Work Load as an AP

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firegal
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Work Load as an AP

Post by firegal » Wed Jan 15, 2014 2:00 pm

This is going to seem like a bit of a weird one- I don't have enough work to do!!!!!!!!

I am a full time AP working across 2 units, one of them I'm only there 1 day a week so I can usually find things. However, the other place I am present 4 days a week and now a new computer system has been brought in that has replaced a portion of my work, leaving me frequently at a loose end. I have brought this up with my supervisor but he just laughs and says he's sure he can find plenty for me to do, but I've brought it up every week for 3 weeks now and nothing is forthcoming (I only see him 1-2 days a week).

I have been trying to see this as a good thing and spend more time on the floor observing how staff interact with patients and general behaviours, I have also tried to spend some more 1:1 time with the patients themselves, but a lot of the time I am just wandering around feeling like I'm not doing much of use, and then the things I am asked to do I'm uncertain as to whether I'm really qualified to do them. For example, twice now I have administered a WMS without my supervisor ever having seen me conduct an assessment, I know AP's often do administer these, but I would have thought that I'd need to be observed at least once to make sure I'm doing it right. I also end up writing the reports from the assessments with very little discussion with my supervisor, and although I obviously never provide reports directly (I always email them to him first for him to review and edit) I never get any feedback either beyond "It's fine".

I like the team I work with, I like the patients, but I really am not sure whether I'm getting the "right" experience as an AP at the moment.

aspiringpsych
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Re: Work Load as an AP

Post by aspiringpsych » Wed Jan 15, 2014 3:00 pm

.

Alex
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Re: Work Load as an AP

Post by Alex » Wed Jan 15, 2014 10:16 pm

I have found that it can take time for the work load to build up when new and sometimes supervisors are not always in a rush to get things going. You could ask him about the plans he has for your work load? (despite that they haven't materialized) To follow up your request. Can you suggest things that can be implemented like a group? Or is there audit or service evaluation that would be beneficial for the service?

It does sound like your supervisor is being lax with things. It is normal for them to OK reports without too much input. However to not even observe you completing the WMS considering you are an AP is not good practice to me. I would leave it for a couple more weeks to give him time to response to your requests/needs. If it clear by then, you have no option really apart to be assertive with him about your concerns if you want things to change (it will be good practice for when you are on training!).

Also, I wonder if you go to any departmental psychology meetings to network with other psychologists and see if there are any initiatives or research you can get involved in.
Last edited by BenJMan on Thu Jan 16, 2014 10:10 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Edited to avoid trying to guess the users workplace

Alex
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Re: Work Load as an AP

Post by Alex » Wed Jan 15, 2014 10:19 pm

I am assuming aspringpsych is just reflecting back how you feel your workload is :D

lizzabadger
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Re: Work Load as an AP

Post by lizzabadger » Thu Jan 16, 2014 9:53 am

How about drawing up a list of things you can do when you're not busy, e.g. research, audit, reading up on relevant therapies and assessment methods, producing some staff training, writing a manual about how to do your job, reorganising the filing etc. etc.

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Gilly
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Re: Work Load as an AP

Post by Gilly » Thu Jan 16, 2014 10:20 am

Just a really quick post by myself as im about to run out - but also have a think about spending some time visiting other units - do you have any inpatient or specialist units that you could contact to see if they run open days or you could go and visit them?

Are there any voluntary agencies like the alzheimers society, mind or rethink that run local centres you can go and visit?
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firegal
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Re: Work Load as an AP

Post by firegal » Thu Jan 16, 2014 11:27 am

Thanks for all the suggestions guys, it's so hard sometimes with it being the first AP post, even 5 months in I'm still always wondering whether things are "normal" or not.

With the writing reports from assessments that's where I tend to get confused, only because I know that interpretation of results is generally the thing that is meant to be provided by qualified psychs only, but the reports I'm asked to write include a lot of interpretation and recommendations. I don't know, maybe lots gets changed, but I haven't seen a report post-editing yet.

Anyway, I am doing plenty of reading, good to hear that recommended because again I was a little worried that maybe it was just wasting what could be useful interaction time. Reading is providing some useful food for thought and good practice of my research finding skills as there is a sparsity of information with regards to therapeutic intervention with people with LD, and what is out there tends to focus on those with mild LD and communication skills beyond those of the people I work with. Though I've just found some stuff on relaxation techniques that might be applicable.

Alex- I'd love to attend a departmental meeting and meet more CPs but the psych dept is me and my supervisor.

Gilly- Good idea! I was actually in contact with an AP at forensic unit and we were discussing some visits but that dropped off the radar over Christmas, time for an email methinks.

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firegal
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Re: Work Load as an AP

Post by firegal » Thu Jan 16, 2014 11:41 am

No sooner had I written the last post than the phone rang and the unit manager has tasked me with a quite interesting and probably lengthy job. Yay :D

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