Social Services LMSW
Dealing with illness can be difficult for patients and loved ones. Our goal is to empower the patient, improving the quality of their life, by ensuring that reliable, consistent support services are available. Social Workers help ensure that patients attend follow-up appointments, receive appropriate healthcare, and/or arrange delivery of free meals tailored to the individual's medical conditions.
What are Social Services and how do they help patients?
An experienced, licensed Master Social Worker (MSW) leads our Social Services department in providing patients and families with help in decision-making, problem solving, adjusting, and obtaining needed services. Social Workers conduct home visits to help determine patient’s physical, mental and social needs. They help educate patients and families, connect with community resources and long term planning.
The most important thing we do is to be truly present with people. We bring knowledge, skills, compassion, and active listening. We witness people’s physical and emotional pain without abandoning them. In addition, we provide a safe setting for people to share their struggles, joys, regrets, and fears.
How can you qualify to receive Social Services?
Social Services are available to most people who qualify for Medicare. Some Medicaid patients also qualify. Call us to inquire about private insurance. After a patient is admitted, a Social Worker may conduct an assessment by visiting the patient to help determine patient needs and identify any limitations, barriers, or issues that might impede recovery.
How can patients and caregivers best communicate with the social worker?
Many people do not know that a social worker is available to them, usually at no cost. The key to communicating with the social worker is to meet face to face. Your nurse will be able to order social services or call our office to request social services. The sooner that patients or caregivers meet with a social worker, the more they are likely to benefit.
Social Services and Care Coordination
Care coordination is a patient centered, evidence based, collaborative approach, in which a Social Worker and client develop and implement a plan of care that addresses the client’s needs. Effective coordination can decrease health care costs, promote better outcomes, and fill gaps in fragmented care.
Collaboration between Social Services and the Physician
Providers are recognizing that team effort is essential for effective patient care coordination and provider survival. As a team member, the Social Worker may help to fill care gaps when other providers are unable to do so. The social worker is a valuable resource who enhances and improves delivery of healthcare. The social worker can assist the patient to navigate the healthcare system. Consistent communication is required between the healthcare provider and social worker to ensure effective coordination of care. Social workers are the link between the physician and the family, enabling understanding of the patient within their cultural and spiritual contexts.