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Supervision
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9-Hour LISW-S Certificate Program: This course provides a strong foundation of supervision skills, developed to meet all educational requirements for supervision designation by the Ohio CSWMFT Board.
 
NASW Ohio's Supervision Registry: This tool connects those looking for a supervisor to complete the required hours of training supervision for independent licensure (LISW) with NASW members with the credentials to do so (LISW-Ss).

Supervision Models & Resources

Written Understandings and Agreements

NASW’s Best Practice Standards in Social Work Supervision (2013) suggests that agreements address several key issues:                                          

  • Supervisory Context: Spell out the purposes and objectives of the supervision, which staff will provide supervision, and any unique supervision methods that will be used (for example, audio or video recordings).
  • Learning Plan: Identify specific learning goals. Identify any specific bodies of knowledge and skills that will be a priority.
  • Format and Schedule: Clarify how often supervision will take place, as well as the location, duration, and format.
    • Individual or group supervision
    • Will supervisor be available by telephone or e-mail
    • Specific supervision techniques that will be used, such as process recordings, role playing, viewing through one-way mirrors, or audio or video recordings
  • Accountability: Nature of the supervisor’s authority within the context of supervision. Will the supervisor prepare performance evaluations, provide recommendations for supervisee’s license, or sign case records or other forms?
  • Conflict Resolution: Define the procedures used to address conflicts or disagreements between supervisors and supervisees.
  • Compensation: If supervisors will be paid for their services, state who is responsible for payment, terms of payment, and mutual obligations and rights of each party.
  • Client Notification: Provisions for notifying clients that supervision is taking place, the nature of information that will be shared, and the supervisor’s name and affiliation.
  • Duration and Termination: Indicate time frame and procedures for termination.

Record Keeping

The supervisor’s role is to ensure that supervisees keep records that conform to agency procedures. Record keeping is important to the ongoing function of the agency and to sustain record of client’s contact and services received. Record keeping is often tied to funding. If supervisee, supervisor, or agency becomes involved in a legal action, the record can be a crucial defense against allegations—often the only proof of what took place is the written record. Primary reason for documentation should be for good clinical care. Beyond the agency requirements, supervisors and practitioners should consider records from two perspectives: legal liability and personal use. According to Munson, a good record should contain the following:
  1. Signed informed consents for all treatment
  2. Signed informed consents for all transmission of confidential information
  3. Any treatment contracts
  4. Notation of all treatment contacts and significant information and actions regarding the contact (including face-to-face and telephone contacts with clients, client relatives, and others)
  5. Notations of failed or cancelled appointments
  6. Notations of supervision and consultation contacts
  7. All correspondence and record of contacts with other professionals
  8. A complete social history or initial database, including past and present evaluations and treatment, a medical history, and record of a current physical examination
  9. A diagnostic assessment or statement, which should be reviewed, revised, and documented periodically
  10. A list of all medications the person is currently taking
  11. A record of the practitioner’s basis for assessment made and the treatment provided
  12. Notations of suggestions, instructions, referrals, or directives made to the client and whether they were followed
  13. The practitioner’s informal notes, including such items as
    1. Speculation about client dynamics
    2. Impressions about the course of treatment
    3. Problems resolved
    4. Problems being worked on
    5. Problems to be worked on in the future
    6. Projections about termination, and summary of perceptions of significant treatment session dynamics
  14. A treatment plan that is updated every 90 days, including
    1. Client problems
    2. Short-and long-term goals (stated in observable and measurable form)
    3. Notation of dates of goals, and signatures of client, therapist, and supervisor
Munson, C.E. (2001) Handbook of Clinical Social Work Supervision. New York: Hawthorne Press

Ohio Law

You can see the Rules & Laws pertaining to social work supervision at the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker and Marriage and Family Therapist Board. Ohio Administrative Code 4757 Counselor, Social Worker, and Marriage and Family Therapist Board, chapter 4757-23, specifically references the supervision of social workers.
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