The realities of clinical supervision in an Australian acute inpatient setting

Authored by: Michelle Cleary , Jan Horsfall

Routledge Handbook of Clinical Supervision

Print publication date:  October  2010
Online publication date:  October  2010

Print ISBN: 9780415779555
eBook ISBN: 9780203843437
Adobe ISBN: 9781136912801


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This chapter draws on the findings of an ethnographic study of Australian acute inpatient mental health settings, which sought to better understand the cultural realities of clinical supervision (CS) for this culture/population (see Cleary and Freeman 2005). Having outlined the research design and key findings, this chapter then discusses the findings in light of current literature and highlights some future considerations/issues that will need resolving, if CS is to become a widespread reality in Australian acute inpatient mental health settings. It is noteworthy that this chapter shows how many of the mental health nurses in acute inpatient mental health units, when asked, formally agree that clinical supervision is important, but informally regard it as having a limited experiential value. This may in part be attributable to many nurses believing that they are already involved in CS, though these experiences do not correspond with established definitions of formal CS.

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