1. There is a lack of research on AHP leadership in academia, with most guidance documents focusing on clinical settings.
2. AHPs face challenges transitioning from clinical practice to academic roles and may struggle to see pathways to leadership positions.
3. Despite being the third largest workforce in the NHS, AHPs are often poorly understood and their potential for transforming healthcare is not fully harnessed.
The article "AHP leadership in academia: opportunities, challenges and current positioning" aims to explore the perceptions of key stakeholders regarding the current position of Allied Health Professionals (AHPs) in leadership roles within higher education. The literature review highlights a lack of research on AHP leadership in academia, with most guidance documents focusing on increasing leadership roles in clinical settings. The article notes that AHPs are the third largest workforce in the NHS, but their contributions to outcomes are often poorly understood.
The article presents some potential barriers and challenges for AHPs to undertake leadership roles within higher education, such as the mid-career transition from expert clinician to academic role, pressure to complete a doctorate and be research active, reluctance to let go of prior identity as a clinical practitioner, and limited pathways into leadership roles. However, it also notes that nursing colleagues appear more willing to take on leadership roles and suggests that AHPs may have much to learn from them.
One potential bias in the article is its focus solely on AHPs and not considering other healthcare professions' experiences with transitioning into academic roles or taking on leadership positions. Additionally, while the article acknowledges some potential barriers for AHPs in academia, it does not provide evidence or data to support these claims.
The article also promotes developmental opportunities for individuals to reach senior positions but does not address systemic issues that may prevent AHPs from achieving these positions. For example, there is no mention of institutional biases or discrimination against certain groups that may limit their access to leadership positions.
Overall, while the article provides some insights into the challenges facing AHPs in academia and their potential for transformative healthcare outcomes, it would benefit from a more comprehensive analysis of systemic issues affecting diversity and inclusion in academic leadership positions.