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Special Call for Papers: Social Work Practice during Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic

Deadline: December 31, 2020

The coronavirus pandemic has created changes and challenges in how social work practice is being conducted in all areas of the health care system due to guidelines and restrictions put in place in response to the pandemic. Thus, hospice, palliative and other social workers are being tasked with supporting individuals, families, and co-workers in new, unforeseen, and creative ways. In this special issue, social workers are encouraged to share reflections about the situations, challenges and changes they are experiencing as well as the processes of new ways to connect with those in most in need of intervention. In addition, it is important that social workers’ practice self-care and so papers on approaches to doing so during this stressful time are welcome.

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Working with Families Facing Undesired Outcomes During the COVID-19 Crisis

As SWHPN gathers resources for its social workers who are facing an unprecedented time in their practice, we've issued our first tip sheet: Working with Families Facing Undesired Outcomes During the COVID-19 Crisis.

You can find tip sheets and additional tools, resources, and information on the COVID-19 Resources PagePlease share widely.

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SWHPN releases Core Curriculum for Palliative and Hospice Social Work

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What does Social Justice mean to you?

Make your voice heard by participating in a SWHPN-endorsed study on the role of social justice in hospice and palliative care. Your participation is important because social justice is a defining professional value and social justice issues are directly relevant to our field, as well as to our patients and families. The study will help identify common social injustices that social workers encounter in hospice and palliative care settings and possible strategies to address them.

The study consists of a single online survey. Your participation in the survey is completely voluntary. Should you agree to participate, you will be asked to complete a brief (10-15 minute) survey on what social justice means to you. The survey consists of two sections – the first with open-ended questions on your experience with social justice in the field, the second with a few demographics questions. Upon completion of the survey, no further actions will be requested as completing the survey constitutes full participation in the study. Participation is anonymous and will allow us to gain a better understanding of how you incorporate social justice into your practice.

This study is led by Dr. John Cagle and his team at the University of Maryland School of Social Work. Study procedures have been reviewed and approved by the University of Maryland, Baltimore IRB (#HP-00088264). If you have questions about the study, please contact Dr. Cagle (Principal Investigator) or Rachel Brandon, whose contact info is below.

To participate in this short – but important – study, please click the button here:

 
TAKE THE SURVEY

John G. Cagle, MSW, PhD
Associate Professor
University of Maryland, Baltimore
School of Social Work
525 West Redwood Street, 3W13
Baltimore, MD 21201
410-706-6106
[email protected]

Rachel Brandon
Research Team Member
University of Maryland, Baltimore
School of Social Work
525 West Redwood Street, 3W13
Baltimore, MD 21201
[email protected]

Montefiore Medical Center Announces Palliative Care Social Work Fellowship

The Palliative Care Social Work Fellowship is a one-year, full-time position from July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2021. The goal of the Fellowship is to develop specialty trained palliative care social workers who will contribute to the care of seriously ill older adults in underserved communities in New York City and become future leaders in this field.

As part of a large academic medical center, the Montefiore Palliative Care Service offers a rich environment for learning. Medical students, residents and fellows from other specialties rotate with the Palliative Care Service, as well as advanced practice nursing, social work and chaplain students.

The Fellowship includes rotations at various sites within Montefiore, including the Palliative Care Inpatient Unit, the Moses, Einstein and Wakefield Hospitals, and the outpatient Oncology and Palliative Care Clinics. If the Fellow identifies another particular area of interest, there may be an opportunity for an elective rotation. The Hospice and Palliative Medicine Program Faculty will provide ongoing supervision and mentoring in clinical and other components of the Fellowship program. Social work specific training and mentoring is provided by experienced specialist social workers at all sites.

The Fellowship provides extensive educational opportunities, including weekly didactics, interdisciplinary team meetings, journal club, research/quality improvement meetings, complex case discussions, psychosocial oncology rounds, roundtable discussions and grand rounds. The Fellow will have the opportunity to attend local palliative care conferences, as well as continuing education classes at Fordham University Graduate School of Social Service.

The Fellow will participate in a research/quality improvement project with mentoring from Dr. Cathy Berkman from Fordham University Graduate School of Social Service. The Fellow will also conduct training on generalist-level palliative care within the Montefiore Health System and to local community organizations.

The position includes a stipend and benefits. The Palliative Care Social Work Fellowship is generously funded by the Fan Fox and Leslie R. Samuels Foundation.

ELIGIBILITY

Applicants to the Montefiore Palliative Care Social Work Fellowship must:

  • have an MSW degree from a CSWE-accredited program;
  • hold a NYS social work license, or limited permit, by the start of the Fellowship;
  • demonstrate a strong commitment to a career in palliative care social work and to serving the population of older adults in New York City after completion of the Fellowship; and
  • be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.

For further information on the Fellowship or to apply, please go to the website listed below: https://www.einstein.yu.edu/departments/family-social-medicine/education/fellowships/palliative-care-social-work-fellowship-program/

Applications are due by March 15, 2020.

CMS-AAHPM MACRA Quality Measure Project

The American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine, in partnership with the National Coalition for Hospice and Palliative Care and RAND Health, is leading a three-year effort to develop patient-reported quality measures in outpatient palliative care for the CMS Quality Payment Program.

SWHPN is a member of the Coalition and is inviting programs that provide outpatient palliative care services to adult patients (and you can provide inpatient services, as long as you provide outpatient services) to consider serving as a testing site in this effort.
 
RAND Health will be leading a national field test of patient-reported items among outpatient palliative care programs, and field testing will begin in September 2019.

 
The benefits of participating as a testing site include:




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Social workers: we need your input for the HPC Workforce Study!

SWHPN is inviting its members, colleagues, and friends to participate in a research study questionnaire asking about your work experience, future plans, and professional stressors: the HPC Workforce Study. A social work-specific section is included for your input. If you work with seriously ill patients, you should consider participating in this study. This workforce survey is for all members of the interdisciplinary team.

SWHPN is proud to be participating, along with several other national organizations including AAHPM, HPNA, PAHPM and SCA/HCCN, in this important study. The results may be published as part of a Palliative Care specialty workforce series in Health Affairs.

By completing this survey, you are consenting to participate. No identifying information will be collected or reported. Other than contributing to our field's knowledge in this area, there are no other benefits to participation. The survey will take less than 15 minutes to complete, and is available here: http://www.hpcworkforcesurvey.com/

New National Guidelines Seek to Improve Access to Palliative Care for People Living with Serious Illness

New national palliative care clinical practice guidelines seek to ensure the millions of people living with serious illness, such as heart failure, lung disease and cancer, have access to vital care that can help meet their needs. The guidelines promote improved access to palliative care, which is focused on giving patients and their caregivers relief from the symptoms and stress of serious illness, is based on need, not prognosis, and can be provided along with disease-focused treatment.

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Survey: Experiences of LGBT Patients and Families in Hospice and Palliative Care

The lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community has a long history of experiencing discrimination and stigma in many arenas, including health care and social services. Gary L. Stein, JD, MSW (SWHPN Vice Chair, Professor at Wurzweiler School of Social Work at Yeshiva University) and Cathy Berkman, PhD, MSW (SWHPN Board, Associate Professor at the Graduate School of Social Service at Fordham University) are conducting a study to learn about the experiences of LGBT persons and their family and friends with palliative care and hospice programs. The goal of this study is to the ways in which their care is discriminatory, disrespectful, or inappropriate based on their sexual minority status. Study findings will be used to develop and disseminate policy and practice remedies.

Your participation is voluntary. If you do participate, you have the option of remaining anonymous. If you choose to share your identity, your responses will be confidential. Study findings will be reported in the aggregate and it will not be possible to identify individual respondents or their institutions. We expect that the national sample will include several hundred hospice and palliative care respondents from social work, medicine, nursing, chaplaincy, administrators and elder law attorneys.

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Announcing the APHSW-C Certification Program

The Social Work Hospice and Palliative Network is proud to announce the Advanced Palliative Hospice Social Worker Certification (APHSW-C) Program, the first evidence-based specialty certification program for hospice and palliative social workers.

Led by Dr. Barbara Head, and an advisory committee of educators, administrators, and practitioners, the APHSW-C Certification Program is the culmination of two years of work developing the first-ever testing and certification process specifically for hospice and palliative social workers. Unlike other certification programs, the APHSW-C designation requires verification of knowledge and competency based on passing an exam specifically and scientifically constructed to reflect the essential knowledge and skills required for specialty practice. Now established, social workers practicing in this specialty can apply for certification. The first administration of the test is scheduled for January 2019.

This program now provides a process by which a social worker's qualifications (knowledge, skills, abilities and experience) are verified for practice in hospice and palliative care. The certification may be preferred or required employment criteria or may be an expectation of accrediting bodies. Employers may expect new hires to work toward this specialty certification knowing that it validates their ability to practice in the field.

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Defining Palliative Care Social Work: Moving the Needle

Many of us, as palliative care social workers, have been thinking about how we can best describe what we do as clinicians, researchers, educators, within our medical institutions. In the setting of so many changes that have happened to medical social workers and case management over the past years, the social worker on the palliative care team are often caught between two or more worlds! These worlds and descriptions don’t always have the capacity to stretch and grow as the PC-CSW role has grown over the years. That has been our experience.

SWHPN Board Member Vickie Leff, LCSW, BCD is trying to change that, in the hope that we can help each other, learn from each other, and elevate the level of understanding of PC-CSW in hospital systems. At Duke, Vickie, along with Kristen Lakis, LCSW, Pediatric QoL Team, is working on not only developing new job descriptions that encompass the psychosocial, program, research, etc. that we do, but also reflect a vision for professional development both on the team and in the field. 

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New Post-MSW Palliative Care Social Work Fellowship at Montefiore Medical Center

Montefiore Medical Center

Palliative Care Social Work Fellowship Program

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SWHPN 2018 AWARDS RECIPIENTS

Each year, SWHPN members nominate their peers to recognize outstanding achievements in social work hospice and palliative care.  Winners are then recognized at the annual General Assembly.  We are pleased to announce this year’s winners, and will showcase their work on Monday, March 12, 2018, at the 6th Annual General Assembly in Boston, MA.  


Allison “Allie” Shukraft, MSW, MAT, Carolinas Healthcare System has been selected to receive the 2018 Emerging Leader Award.  This Award is designed to honor a palliative social worker with six or less years of experience in the field who has already demonstrated significant contributions. Emerging Leaders show potential to move the field forward and evidence of excellence and innovation in any of the following areas: professional practice, leadership, research, education, and/or policy and advocacy work.

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