From novice to expert, and the in-between: A narrative of the evolution of a novel reflective professional development mentoring program

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Zimmerman, Peta-Anne
Macbeth, Deborough
Roy, Rita
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Introduction: Mentoring has been identified in the literature as a means of supporting the professional development of nurses and other healthcare professionals from novice to expert. The setting for most mentoring studies has been conducted in nursing faculties aiming to help the transition of new nurse educators or graduate nurses. There are no mentoring studies reported in an Infection Control setting. The aim of this report is to provide a narrative of the use and evolution of a structured professional development and mentoring model incorporating a reflective tool to facilitate novice infection prevention and control professionals to become experts within the infection control department of a large tertiary facility. Methods: A professional development program (PDP) was developed for new staff members to facilitate acquisition of knowledge and development of skills essential to their role. The structure of this program evolved in response to the demonstrated needs of participants to include a mentor-guided professional development and mentoring program (PDMP) in accordance with a framework using critical reflection, goal setting and mentor feedback. The program spanned a period of six-months with weekly assessments of the mentee’s progress towards the self-identified goals. Results: Staff who participated in the PDMP informally reported positive growth both personally and professionally in infection control. Their feedback corroborated the findings from the measurable outcomes used to demonstrate their progress. Conclusion: This pilot program has scope for replication in other healthcare settings and will aid in succession planning, a critical need in nursing and more specifically, infection control.

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Infection, Disease & Health

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Supplement 1

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Zimmerman, P-A; Macbeth, D; Roy, R, From novice to expert, and the in-between: A narrative of the evolution of a novel reflective professional development mentoring program, Infection, Disease & Health, 2018, 23 (Supplement 1), pp. S5-S6