Skills of Clinical Supervision for Nurses: A Practical Guide for Supervisees, Clinical Supervisors, and Managers

By Meg Bond; Stevie Holland | Go to book overview

Introduction

This book is about the interpersonal and personal skills involved in clinical supervision in nursing, taking an approach which highlights focused growth and support as the vehicle for developing and sustaining quality clinical practice. We suggest that clinical supervision provides a route to developing and maintaining emotionally healthier individuals in an emotionally healthier workforce culture. We welcome the current impetus towards developing clinical supervision in nursing and echo Swain’s sentiments that this may be overdue:

It beggars belief that we have, for so long, failed to incorporate [clinical
supervision] as a defined component of practice. Any one of us looking
back at the human pain and social distress of others to which we have
been exposed – not to mention our own – must surely question what
makes us suppose we can practise effectively without such a regular
conscientious examination of our work, of what might improve it, what
might impede it, and of our own feelings about it.

(Swain 1995: 12)

Effective systems of clinical supervision can bring benefits not only to practitioners but also to the organisation and its clients when it fulfils the aim of improving and developing clinical practice.

In our work as education and training consultants in the National Health Service, we find the most frequently asked questions about clinical supervision are ‘What exactly IS it?’ and ‘How do we go about doing it?’ From those who have begun to use clinical supervision, we are asked ‘Are we doing it properly?’ and those with more experience ask ‘Why has it taken so long to get going in nursing?’ Whilst participants on our skills training courses find some answers to these questions during the courses, many other practitioners have been frustrated with the lack of answers in the nursing literature. Our own search for practical guidance to help us with our confusion

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