What is Social Work?
Social workers provide direct contact to patients and those in their life to minimise the impacts of illness and hospitalisation. A social worker’s role is to enhance social and emotional functioning through interventions and linking to services and supports that may be available (Australian Association of Social Work, 2020)
Social Work in the Spinal Injuries Unit
Social Workers in the Spinal Injuries Unit provide support to you, your family and significant people in your life in your adjustment to spinal cord injury and hospital admission and prepare you for your transition back to the community. We work with you, your family and the interdisciplinary team to help you to set and work towards your goals for your rehabilitation. The Social Work team provide this support in some of the following ways:
- Undertake psychosocial assessments to identify the impact of spinal cord injury and hospitalisation on you and your family’s life and to identify ways for you to manage this.
- Provide various types of therapeutic interventions and counselling (grief and loss, adjustment, relationship etc.) to you and your family to support adjustment and coping related to your spinal cord injury and hospital admission.
- Enable you and your significant others to navigate various systems in order to access appropriate supports, benefits and entitlements. This can involve planning and coordinating your rehabilitation and discharge process with your team, liaising with public and private agencies such as insurers, funding bodies (e.g. NDIS, NIISQ, My Aged Care), solicitors, home support agencies and other government departments.