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Clinical supervision in child protection for community nurses

Green Lister, Pam and Crisp, B. (2005) Clinical supervision in child protection for community nurses. Child Abuse Review, 14 (1). pp. 57-72. ISSN 0952-9136

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Abstract

Community nurses have been recognized as having a key role in the protection and care of children, particularly in relation to the identification and detection of child abuse. In order to fulfill this role in a competent manner, they need to have access to appropriate supervision. The aim of this paper is to explore community nurses' and health care managers' understanding and experience of clinical supervision in child protection. The findings presented here were collected as part of a larger study commissioned by the Greater Glasgow Primary Health Care National Health Service (NHS) Trust. Ninety-nine nurses and nursing managers were interviewed, either individually or in groups, about their professional involvement in child protection issues and support for their involvement in child protection work, as well as their current knowledge and perceived training needs. The interview data was subjected to a thematic analysis. A lack of consensus was found among nurses and managers in Glasgow as to what constitutes clinical supervision and a good deal of variation in nurses' experiences of clinical supervision in the field of child protection. The historical difficulties with regard to supervision were attributed to several aspects of nursing culture. However, both nurses and managers emphasized the need for formal, regular, systematic supervision for all nurses regardless of their specific role with regard to child protection.