The supervisory ward manager’s role: progress on Compassion in Practice action area four
Intended for healthcare professionals
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The supervisory ward manager’s role: progress on Compassion in Practice action area four

Paul Regan Senior lecturer, School of Nursing, Faculty of Health and Wellbeing, University of Central Lancashire, Preston, England
Sarah Shillitoe Senior lecturer, School of Health Sciences, University of Central Lancashire, Preston, England

In 2012, the Department of Health published Compassion in Practice, which included six areas for action. Action area four suggests that ward managers and leaders should be supervisory, and not included in ward staff numbers. The recommendation has recently been changed to promote black and minority ethnic (BME) leadership in the NHS. This article examines the literature on supervisory nurse leader roles between 2007 and 2017 to identify what, if any, progress has been made.

Although supervisory status can improve care at ward level, and was endorsed by the Francis Report, it seems that few care providers in England have invested in this, possibly because it is voluntary, rather than a statutory requirement. The article argues that, rather than focusing on BME leadership, commissioners and providers should consider implementing the original action four to support the lessons learned in the Francis Report.

Nursing Management. 24, 6, 27-32. doi: 10.7748/nm.2017.e1641


Conflict of interest

None declared

Peer review

This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software

Received: 03 May 2017

Accepted: 15 August 2017

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