Clinical Supervision and Consultation

CLINICAL SUPERVISION/CONSULTATION

    • Do you need a clinical supervisor?
    • Would you like to have someone to talk to about clinical issues for consultation purposes?
    • Are you a new counselor or therapist with questions about therapy or your job in general?
    • Do you have questions or concerns about a client and want to ask your supervisor or co-worker, but there’s some sort of problem?

 

It is very common for me to see someone new to the profession of mental health or rehabilitation counseling trying to navigate their way by learning the job from someone who doesn’t have the same level of training or licensure that is required for the person that they are “supervising” because they work for the government, a non-profit organization, or some law allows them to do it. Or worse, the person who is supervising them may actually have the degree and licensure but doesn’t take things seriously and has never really tried to learn what psychotherapy or rehabilitation counseling is really all about and instead just believes in doing whatever the next “New Age” thing to do is to get “successful” case closures as soon as possible. But that’s not how people work and there are those of us who entered this field because we really wanted to help people. My first priority is always the client, and I will not engage in and/or continue clinical supervision of a person who believes differently.

CLINICAL SUPERVISION 

Clinical supervision is typically required at different stages during training and after graduation from a degree program if a person has completed the requirements to receive his or her provisional license. In order to provide psychotherapy, a person must be under the supervision of someone who is independently licensed by the state that they are in or already have an independent license to practice psychotherapy. It is also encouraged, and in some cases required, that even if a person is independently licensed to practice psychotherapy that they receive clinical supervision if they are using a new method or working with a client that is beyond what they usually do. The definition of a “qualified clinical supervisor” varies state-to-state. 

My approach to clinical supervision is to serve as your mentor and supervisor. This is a critical period of growth for every clinician, and while a bad clinical supervisor can teach you just as much as a good clinical supervisor, I believe that I have a duty to share with you all that I have learned and how I have grown as a clinician so that you can too. But make no mistake, I will not simply tell you all of the ‘secrets’ to psychotherapy that I’ve learned. That would be detrimental to your learning process. There is, after all, a major difference between knowledge and wisdom. My goal for you is for you to gain wisdom as part of the clinical supervision that you receive from me.

The process of learning takes time, but clinical supervision is important to protect clients from harm and to promote good self-care. New clinicians are often excited about their degrees and can hardly wait to start trying new things. But there are risks and benefits to the work that we do. Laws, ethics and even our consciences can sometimes be at odds. I view clinical supervision is a way of sharing the difficulties that come up in the first couple of years of practice and the wisdom of the ages in an effort to protect our clients and ourselves from harm. 

While I am independently licensed as a clinical social worker in Missouri and Arizona, I am currently only able to provide clinical supervision in the state of Arizona. However, I am authorized to provide clinical supervision for social work, counseling, marriage and family therapy, and substance abuse counseling throughout the state of Arizona. I am also qualified to provide supervision nationwide as a certified rehabilitation counselor.

CONSULTATION FOR CLINICIANS AND OTHERS

Clinical and other professional consultation is also a common practice for those who are providing psychotherapy, counseling, and case management services when unfamiliar, rare or complex situations arise that the clinician or agency simply wants to get perspective from a more seasoned professional, a clinician who specializes or has specific knowledge or expertise in the particular area in question, or in some situations a lawyer.  It is important for both the person providing consultation and the person or agency seeking the consultation to document the consultation, regardless of whether the person or agency chooses to follow any guidance that they receive. 

My approach to consultation is not always designed to tell you exactly what to do; rather it is sometimes designed to help you think through the decision-making process and refer you to the resources that you need so that you can do what is best for the client and manage your risks. This approach can help you understand what is getting in the way of you being able to identify what needs to be done and help you recognize that you already knew the answer to your question(s). In other cases, my approach to consultation is clear-cut and directive, combined with an explanation so that you can understand the “how” and the “why”. 

I provide clinical consultation to licensed mental health professionals, including those who are provisionally licensed, in all areas that I currently treat and have experience treating. I also provide expert consultation to individuals, other professionals such as lawyers, businesses, and government agencies, on a wide range of topics related to disability, domestic violence, and more.  

ALTHOUGH YOU MAY SEE THE BENEFITS OF CLINICAL SUPERVISION OR CONSULTATION FROM GIANNA ELMS, LCSW, YOU MAY STILL HAVE SOME QUESTIONS OR CONCERNS ABOUT THE PROCESS…

I am not a clinician, but I would like to receive consultation on some matters related to mental health and other areas that you have experience. 

I provide consultation services to adults from all walks of life. It’s been an interesting journey that my practice has taken me because of my experience, research and teaching abilities. Therefore, if you are interested in learning more about all of the services and specialties that I offer, I encourage you to visit my services page and click on the links that interest you most or follow the instructions below to contact me to schedule an appointment. In the event that you are interested in receiving a consultation and/or services from a spiritual approach, I encourage you to visit my other website, forgivepraylove.com to learn more.

As a new clinician, I am concerned that I am going to choose the wrong clinical supervisor. 

This is a valid concern because there are some clinical supervisors who can become vindictive if you do not do exactly what they want you to do, or that will become upset if you try to talk to them about your concerns or even try to make a change. As long as it doesn’t get to this point, remember, you can learn just as much from a bad supervisor as you can from a good one. My advice is to meet with several potential clinical supervisors and don’t base your decision solely on money. Remember, you have an expectation that you are paid for your services, so it’s reasonable that you should value your supervisor for their time too. You will know when you get the right supervisor for you, even if there are bumps in the road along the way. Every client who participates in therapy feels those bumps at times too. Take it slow and you will find the right supervisor for you when the time is right. 

I need a supervisor to complete my CRC certification. 

I am qualified to be a supervisor nationwide because of I possess the Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC) credential. The current language typically states that the supervisor is required to be a faculty member with a CRC at the university through which you complete your internships or an “on-site” supervisor who has a CRC. This language is not entirely clear when they say, “on-site” and it may change to include supervision that includes video, so that may be a question that we can ask on a case-by-case basis if you are unable to find a CRC to provide supervision. I do not accept interns to see clients within my private practice and my fees for CRC supervision are the same as for those who are seeking clinical supervision or consultation. 

SCHEDULE YOUR CONSULTATION TODAY

Nothing is more important than finding the peace that you deserve. Schedule your consultation today. Wellness is just around the corner.

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