The diversity of roles, tasks and education of palliative care social workers in Europe
The taskforce was established beginning of the year 2009.
We have evidence from our survey that the role of specialist social workers has been under threat and yet the evidence from Service users is that they value their interventions particularly their advocacy and knowledge of family dynamics . There is also a tendency to see the needs of patients and families in terms of psychological not psychosocial. This belies the knowledge that death and dying are social events. Social Workers basic training about working with families makes them uniquely positioned to see the patient within his family and social networks. Many palliative care social workers are lone workers, and this task force provides them with a focus and information.
Aims and Objectives
- To offer leadership to social workers in End of Life and Palliative Care across Europe
- To identify the diversity of tasks and roles (Completed and paper published in 2020)
- To consider the provision of specialist education
- To produce a curriculum for postgraduate education.
- Survey palliative care social workers re adaption of hospices to working in the pandemic ( in progress )
- To improve knowledge and skills of palliative care s/workers working with children and young people facing bereavement
PhD, PGCHET, MSc, PG Dip SW, BA Honours
Senior Lecturer in Social Work (Specialising in palliative, end of life care and bereavement)
Queen’s University Belfast
- Maria Wasner – Germany
- Jose Van Nus – The Netherlands
- Irene Murphy – Ireland
- Carla Reigada – Portugal
- Petruta Anania – Romania
- Inger Benkel – Sweden
- Marie Mackova – Czech Republic
- Karl Bitschnau – Austria – EAPC Board link
- Steve Marshall – UK
- Patricia Dobrik – Slovakia
- Tania Piccione – Italy
- Susanne Kiepke-Ziemes – Germany
Susan Cadell – Canada
The Association of Palliative Care Social Workers UK
Pam Firth is a founder member of the new World Hospice and Palliative Care Social Work Network
The task force leaders are in touch with palliative care social work groups in USA, Canada, Sweden, Switzerland, Spain, Holland, Portugal, Ireland and Romania.
2019 Sept: Commencement of in depth look at the Education needs of Palliative Care
2019 July: Survey of diversity of roles results and analysis published and completed.
2019 May: Meet the Expert session at the World Congress in Berlin. Focus on palliative care social work with the LGBT community
2020-2021 Five new members have joined the task force
2021 Decision made to proceed to become a reference group