This article acknowledges an enduring debate about the nature of evidence and provides a context for the selective review of a literature on the outcomes of Clinical Supervision, a structured arrangement to support staff, which has been widely introduced into health service systems across the world. The literature revealed that many of the claims for the positive effects of CS have remained unsubstantiated. A contemporary pragmatic randomised controlled trial, summarised here, tested the relationships between Clinical Supervision, quality of care and patient outcomes, in mental health settings in Queensland, Australia. It confirmed that beneficial and sustainable CS outcomes accrued for Supervisors and Supervisees, as measured by a suite of research methods and instruments including The Manchester Clinical Supervision Scale©, and for patients in one private sector mental health facility. However, the effect Clinical Supervision had on nominated outcomes still remained difficult to demonstrate across a broad front. Plausible explanations are offered for this and a new framework for future outcomes-related research studies is suggested, in the continuing attempt to strengthen an empirical evidence base for Clinical Supervision.
- clinical supervision
- evidence base
- Manchester Clinical Supervision Scale