Social Work in Stroke Rehabilitation

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1 Social Work in Stroke Rehabilitation Presented by Catherine Viandante Senior Social Worker Osborne Park Hospital Topics to be covered.. Role of Social Work at OPH Stroke Rehabilitation Unit Coping with change Counsellor Education Program-National Stroke Foundation Role of Social Work at OPH Stroke Rehabilitation Unit Blanket Social Work referral for all SRU patients within 24hours of admission Stroke Survivor Kits provided to client or their family upon admission Facilitation of the goal setting and discharge planning family meetings goal setting within 2 weeks of admission 1

2 Role of Social Work at OPH Stroke Rehabilitation Unit Counselling and support for stroke survivors and their family, for example grief and loss, problem solving, carer stress, coping strategies Stroke resources Follow-up for stroke survivors post discharge from OPH Staff and community education sessions Having a stroke is a life changing event for both the stroke survivor and their family Difficulties arise around home and community environments, driving and access to transport, family and carer stress, financial issues, availability of community supports and possible alternative accommodation options Country home and community environments may not offer quite the same access to community services due to lack of resources and funding. It is important our metropolitan colleagues complete a verbal handover if a stroke survivor is returning home particularly if they reside in an isolated environment and require community supports and ongoing therapy. 2

3 It is important that stroke survivors understand they are not to drive post stroke until they are medically cleared. Some may not be safe to drive again and therefore will be relying on family or friends to provide transport to appointments for them. This inturn can create stress on the primary carer and the stroke survivor may be feeling anger towards their loss of independence The serious and disabling effects of a stroke affect a person s finances through increasing costs of living and at times the decrease in earning capacity Additional costs after a stroke could include medications, transport, support services, purchase of equipment, alterations to the home environment to name a few The family and other significant people in the life of the stroke survivor will also be affected by the event Whilst the stroke survivor is an inpatient they will have access to the Social Worker or Clinical Psychologist for counselling along with general support from nursing and therapy staff 3

4 For many stroke survivors and their carers the return home brings with it anxiety regarding coping with the changes. The carer may have extra responsibilities with household duties and along with providing personal and emotional support to the stroke survivor. It is important carers are given access to relevant organisations that can assist them with their caring role by providing the support they need. Coping with Change Following a medical event such as a stroke, a number of losses may be experienced for example, loss of functioning such as speech or physical abilities, loss of independence, loss of lifestyle, loss of future plans The stroke survivor may experience the following stages of grief Coping with Change Grief and Loss Anger and isolation Denial Bargaining Depression Acceptance 4

5 Counsellor Education Project- NSF The aim of this project is to provide education to counsellors on stroke related depression and anxiety by implementing a counselling education program that will provide training for the appropriate counsellors. Please review attached handout. 5

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