Social care's impact on emergency medicine: A model to test

P. Bywaters, E. Mclead

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Mainly in response to the policy drive to avoid unnecessary acute hospital admissions and delayed discharge on social grounds, there has been a gradual development of social work services attached to emergency departments (EDs) in the UK. In the absence of a clearly articulated evidence base or debate about the roles of ED attached social workers, a model of ED based social work practice and indicative supporting evidence is presented. It is argued that social workers may be able to contribute to the efficiency and effectiveness of hospital services while providing a key point of access to social care services. A number of obstacles remain to the implementation of this model of service, including the narrow focus of current social care practice, the hours that a social work service is normally provided, chronic under-funding, and continuing perverse incentives in the health and social care system. More systematic evidence in the UK context is needed to support the case for change.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)134-137
Number of pages4
JournalEmergency Medicine Journal
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2003
Externally publishedYes


Dive into the research topics of 'Social care's impact on emergency medicine: A model to test'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this