A social worker will work closely with patients and their families to assess and treat a myriad of issues, and to help in understanding and coping with emotional and social problems of various natures. Excellent communication skills are integral to the job, as the social worker must be able to facilitate education, work with support groups, and provide referrals to patients. The employee will have the resources and research abilities to find information that is relevant to issues particular to a patient’s case and disseminate that information in a way that the patient and his or her family can understand. A social worker must have good time management and organization skills to maintain a caseload and sufficiently document cases as patients are reevaluated at appropriate intervals throughout their treatment. The worker will be the patient’s advocate and will provide the patient with resources that can help in dealing with his or her issues and learning to function as a normal member of society. Education requirements typically include a master’s degree in social work (MSW), and a social worker must be licensed in the state of employment or must be able to obtain a license before the first day of work. An applicant should be able to work with people of all walks of life, and be comfortable with a diverse patient base as the issues that strike patients do not discriminate on any basis. Knowledge of other languages is helpful for a social worker, but is not a requirement for employment.
Social Worker Tasks
- Gather relevant information pertaining to case issues.
- Facilitate education, support groups and referrals.
- Maintain caseload, documentation and reevaluate patients at appropriate intervals.
- Assess and treat patients and their families in understanding and coping with emotional and social problems.
- Provide advocacy and resource services for the patient.