The Nutrition Certification Board (NCB) adopted the following Code of Ethics to encourage certified coaches to maintain a high standard of integrity in the profession and to protect the public against professional misconduct on the part of all certified affiliates of the NCB.
Nutrition Coaches do not diagnose, treat, prescribe, cure or prevent any disease or disorder unless specifically allowed to do so by their government-issued license. This Code of Ethics is to be enforced in conjunction with applicable laws and regulations otherwise required of the coach.
Note: Coaches may not use the NCB Code for their Code of Ethics. Please develop your personal Code in accordance with the guidelines from your basic coaching skills education organization.
Each Certified Coach Shall:
- Actively maintain professional competence within the standards of his or her profession, including keeping abreast of the latest developments in clinical practice and relevant research.
- Encourage others engaged in Health Coaching to work toward certification within their professional specialty.
- Accurately advertise credentials and educational background without overstating his or her professional credentials and experience.
- Refuse to participate in or conceal unethical practices or procedures.
- Take all reasonable precautions to avoid harm to clients, always demonstrating a concern for the rights, safety, health, welfare, culture and dignity of clients of provided services including patients/clients and persons involved in education or research activities.
- Provide services without discrimination on the basis of race, creed, age, gender, sexual preference, national origin, mental, emotional and/or physical disability, disease, and financial status, social or religious affiliation.
- Accept only those fees that are customary and lawful in the area for services rendered in their professional capacity.
- Provide clients of services with access to office policies, their own progress records and a complaint resolution mechanism, and accurately inform clients of the nature of services rendered as "adopted as clinically effective" or "experimental", and the potential outcome(s) of any such services.
- Respect the right of clients to refuse or discontinue participation.
- Secure clients active participation in assessment and service planning to help assure their consent to participate is based upon accurate information about the proposed services, potential risks and full and complete knowledge about their options.
- Maintain professional, goal-related relationships with clients and avoid personal relationships with clients, other professionals and friends which could interfere with his or her objective professional judgment.
- Refuse services to prospective clients for whom it is judged that particular natural therapy would be ineffective or inappropriate.
- Except as otherwise required by law, protect and respect the confidential nature of information gained from clinical practice, and educational and investigational activities, unless sharing the information reasonably could be deemed necessary to protect an identifiable third party from harm.
- Function within the boundaries of competence and the standards of his or her profession.
- Consult with experienced service providers when additional knowledge or expertise is required, and refer clients to appropriate service providers when other services are deemed necessary.
- Maintain accurate records and reports of services provided.
- When employing or supervision colleagues, provide appropriate supervision and require supervisees to adhere to this Code of Ethics and the standards of practice within their scope of competence.
- Assume ultimate responsibility for the actions of trainees and supervisees under his or her supervision.
- Function with discretion, respect, fairness and integrity in relations with colleagues, students, supervisees and other professionals.
- Support intellectual freedom and professional growth through open discussion of theories and factual findings.
- Refrain from acting in unprofessional, derogatory or disrespectful ways in disagreements with other members in professional meetings, e-mail groups and other forums.
- Refrain from engaging in or permitting harassment or illegal discrimination.
- Impart ethical standards of professional conduct through both instruction and example.
- As an author, assume responsibility for the accuracy and fairness of presented information, guarantee originality of any scholarly papers or presentations he or she may prepare (and/or give credit to ideas and writings of others upon which my work is based), refrain from falsifying, fabricating or appropriating the data of others without specific written permission and disclose any proprietary interests the author may have in professional papers and presentations.
- As a reviewer of funding proposals or manuscripts submitted for publication, consider related information to be confidential and not to be used in any other manner without specific written permission, and excuse him or herself from the review process if there is a perceived conflict of interest, including business relationships or ongoing legal disputes.
- Consider the Code of Ethics in conjunction with the laws, regulations, and ethical standards which govern his or her profession and license(s) to practice.