Medical Social Work

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JOOTRH medical social work department is led by a senior officer supported by a team of
contracted staff, casual workers, and volunteers. The department deals with social-related issues.
The department always conducts fieldwork and follow-ups to help them improve their services to
their patients.

The department is focused on two main objectives:
 To enable socially challenged patients/clients to access health services through
appropriate recommendations. They do this by first finding out the difficulty in social
situations the patients have (for example personality, injury or illness, and lack of social
skills) then they come up with solutions or appropriate recommendations for the patients.
Patients without social skills can be educated for them or to acquire the skills.
 To provide equal opportunity to all patients/clients. They offer to listen and understand
the patients so that the patients can see a sense of belonging and acceptance no matter
what situation they are in at the moment.
The department deals with more than 9,000 cases yearly which come from about 75% of the
patients who visit the JOOTRH. Out of the number, 65% -75% of the cases are of abandoned
children who need serious care.
The department offers 8 hours of services from Monday to Friday. The employees are equipped
with the following skills:

 Communication skills both verbal and non-verbal for communicating with a
wide range of patients
 Empathy skills for identifying and understanding another patient’s experience
and point of view
 Organization skills for proper scheduling and planning of their activities to
prioritize for the patients
 Critical thinking skills for analyzing and interpreting information from the
patients and coming up with an appropriate solution where needed
 Active listening skills for active listening to the patient’s story or information
and getting the whole information.
 Patience for coping with the patients

The department deals with issues involving abandoned babies with special needs. The issues
are solved through social work approach where case management techniques are applied.
The process includes:

 Coordinating with the children's department to provide the children with care and
protection support.
 Tracing of the whereabouts of the respective relatives. This involved looking at
records of the mothers of the children to know to trace their locations.

 Placement of the children into children’s home. The department contacted different
children's homes to request if they could place the abandoned children there for
protection and care.
 Integrate back to the community to find out whatever information they know about
the abandoned children including respective relatives or are they willing to adopt

Duties and responsibilities of the department
 Social inquiry on destitute patients. They do this by inquiring from the hospital
about those patients who have come for services at the hospital but are not able to
either afford certain treatment or services. After getting the information, solutions
such as getting the patients to apply for NHIF are initiated.
 Making investigations for placement of abandoned children. It’s done by tracing
the whereabouts of the parents, seeking support from available orphanages, and
asking volunteers from the community to adopt some of the children.
 Recommendation for needy patients. Can be done by putting them into NHIF
medical programs and even home-based care services.

 Guiding and counselling clients with social problems. Have a one-on-one talk
session with the patients where the patients communicate their problems and
experiences and the social worker comes up with a suitable solution or advice.
 Research and training. This is done through mentoring, clinical training, and
supervision to find a suitable solution for social work and community