How our social workers Isobel and Bev support people with HIV and cognitive impairment to regain independence

This is a great article in Community Care highlighting the key role of our social workers in transforming lives.

Photo: Natalie Valios

"Social work input is an integral part of the Mildmay ethos. Isobel Bukalo and Beverley Nelson have both been at Mildmay for many years and both have solid social work backgrounds in various disciplines including older people’s services and palliative care (Nelson) and working with drug dependent families, in child protection and at an HIV drop-in centre (Bukalo).

The pair provide essential support dealing with issues both inside and outside the hospital, from help with benefits, debt and finances, housing, employment, relationships, and immigration status, to the emotional support that patients frequently need while on the ward.

“We support families, carers and friends in understanding the patient’s needs from a medical perspective and what this can look like in terms of practical support, especially subtle changes in cognition and understanding,” says Nelson.

“We key work a patient’s journey from admission to discharge, liaising with external partners in relation to rehab needs. We provide advocacy and support and work from a person-centred perspective.

“We signpost to statutory, voluntary, and private agencies. And we support patients with palliative care issues, choices and arrangements around death and dying.” "

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