The Lived Experience of a Single Cohort of NHS Scotland Podiatrists Undertaking Supervision. Supervisor and Supervisee Perspectives.
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Introduction: The landscape for the allied health professions (AHPs) in the Scottish health and social care sector is evolving and arguably becoming more complex. Increasing demands, service pressures and patient complexity, are all influencing factors. Clinical supervision (termed supervision throughout this thesis) is a phenomenon which is widely utilised in the AHP setting to support staff in all aspects of practice. The researcher is embedded within the profession of podiatry, a profession which is somewhat new to the practice of supervision in the Scottish health and social care sector. The profession of podiatry, like the other AHPs, is experiencing rapid change. Podiatrists are inputting into more complex areas of care which historically they were not involved with. The researcher embarked on a journey to support podiatry staff in a local team with this rapid change and evolving landscape. The researcher sought to support podiatry staff by introducing an evidenced based model of supervision which was co-constructed between the researcher and the podiatry team involved in this research. The aim of this research was to explore the lived experiences of the podiatry staff within this team who were enacting this new model of supervision. Methodology: An interpretive hermeneutic phenomenological stance underpinned this research. Word clouds and participant led one-to-one interviews were used to explore (n=12) NHS podiatry participants’ lived experiences with the local model of supervision, (n=6) were supervisors and (n=6) were supervisees. Data was analysed by the researcher (JM) using methods which respected the hermeneutical philosophy of Hans-Georg Gadamer, and his concept of the fusion of horizons. Findings which emerged from the data analysis were co-constructed by the researcher and participants in the fusion of horizons. Findings: Four key phenomenological meanings emerged from the data which highlighted trust as a key essence of the phenomenon of supervision. The four key meanings represent different facets of trust which emerged in relation to participants’ experiences of the local supervision model. These included: ‘trust in the process and its impact and outcomes’; ‘trust in self’; ‘trust in one another’; and ‘trust in the organisation (and one’s position within)’. Conclusion: The findings of this research have added to what is already known about the concept of trust in relation to the phenomenon of supervision in the AHP setting. The findings also begin to build an evidence base in relation to supervision in the context of the profession of podiatry. To date, this is an area with little research, and thus this research begins to address this gap.