Social Work in Accident and Emergency Departments

A Better Deal for Older Patients' Health?

Eileen McLeod, Paul Bywaters, Matthew Cooke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Well-established internationally, the current development of social work in UK accident and emergency (A&E) departments is part of a conjoint health/social care policy drive to divert older people from 'unnecessary' admission to acute hospital care on social grounds. However, from older service users' standpoint, the prime criterion for assessing A&E social work is not its powers of diversion, but its contribution to optimum health and social care. Our account indicates that A&E based social work can provide important benefits, including help with negotiating the A&E environment and readier access to social services. Nevertheless, continuing professional-service user power imbalances, together with shortages in health and social care services, undermine its positive contribution both within A&E and following discharge. Notably, under-resourced community based health and social care can lead to services implemented through A&E, swiftly unravelling. This has serious consequences for older service users facing interlinked health and social problems, and may be implicated in re-attendance at A&E.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)787-802
Number of pages16
JournalBritish Journal of Social Work
Volume33
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2003
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Social Work
Hospital Emergency Service
accident
social work
Health
Delivery of Health Care
health
Social Problems
Negotiating
Public Policy
mobile social services
Accidents
shortage
Emergencies
community

Cite this

@article{aa9f596ed6dc452fb58712cc5dc77526,
title = "Social Work in Accident and Emergency Departments: A Better Deal for Older Patients' Health?",
abstract = "Well-established internationally, the current development of social work in UK accident and emergency (A&E) departments is part of a conjoint health/social care policy drive to divert older people from 'unnecessary' admission to acute hospital care on social grounds. However, from older service users' standpoint, the prime criterion for assessing A&E social work is not its powers of diversion, but its contribution to optimum health and social care. Our account indicates that A&E based social work can provide important benefits, including help with negotiating the A&E environment and readier access to social services. Nevertheless, continuing professional-service user power imbalances, together with shortages in health and social care services, undermine its positive contribution both within A&E and following discharge. Notably, under-resourced community based health and social care can lead to services implemented through A&E, swiftly unravelling. This has serious consequences for older service users facing interlinked health and social problems, and may be implicated in re-attendance at A&E.",
author = "Eileen McLeod and Paul Bywaters and Matthew Cooke",
year = "2003",
month = "9",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1093/bjsw/33.6.787",
language = "English",
volume = "33",
pages = "787--802",
journal = "British Journal of Social Work",
issn = "0045-3102",
publisher = "Oxford University Press",
number = "6",

}

Social Work in Accident and Emergency Departments : A Better Deal for Older Patients' Health? / McLeod, Eileen; Bywaters, Paul; Cooke, Matthew.

In: British Journal of Social Work, Vol. 33, No. 6, 01.09.2003, p. 787-802.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Social Work in Accident and Emergency Departments

T2 - A Better Deal for Older Patients' Health?

AU - McLeod, Eileen

AU - Bywaters, Paul

AU - Cooke, Matthew

PY - 2003/9/1

Y1 - 2003/9/1

N2 - Well-established internationally, the current development of social work in UK accident and emergency (A&E) departments is part of a conjoint health/social care policy drive to divert older people from 'unnecessary' admission to acute hospital care on social grounds. However, from older service users' standpoint, the prime criterion for assessing A&E social work is not its powers of diversion, but its contribution to optimum health and social care. Our account indicates that A&E based social work can provide important benefits, including help with negotiating the A&E environment and readier access to social services. Nevertheless, continuing professional-service user power imbalances, together with shortages in health and social care services, undermine its positive contribution both within A&E and following discharge. Notably, under-resourced community based health and social care can lead to services implemented through A&E, swiftly unravelling. This has serious consequences for older service users facing interlinked health and social problems, and may be implicated in re-attendance at A&E.

AB - Well-established internationally, the current development of social work in UK accident and emergency (A&E) departments is part of a conjoint health/social care policy drive to divert older people from 'unnecessary' admission to acute hospital care on social grounds. However, from older service users' standpoint, the prime criterion for assessing A&E social work is not its powers of diversion, but its contribution to optimum health and social care. Our account indicates that A&E based social work can provide important benefits, including help with negotiating the A&E environment and readier access to social services. Nevertheless, continuing professional-service user power imbalances, together with shortages in health and social care services, undermine its positive contribution both within A&E and following discharge. Notably, under-resourced community based health and social care can lead to services implemented through A&E, swiftly unravelling. This has serious consequences for older service users facing interlinked health and social problems, and may be implicated in re-attendance at A&E.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0345447093&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1093/bjsw/33.6.787

DO - 10.1093/bjsw/33.6.787

M3 - Article

VL - 33

SP - 787

EP - 802

JO - British Journal of Social Work

JF - British Journal of Social Work

SN - 0045-3102

IS - 6

ER -