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March 2, 1940

Supervision in Public Health Nursing

JAMA. 1940;114(9):824. doi:10.1001/jama.1940.02810090102029

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Every public health nurse should read Violet Hodgson's new book and for every supervisor or administrator concerned with public health nursing the book is an essential. The basic theme underlying this work is that successful supervision is based on democratic principles and that the exercise of arbitrary authority fails to secure the best performance from the staff nurse. One would hardly venture to disagree with this principle: it is idealistic and in keeping with our national philosophy. Yet we owe, in modern nursing, much to the traditional military system of organization, which has given us an understanding of the importance of clear lines of responsibility and authority. In stating the ideal democratic basis for supervision in public health nursing Mrs. Hodgson has perhaps overstressed its case. The two chapters dealing with the teaching function of the supervisor are excellent and give a proper emphasis to this phase of the supervisor's

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