What is the role of the social worker in relation to other members of a multidisciplinary team?
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"Social work is a profession for those with a strong desire to help improve people’s lives. Social workers assist people by helping them cope with issues in their everyday lives, deal with their relationships, and solve personal and family problems. Some social workers help clients who face a disability or a life-threatening disease or a social problem, such as inadequate housing, unemployment, or substance abuse. Social workers also assist families that have serious domestic conflicts, sometimes involving child or spousal abuse. Some social workers conduct research, advocate for improved services, engage in systems design or are involved in planning or policy development. Many social workers specialize in serving a particular population or working in a specific setting."
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2008-09 Edition, Social Workers, on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos060.htm (visited October 30, 2008).
It sounds as if you are asking more specifically about the role a social worker plays in the educational setting (for example, as a member of an IEP team in special education.) In this regard, a social worker helps a student identify and deal with problems that are affecting his or her ability to learn. These may be either disabilities such as an emotional disturbance, or factors affecting the student's family (poverty, alcoholism, abuse). They work in conjunction with the general and special education teachers and guidance counselors. A social worker may also work with the student's family, helping a parent to access resources in the community.
In addition to an educational setting, social workers work within cities and communities as part a county social services program (government funded- Department of Human Services).
Multi-displinary in this situation could include: medical providers, employment counselors, administators, and the social worker(s) who actually meet with the client and see to it that the client is connected to all the resources available.
Multi-displinary simply means a team of professionals that because of their specific areas of expertise can provide a more comprehensive "care" plan to help their clients.
Multi-Disciplinary teams are a team of proffesionals that because of specific areas of expertise can provide a more comprehensive care plan to clients. The role of a social worker is a proffessional who is committed to working alongside social services,to protect and promote the welfare of children,young people,families and the community. Other members of the team may include doctors,nurses,school teachers,advocates,physcologists,councellors,phyciatrists.
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