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Here is all you need to know about Mental Health and Substance Abuse Social Workers

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What do Mental Health and Substance Abuse Social Workers do?

Assess and treat individuals with mental, emotional, or substance abuse problems, including abuse of alcohol, tobacco, and/or other drugs. Activities may include individual and group therapy, crisis intervention, case management, client advocacy, prevention, and education.

What are the Main Tasks of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Social Workers?

  • Counsel clients in individual or group sessions to assist them in dealing with substance abuse, mental or physical illness, poverty, unemployment, or physical abuse.
  • Interview clients, review records, conduct assessments, or confer with other professionals to evaluate the mental or physical condition of clients or patients.
  • Collaborate with counselors, physicians, or nurses to plan or coordinate treatment, drawing on social work experience and patient needs.
  • Monitor, evaluate, and record client progress with respect to treatment goals.
  • Educate clients or community members about mental or physical illness, abuse, medication, or available community resources.
  • Assist clients in adhering to treatment plans, such as setting up appointments, arranging for transportation to appointments, or providing support.
  • Refer patient, client, or family to community resources for housing or treatment to assist in recovery from mental or physical illness, following through to ensure service efficacy.
  • Modify treatment plans according to changes in client status.
  • Counsel or aid family members to assist them in understanding, dealing with, or supporting the client or patient.
  • Increase social work knowledge by reviewing current literature, conducting social research, or attending seminars, training workshops, or classes.
  • Plan or conduct programs to prevent substance abuse, combat social problems, or improve health or counseling services in community.
  • Supervise or direct other workers who provide services to clients or patients.
  • Develop or advise on social policy or assist in community development.
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