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    Rights statement: The final, definitive version of this article has been published in the Journal, Journal of Social Work, ? (?), 2020, © SAGE Publications Ltd, 2020 by SAGE Publications Ltd at the Journal of Social Work page: https://journals.sagepub.com/home/jsw on SAGE Journals Online: http://journals.sagepub.com/

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Hospital-based social workers’ perceptions of generalist- and specialist-level palliative social work activities

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

E-pub ahead of print
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>16/03/2020
<mark>Journal</mark>Journal of Social Work
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print
Early online date16/03/20
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Summary: A social work advisory group recently proposed 41 generalist-level palliative social work activities applicable to any venue, including hospital-based social work, but this applicability has not been empirically tested. Therefore, we used critical realist grounded theory analysis of qualitative interviews to explore whether the activities proposed by the advisory group reflect inpatient social workers’ perceptions of their generalist-level palliative activities when caring for patients alongside specialist-level palliative social workers. Fourteen Masters educated social workers from six hospitals in the Midwest United States participated. Corresponding concepts from interview data of hospital-based social workers’ perceptions of what facilitates or hinders collaboration with specialist-level palliative social workers were identified and mapped onto the 41 generalist-level palliative social work activities. We used NVivo to organize and track data. Findings: Inpatient social workers find it challenging to engage in specific generalist-level palliative social work activities; provision of generalist-level palliative services is shaped by discharge planning duties, the consultation model, and the concentrated role of specialist-level palliative social workers. Competency in cultural and spiritual aspects of care could be lacking. Applications: Most of the 41 generalist-level palliative social work activities are present in hospital-based social workers’ clinical practice. However, not all activities may be applicable or realizable in the inpatient venue. In the hospital, an emphasis on discharge planning and related time-barriers can mean seriously ill patients and their families lack access to generalist-level palliative social work services. Clarification is needed about which of the 41 activities are relevant to and actionable within the inpatient venue. © The Author(s) 2020.

Bibliographic note

The final, definitive version of this article has been published in the Journal, Journal of Social Work, ? (?), 2020, © SAGE Publications Ltd, 2020 by SAGE Publications Ltd at the Journal of Social Work page: https://journals.sagepub.com/home/jsw on SAGE Journals Online: http://journals.sagepub.com/