Psychiatric Social Worker and Community Mental Health
Although the community mental health movement continues to be strong and vital, problems associated with deinstitutionalization and the homeless have begun to reshape thinking on the care of the disorder. More realistic for the future would be for public psychiatric hospitals to work together with local community mental health movements is then committed. These services include everything from outpatient psychiatric clinics to day centers and half way homes that provide a bridge between the psychiatric hospital and the community. As a new federal initiative has recognized, it is vitally important that the needs of the chronically mental ill, be met in a community setting. Prior experience has taught us that community treatment of the mentally ill is no cheaper than hospitalization if it done correctly.
Social workers who qualified to engage in psychotherapy were Psychiatric Social Workers today the term more frequently used is clinical Social Worker. Clinical Social Worker should have the ability to gather information make assessment intervention plans, execute the intervention, evaluate the results and terminate the relationship with client. Psychiatric Social Workers knowledge of the community and its resources is an important and unique contribution made by Psychiatric Social Worker to the mental illness as well as other human social problems. An understanding and sensitive to the culture of life style of diverse group is another contribution made by Social Worker to the mental health setting. Most important of all are the Psychiatric Social Workers professional values.
The ability to work as a team is important skill for Psychiatric Social Workers: A traditional mental health professional team consists of a psychiatrist, a psychologist, a psychiatric nurses and Psychiatric Social Worker. These Psychiatric Social Workers have special knowledge pertaining to community resources and generally obtain a social history of a patient which assists the team in assuring at a diagnoses and a treatment plan Psychiatric Social Workers make up over half of the mental health professionals in involving them in all the process because of their unique ability to work with client’s families and home communities.
Psychiatric Social Workers in community mental health setting clearly need an understanding of mental illness classification system that is currently in use.