The CPSO, through its various Committees or policies, may require a physician’s practice to be supervised for a variety of reasons. For example:
- The Registration Committee may direct supervision when a physician is missing qualification for full registration.
- The Quality Assurance Committee or Inquiries Complaints and Reports Committee may require supervision when an assessment or investigation of a physician’s practice identified patient safety concerns or the need for practice improvement.
- The CPSO’s Ensuring Competence: Changing Scope of Practice and/or Re-entering Practice policy typically requires clinical supervision as part of a series of steps towards independent practice.
Having available supervisors in each medical discipline ensures that physicians are able to meet their CPSO requirements. Prior experience with graduate or undergraduate medical education as well as with CPSO investigations or peer assessments is considered an asset.
What does being a supervisor involve?
Each supervisory relationship has its own unique requirements. Generally, supervision involves the following:
- Reviewing charts at a prescribed frequency;
- Discussing with the supervised physician any concerns arising from the chart reviews and making recommendations for practice improvements and ongoing professional development;
- Submitting written reports to the CPSO at prescribed intervals or more frequently if there is a risk to patient safety;
- Facilitating the educational program set out in the Individualized Education Plan (IEP); and
- Less often, directly observing patient encounters or interviews with colleagues and staff.
Supervisors typically have a minimum of five current and consecutive years of experience in the scope of practice to be supervised and have adequate knowledge of the area in which they supervise. There are additional supervision requirements, including acceptable investigative and assessment history with the CPSO, sufficient time and resources necessary to carry out the supervision, as well as no real or perceived conflict of interest with the supervised physician. Specific requirements may vary depending on the nature and specific requirements of the supervision.
The time commitment that is required depends on the unique supervisory arrangement and will often include reviewing background material, chart reviews, discussions with the physician, report writing, and travel time.
For more information, you may refer to the Guidelines of College-directed Supervision.
If you are interested in becoming a Clinical Supervisor, you may contact us at ClinicalSupervisorInquiries@cpso.on.ca.
Thank you for considering this opportunity to participate in medical regulation and education.