time about a particular problem the client should be asked what medical advice they have received and the response entered in the client’s records. Since it is legal to refuse medical treatment, no client can be forced to consult a doctor. The advice must be recorded in the client’s records for the health coaches own protection. It is recommended to consult and work closely with the general practitioner. Before consultations, health coaches must explain fully either in writing or verbally the procedures involved in the health coaching consultations including such matters as the process, the length of visits, fees, etc.
Lifestyle Prescriptions® Practitioners and all those who work with them must not disclose or allow to be disclosed, any information about a client (including the fact of their attendance) to any third party, including members of the client’s family, without the client’s consent unless it is by due process of the law or for immediate protection of or avoidance of identifiable real risk to a third party, in which case the health coach is advised to obtain legal advice. No third party, including assistants and members of the client’s family, may be present during the course of the consultation with an adult client without the client’s express consent. However, health coaches working with children, severely disturbed clients or those of the opposite sex should give due consideration to the need to safeguard themselves by having a third party present in the treatment room or in the treatment premises.
At present, Lifestyle Prescriptions®, health coaching or any other complimentary or alternative therapy are approved as “medical aid” under most current laws. In most countries it is a criminal offence for a parent or guardian not to seek medical aid for a child under the age of 18 years or whatever age applies by law in each country. Therefore the Lifestyle Prescriptions® Practitioner should secure a signed and dated statement from a parent or guardian who refuses to seek medical aid as defined in law.
Practicing Lifestyle Prescriptions® Practitioners must ensure that their health and personal hygiene do not jeopardize the welfare or health and safety of their clients. A coach must be aware of any personal issues which could impact their ability to be a competent coach and seek support as necessary. A coach must not work with a client whose requirements exceed the coach’s capacity, training and competence. Where appropriate the coach must seek referral to a more appropriately qualified person. Lifestyle Prescriptions® Practitioners do not presume specialist knowledge outside their own area of expertise unless their training and qualifications entitle them to do so, and they have appropriate insurance cover. It is the responsibility of the practicing Lifestyle Prescriptions® Professional to comply with local and national legislation with regard to the health coaching undertaken. They should be fully aware of current laws that affect their practice.
Notifiable Diseases: It is a statutory requirement that certain infectious diseases are reported to the Medical Officer of Health (MOH) in the district in which the client is living when the disease is diagnosed. Health Coaches are required to follow local policies and educate themselves on the legislation specific to their state and country of practice.
Lifestyle Prescriptions® Practitioners working with paying clients are required to carry professional health coaching liability insurance. Professional liability insurance is available from many carriers. Either signup for a new policy or add “health coaching” or “coaching services” to your existing policy.
Practicing health coaches must ensure they keep comprehensive records as required by local law and these records are kept securely and confidentially in accordance with local legislation.This is especially important for the defense of any negligence actions as well as for efficient and responsible practice. Three criteria need to be met to validate consent:
- The consent must be voluntary, the client needs to have received enough information to make a decision, the client is competent, i.e. able, to give consent.
- In order to be able to determine that any given health coaching consultation administered is appropriate and reasonable, it is the responsibility of the member to ensure that their client notes/records are sufficiently thorough and accurate so that they can demonstrate that the consultation was appropriate and was carried out safely and competently.
- All practicing Lifestyle Prescriptions® Practitioners should provide clients with the contact details of the Lifestyle Prescriptions® University office if they wish to make a complaint.