Social Work research
The former Patient and Family Services Department at The Alfred devolved some of its services to become ‘Acute Social Work’ managed by Bridget Wall, who also oversees the Aboriginal Health Liaison Officer Program and Pastoral Care.
The research agenda of Acute Social Work is dominated by collaborative projects, which include:
- A collaboration between The Alfred and The Epworth Social Work teams looking at the impact of translocation stress in patients and families moving from an acute to rehabilitation setting
- A collaboration with the OT Department on patient-centered goal setting in acquired brain injury and strategies for patient and family engagement. Social Work undertook a focus in the ICU setting
- A collaboration with The Alfred Burns Unit on the identification of the psychosocial issues of burns patients presenting to a level 1 Burns Centre and implications for healthcare outcomes
- Evaluation of the new Health Legal Partnership based in the Social Work Department, which has afforded the opportunity for a research partnership with The Michael Kirby Centre, Monash University
- A joint project with multiple Social Work departments in health care settings across Victoria and the University of Melbourne, to evidence and document specific social work interventions
The department continues to engage Associate Professor Lou Harms from the University of Melbourne in a consultancy arrangement. Individual social work research projects are also under way in the cancer, trauma, general medicine and infectious diseases areas.
- Sue De Bono (Social Work) was awarded an Alfred Health Small Project Grant in collaboration with Lynda Katona (Psychology) and Dr Sharon Avery (Haematology) to undertake an RCT evaluatingan intervention to reduce psychological distress and improve coping and quality of life in hemopoietic stem cell transplant patients.
Bridget Wall awarded $5,000, from the Australian Association of Social Workers, to Lyra Taylor for a grant to undertake an evaluation of the role of acute Social Workers in the HeLP service – a health legal partnership with Maurice Blackburn.