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Multiculturalism and Social Work | San Francisco State University

Perceptions of social work intervention with bereaved clients: some implications for hospital social work practice.

Author: Lord, B; Pockett, R.,
Author Background:
Date 1998
Type Journal
Journal Title: Social Work in Health Care
Volume/Pages 27(1) 51-66
Subject Matter international social work, Australians, hospital social work, bereavement
Abstract The study focused on social work bereavement intervention in a large Australian teaching hospital comparing client and social work perceptions of the service provided. The study involved the completion of a series of questionnaires and client interviews over a three-month period. A combination of content and statistical analysis was used to interpret the findings. Eighty-eight percent of clients contacted indicated satisfaction with the social work service received. The results indicated a positive match between clients' and social workers' perceptions of the intervention, and affirmed the role of social work in bereavement care. Seventy percent of clients made recommendations regarding potential improvements to social work services. These recommendations contained four specific suggestions: that social workers be present when the doctor breaks bad news; that additional support be provided in how to talk to doctors; that social workers be involved from the point of admission of the patients; and that a primary social worker remains with the family throughout the hospital stay. These recommendations have implications for hospital social work practice in both the delivery and organizations of social work services. (Journal abstract.) .