Social Work Support

The focus of social work practice is focused primarily in addressing the psychosocial needs of the patient and family members during the process of the illness and during bereavement. These needs include the emotional, social, financial and practical aspect of care. The social worker’s task also includes educational training and promoting palliative care principles. Moreover the social workers have an important role within the multidisciplinary team, as they bring an expertise regarding individual and family dynamics, grief and loss, communication, advocacy, social benefits and community resources.
 
Referrals for social work intervention are made by the nurses during the process of the illness or after death for bereavement support. Since palliative care acknowledges the patient and significant others (whether family or not) as a unit of care, referrals for social work input are not only made to address the patient’s needs but also the needs of these individuals.
 
Social Work practice within Hospice Malta is presently being carried out by two social workers – Mr. Lawrence Agius and Ms Gloria Spiteri.