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What does an oncology social worker deal with in patient consultations?: An empirical study
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work. Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Radiation Sciences, Oncology.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-5696-996x
Stockholms universitet, Institutionen för socialt arbete, Department of social work.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2048-9814
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9998-2574
2019 (English)In: Social work in health care, ISSN 0098-1389, E-ISSN 1541-034X, Vol. 58, no 5, p. 494-508Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The oncology social worker is a core profession in the psycho- social care of cancer patients, and has been scrutinised accord- ing to its role, function, and delivery of care, primarily from an Anglo-Saxon perspective. There is, however, a lack of studies outside this context, and empirical studies based on individual data. This study is a contribution by exploring the variability in clinical practice from a Swedish perspective. It is based on documentation from one oncology social worker’s (OSW’s) patient contacts over the course of one year. The essence of the majority of contacts was counseling and the patients dis- played a wide variety of motives for seeing an OSW. The function of the OSW is thus multifaceted, and the findings suggest that the OSW, in addition to guiding patients in social legislation issues, also should be prepared to act as an anchor in an acute crisis, contain despair in different phases of the trajectory, and facilitate the ‘carrying on as before’ or finding a ‘new normal’. The paper discusses the importance of the OSW being acquainted with different counseling/psychother- apy perspectives in the illness context, but primarily the impor- tance of having the ability to establish a ‘working alliance’ with their patients.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis, 2019. Vol. 58, no 5, p. 494-508
Keywords [en]
Cancer, counseling, clinical practice, oncology social work
National Category
Social Work
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-157648DOI: 10.1080/00981389.2019.1587661ISI: 000464332400005PubMedID: 30901286OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-157648DiVA, id: diva2:1299521
Funder
The Kamprad Family Foundation, 20150039Available from: 2019-03-27 Created: 2019-03-27 Last updated: 2019-06-13Bibliographically approved

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Lilliehorn, SaraSalander, Pär

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