Six Killer LPC Clinical Supervision Tricks

Six Killer LPC Clinical Supervision Tricks

LPC Clinical Supervision has become increasingly complex. Telemental health, digital information hacks and HIPAA laws for counselors make this even more complicated. Let’s make it simple. Here are 6 Killer LPC Clinical Supervision Tricks for simplifying that side of your therapy practice.

These are generally applicable tips, but some will apply to the APC LPC supervision process in the state of Georgia which is where I practice and provide supervision.

1) Stay in Your Lane

You don’t have to be experienced with every clinical situation your supervisee may encounter. None of us know everything. Still, there are simple and practical guidelines for choosing LAPC supervisees that are within your area of competence.

For example, some counseling specialties have unique legal considerations. This is particularly true with child and adolescent populations. You may have child psychotherapy experience, but unless this is a specialty area it may not be possible to competently train and mentor your supervisee.

Each state has unique reporting laws and a host of legal issues related to work with children and adolescents. You need an understanding of how both criminal and civil law impact your psychotherapy. The same goes for geriatric psychotherapy. A thorough understanding of medical conditions related to aging is required.None of us can know every clinical specialty. It is expected that your supervisee may be more knowledgeable than you in certain areas. There are many general principles of clinical intervention that are common such as teaching them triage or assessment, screening and referral. Consult with colleagues. Teach your supervisee how to become an expert in their specialty.

2) Develop a Solid Written Contract.

Holding a state license to practice psychotherapy is a serious matter. It is a privilege–not a right. It is important you convey this fact to your supervisees in your written contract. In Georgia, APCs and lpcs share the same scope of practice. The primary difference is that as a licensed APC you must be under direction and supervision simultaneously during all periods of active psychotherapy practice.

In contrast, LMSW and LCSW scopes of practice differ. Your APC supervisees have taken the same oath as you when you were issued your LPC. Both of you are held accountable for your licenses in the same manner by the Composite Board of Professional Counselors, Social Workers and Marriage and Family Therapists.

The spirit of your supervision contract should convey, ‘You have been issued a license and you can lose it. It is therefore in your best interest to invest in your supervision with me and be teachable.’ Some supervisees may find this intimidating, but it is critical for you to impress upon them immediately this enormous responsibility they have to the public.

+ More: Free Fully-Editable Supervision Contract in MS Word Format.

3) Clear and Explicit Financial Arrangements

One of the best ways of avoiding licensing board complaints is by minimizing financial disagreements with colleagues and your clients. Keep a contemporaneous record of supervision dates and periodically compare these with your supervisees’ records to be sure they match.

If there is a disagreement on hours or monies owed, work together towards an agreeable solution. Taking these steps will also minimize the chances of the board auditing your supervision records.

4) Obtain Copies of Supervisees’ License Application and Supervision or Directed Experience Forms

It is important to verify all information pertinent to the APC application, work settings and supervision prior to rendering supervision. By obtaining copies of related documents, you can avoid unexpected scenarios such as inadvertently supervising when the APC isn’t actually employed (yes, it can happen).

By having this documentation you can know the names of all individuals directly involved with the services your supervisee is providing. Finally, this information will enable you to determine your LAPC’s remaining licensing requirements even if they are not under your supervision for the duration of their pursuit for licensure.

5) Avoid Conflicts of Interest

If possible, avoid engaging a supervisee who is also your employee, subordinate or where there is a power differential. While not impossible, as board rules change this scenario is becoming increasingly fraught with problems.

You shouldn’t be paying each other for services and if you are simultaneously their director or employer that is what’s happening.

+ More: When Your Supervisor is Unethical

6) Telemental Health and Distance Supervision

If you don’t have experience delivering distance counseling, it is best not to supervise an APC who is actively developing a telemental practice. Again: stay in your lane.

Mastering LPC Clinical Supervision

In summary:

Stay in Your Lane

Develop a Solid Written Contract

Clear and Explicit Financial Arrangements

Obtain Copies of Supervisees’ License Application and Supervision or Directed Experience Forms

If you want to train in telemental health methods, have experience.

Downloads for Therapists

Dear Workshop Attendees and Peers:

As described in my supervision workshop, the most important concept applies to all three GA Composite Board licensing specialties: we have two essential relationships with our supervisees: we are supervisor/supervisee  but also licensed peers and therefore are both responsible for maintaining our respective licenses.

Here is more helpful information about and my Ethics: Understanding and Avoiding Board Complaints 5 hours NBCC workshop.The diagnose law SB 319 is very convoluted and awkwardly written. Also, sections of that law are probably unenforceable as they conflict with statutory powers granted to many of the state of Georgia healthcare boards including what is the law of Composite Board of PC SW and MFT.  Based upon board experience, rules that will be passed by the Composite Board may be consequently repealed and replaced.

I did not include a download link for the Financial Arrangements Agreement because it actually is very brief: be certain it covers fees, consequences and charges for late cancellation, forms of payment. You may opt to offer a different fee structure for advance payment of multiple sessions but design that carefully as it could result in a financial disagreement.

Form Fillable PDF:Application for LPC Supervision

Florida Registered Healthcare Provider Application

Sample Approval Letter- Florida Out-Of-State Registration

Blank Course Evaluation