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Supervisory Practice and Guidelines

Click here for this page as a MS Word Document (43 KB)

DrugNet was designed to be actively used by supervisory staff as a learning and quality assurance tool. The following guidelines aim to enhance clinical practice, provide accurate feedback and improve staff morale.

Below are some suggested steps which are aimed at supporting supervisors to fulfil their staff development roles regarding drug management using the DrugNet web.

These guidelines are based on general principles of professional development and continuous learning which can be viewed by clicking here (or as an MS Word document (22 KB) by clicking here).

A supervisory checklist and and a feedback questionnaire for supervisees to complete can be viewed by clicking here.


Guidelines for supervisory steps

Main areas of DrugNet for supervisors to review



Develop Importance, Priority and 'Space'

    Agree on priority to improve drug management. Negotiate approval from senior management. Ideally, drug management should be linked to the organisation's business improvement plan which would include indicators of change. One indicator could be 'a 50% improvement in drug management skills'. Determine any resourcing implications (these should be minimal as the majority of training is 'on-the-job').

Become Familiar with DrugNet

    The aim is not to know everything in the site, but rather to have a good sense of what it contains and how to access its functions. (See Appendix 1)

Develop Staff Interest and Motivation

bullet Identify areas of staff interest and concern regarding drug management. Help staff connect their core role to drug management issues.
bullet Introduce staff (individually or collectively) to a reward and growth approach to engagement with DrugNet clinical standards. Show example of certificate of attainment.
bullet Identify motivated staff and recruit as peer leaders (teach peer supervisory skills as required - see coaching/GROWS model)

Demonstrate and Orientate Staff to DrugNet

bullet Provide a brief demonstration of how DrugNet works (use the PowerPoint presentation 'Overview of DrugNet'. )
bullet Couch as a 'gift' from the Department' to support workers.
bullet Link to overall Departmental priority arising out of the NSW Drug Summit (Parliament of NSW).
bullet Relate to clinical utility as per step 3.

Audit of Skills

a. Self-Assessment

bullet Ask staff to self-assess against the DrugNet clinical standards.
bullet Introduce the concept of 'mapping the skills territory' rather than being a test.
bullet Remind staff that improvements are viewed favourably - that is, overstating own skills may be counter-productive.

b. Supervisory Assessment

bullet Inform staff they will be scheduled for an assessment by their supervisor.
bullet Give a rationale which is to develop staff base-line; to negotiate with staff their commitment to achieving learning outcomes; and allow for recognition and reward for changes in skills and work practices.
bullet Assessment of outcomes can be done in 1, 2 or more sessions.

(Assessment for the performance of supervisory staff can be obtained by clicking here)

Negotiate Learning and Professional Development Goals

bullet Negotiate those areas which are to be progressed.
bullet Identify the short-term and longer-term goals including professional (improved skills and knowledge) and career goals (career direction and planning).

Develop a Learning Climate

bullet Indicate the relevant areas on DrugNet for review.
bullet Discuss any clinical cases related to learning goals.
bullet Use the GROWS model of coaching.
bullet Provide a positive reframe for mistakes as learning opportunities.
bullet Identify a range of other sources for skills and knowledge development (books, journals, drug self-help booklets, DrugNet and other Drug Web sites - click here for drug web links)
bullet Encourage the use of external telephone and face-to-face consultations and supervision from:
bullet local drug agency specialists (click here for agency information),
bullet telephone Alcohol and Drug Information Services (ADIS) Click here for a list of telephone services from ADCA. Telephone services can provide immediate access to 'expert' support and are confidential which may allow staff to more readily discuss 'mistakes' and insecurities about drug management.
bullet Provide regular review of progress.

Enhance Peer Support and Peer Supervision

bullet Encourage the development of peer support, buddy systems to progress through learning outcomes and encourage between session activity.
bullet Teach peer supervisory (coaching) methods. (Click here for a list of Internet coaching sites)

Provide intermittent, whole of worksite learning opportunities

bullet Send an E-mail to clinical staff with 'Drug Issue Of The Week/Month'. Relate to typical clinical case and provide a DrugNet link within the E-mail. Review at the end of the week/month within a staff meeting.
bullet Post a topic of interest in the DrugNet discussion group. Ask staff to consider and contribute.

Develop action learning, mini-projects arising out of supervision sessions

bullet All clinical staff in a worksite to discuss issues arising out of progressing the learning outcomes. (eg, need for drug pamphlets; to develop protocols with drug agencies; need to standardise screening and/or assessment instruments; etc)
bullet Meet every 6-8 weeks for 1-2 hours to discuss progress of projects using action learning.
bullet Use a notice board, newsletter or E-mail to notify all staff of individual or team achievements regarding drug management.
bullet Design an event to present first certificate of drug management competence



Drug Net Instructions & Overview

bullet Home (Contents page)
bullet DrugNet Features and Overview
bullet DrugNet Overview pp (PowerPoint presentation - PowerPoint program required)

Drug Interventions

bullet Treatment Steps
bullet Parent & child issues


bullet Models
bullet Drug Information


bullet PowerPoint presentations

Learning Goals, Assessment

bullet Standards

Search Functions

bullet Site map and contents in home page. Analogy to browsing through a library
bullet Search (using a catalogue - available on the home page and search page) Note: Search may be DrugNet only, or the World Wide Web for those with Internet access.


bullet Discussion Group (Allows anyone to post an issue for others to read & reply)
bullet Feedback (provides the possibility of sending feedback anonymously to enhance DrugNet)


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Other DrugNet Pages in this Subject Heading

Introduction ] National AOD Standards ] Organisational Quality Assurance Standards ] [ Supervision ] Professional Development ] Supervisory Tools ]

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