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Supervision Standard of Practice PDF


The physiotherapist is responsible and accountable for the physiotherapy services provided by personnel working under her/his supervision (supervisees).

Expected outcome

Clients can expect that they are informed of the role of supervisees and that the services provided by supervisees are supervised by the physiotherapist.

Performance expectations

The physiotherapist:

  • Assigns only those tasks/activities that he/she is competent to perform.
  • Assesses the knowledge and skills of supervisees, and assigns only those tasks/activities that fall within the supervisee’s competence.
  • Communicates to clients the roles, responsibilities, and accountability of supervisees participating in the delivery of physiotherapy services.
  • Uses mechanisms (e.g., name tags, introduction) so that supervisees are readily identifiable.
  • Assesses clients to determine those appropriate to receive services from supervisees, assigns tasks, and supervises accordingly and in compliance with applicable regulatory requirements.
  • Obtains clients’ informed consent for the delivery of services by supervisees.
  • Employs supervision strategies (direct and indirect) to maintain client safety and the provision of quality care which take into account the competence of the supervisee, the client care needs, and other factors related to the practice environment.
  • Establishes ongoing communication processes with supervisees.
  • Monitors documentation by supervisees to confirm that this documentation is in accordance with regulatory requirements.
  • Monitors and evaluates the delivery of services by supervisees.
  • Reassesses clients, monitors outcomes, documents, and reassigns service delivery as determined by clients’ needs.
  • Complies with and is aware of legislative and regulatory rules regarding assignment of physiotherapy services, including restricted activities, to physiotherapy students and physiotherapist interns.
  • Refrains from assigning the following activities to unregulated health providers in supervisee roles:
    • Restricted activities authorized to physiotherapists through relevant provincial legislation
    • Interpretation of referrals, diagnosis or prognosis
    • Interpretation of assessment findings and determination of treatment procedures and treatment goals and the planning, development or modification of treatment plans
    • Initial discussion of treatment rationale, clinical findings and prognosis with clients
    • Documentation that should be completed by the physiotherapist
    • Discharge planning
    • Any task or procedure that requires continuous clinical judgment (i.e., interventions that include an evaluative component that immediately influences the client’s treatment plan)
  • Reassigns the supervision of supervisees when the physiotherapist is not available to supervise.
  • Advises clients and employers that delivery of physiotherapy services by supervisees must be discontinued when the physiotherapist is no longer involved in client care.

Related Standards

Page updated: 03/01/2024