Perceptions of Supervisors of Peer Support Workers (PSW) in Behavioral Health: Results from a National Survey

Dana Foglesong, Amy B. Spagnolo, Rita Cronise, Joanne Forbes, Peggy Swarbrick, Jonathan P. Edwards, Carlos Pratt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This content analysis of open-ended survey responses compares and contrasts perceptions on supervision from supervisors with experience providing direct peer support services (PS) and supervisors without experience providing direct peer support services (NPS).A 16-item online survey was distributed via the National Association of Peer Supporters (N.A.P.S.) listserv and through peer networks and peer run organizations. Responses from 837 respondents, across 46 US states, were analyzed. Four open ended questions assessed supervisors’ perceptions on differences supervising peer support workers (PSW) as compared to other staff, important qualities of PSW supervisors, roles when supervising a PSW, and concerns about PSWs in the organization. Among NPS and PS, three major differences in themes emerged: the knowledge required of supervisors, understanding of the role of the PSW, and supervisors’ beliefs regarding PSW competencies. PS have a more nuanced understanding of the peer support worker role and the impact of lived experience in the role.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalCommunity Mental Health Journal
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Keywords

  • Attitudes of supervisors of peer support workers
  • Peer supervision
  • Peer support worker
  • Role of the supervisor of peer support workers
  • Supervision of peer support worker

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