The words appraisal and supervision can fill people with dread and fear, but we at NurChat want to discuss the importance of support and supervision for staff, focusing on how positive it should and could be. Following the publication of ‘Compassion in Practice’ by the NHS Commissioning Board, supervision shouldn’t just be a paper exercise fulfilling a requirement, it should be an opportunity for reflection and support. Supervision is often focused on what we can do better, which can imply something has gone wrong. Instead we should focus on how we can improve and perform better.
Chief Nursing Officer Jane Cummings stated ‘…It’s also really important how we care for each other. It’s hard work in the NHS, clinicians work really hard… we all have a duty to look after each other.’
Within the ‘Compassion in Practice’ plan, there are six ‘areas of action’ and one of the actions is: ‘Ensuring we have the right staff, with the right skills, in the right place’, which will be led by Ruth May, Director of Nursing for NHS Midlands and East. This action area recognises the emotional labour involved in nursing as well as the need for staff to be supported and developed in their roles, and recommends the development of models of clinical supervision to provide the necessary emotional support for qualified nurses and midwives.
All healthcare staff should receive an annual appraisal, but despite recommendations, many nurses do not receive regular clinical supervision and sadly, at present, it is not a mandatory requirement for nurses as it is with other professions such as counsellors, psychotherapists, psychologists, art, music and drama therapists, play therapists, child protection workers and midwives.
In this discussion we’ll be asking you to reflect back on your supervision experiences. What comes to mind? Have they been positive experiences? Should supervision be made mandatory? Are you offered supervision and is it effective? As students, we are taught about using reflective practice as a regular tool, so when do you reflect on your practice and how? How often are you offered clinical supervision? What tools do you use to debrief? How can we support each other when incidents happen?
Join in the discussion at 8pm GMT 22/01/2013. If you’ve never joined a #NurChat before, it’s simple to take part. You just need internet access and a twitter account, which is free. Simply go to www.tweetchat.com, login using your twitter details, enter NurChat in the box at the top of the page and hey presto, the conversation is displayed in one continuous stream for you. To contribute, simply type your comment in the large box at the top of the page, and tweetchat will add the nurchat hashtag for you automatically, so your comment won’t be missed.