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An analysis of contemporary issues for leaders in healthcare education: achieving praxis and closing the theory practice divideIn his executive summary of the Report of the Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust Public Inquiry, Frances (2013) insists that "a list should be drawn up of all the qualities generally considered necessary for a good and effective leader. This in turn could inform a list of competencies a leader would be expected to have" (Frances, 2013, p108). While Frances does not specify educational leaders in his report, they are fundamental in the development of the future workforce through role modelling of the much hailed '6 C's' and therefore impact the patient experience (AACN, 2012; Frances, 2013). In this paper I will address the dilemmas faced by educational leaders engaged in healthcare education. One such dilemma is academic drift or the valuing and greater uptake of academic practices at the expense of vocational qualifications and practices (Edwards and Miller, 2008 p36). Another dilemma is the move from vocational to academic training, and then forward to a degree threshold profession due to various political drivers, in professions such as operating department practice (ODP). Other dilemmas that will be addressed include the paradigm shift created by change management strategies that employ the vocationally trained clinical assessors to support students enrolled in degree level study (Hauxwell, 2010).