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Effective Delegation and Supervision


In a nursing setting, effective delegation and supervision are important components. Unsurprisingly, using unlicensed assistive personnel (UAP) in healthcare facilities has increased in recent years and has positively and negatively impacted nursing practice (Mueller & Vogelsmeier, 2017). When UAPs are properly assigned tasks, it will help nurses reduce their workload. However, the main concern is UAP’s knowledge, skills, and how it comprehends the responsibilities delegated to it. Therefore, this essay explores how the delegation process can be used to gauge UAP’s level of readiness for a task delegation and how the five rights can be utilized in the case study scenario. A review of the state nursing practice statute and a discussion of the state’s rules regarding delegation to UAP will also be covered.

Delegation Process for Evaluating UAP’s Readiness

Five key steps are involved in the delegation process. These steps include assessment and planning, communication, surveillance and supervision, evaluation, and feedback. The UAP’s readiness for delegated tasks can be evaluated, provided Shawn uses the delegation process as a framework. It is advisable first to assess the UAP’s knowledge, skills, and abilities, which will thus enable him to perform the delegated task. In addition, the patient’s condition should be considered to check for task complexity and the potential risks associated with delegating the task. Afterward, Shawn has to communicate the task openly to the UAP and ensure they apprehend their roles and duties. In addition, he should ensure that the UAP is competent and comfortable with the task. For this reason, Shawn must provide the UAP with the necessary information, equipment, and supplies to perform the delegated task safely and effectively.

Shawn should provide surveillance and supervision to the UAP during the delegation process. This can be achieved by ensuring he observes the UAP performing the task and providing immediate feedback if necessary (National Council of State Boards of Nursing, 2016). He must be readily available to handle any concerns or answer any questions that UAP may have. When the UAP completes the delegated task, Shawn must be ready to evaluate the performance of UAPs and the patient’s outcomes. Afterward, he will be required to provide feedback to the UAP, and his report should recognize UAP’s strengths and areas for improvement.

Application of Five Rights

The delegation’s five rights comprise the right task, the right circumstance, the right person, the right communication, and the proper supervision. In this case, Shawn is more concerned about the UAP’s degree of expertise, talents, and comprehension of their role obligations, which raises questions regarding the importance of the proper person’s aspect (Mueller & Vogelsmeier, 2017). To ensure that the UAP is the right person for the task, Shawn can assess their competence and experience, provide adequate training and supervision, and monitor their performance closely. The right communication element is also crucial, and Shawn should communicate the task’s expectations, limitations, and desired outcomes to the UAP.

Guidance Provided by State Nurse Practice Act

The state nurse practice act guides delegation to UAP. In Illinois, the nurse practice act allows registered nurses to delegate tasks to UAP if the assignment is within the UAP’s scope of practice, the UAP is knowledgeable to accomplish it safely and effectively, and the RN provides adequate supervision and evaluation of the task (Illinois Compiled Statutes, 2019). The act also requires RNs to assess and document the UAP’s competence and to provide ongoing education and training to ensure safe and effective performance. The nurse practice act emphasizes the importance of accountability and responsibility for delegating tasks to UAP.


Effective delegation and supervision are critical components of nursing practice that ensure safe and effective patient care, efficient use of resources, and a positive work environment. The delegation process and applying the five rights provide a framework for delegating tasks to UAP safely and effectively. The state nurse practice act guides delegation to UAP and emphasizes the importance of maintaining accountability and responsibility for delegating tasks. Nurses must be knowledgeable about delegation and supervision and continue educating themselves on evidence-based practices to provide safe and effective patient care.


Illinois Compiled Statutes. (2019) professions, occupations, and business operations (225 ilcs 90/) Illinois physical therapy Act.

Mueller, C., & Vogelsmeier, A. (2017). Effective delegation: Understanding responsibility, authority, and accountability. Journal of Nursing Regulation, 4(3), 20-27.

National Council of State Boards of Nursing. (2016). National guidelines for nursing delegation. Journal of Nursing Regulation, 7(1), 5-14.


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