Celebrating World Social Work Day 2023

We celebrate and recognise the contributions by Social Workers at Peninsula Health and thank them for their ongoing advocacy and support to the consumers of our health service.  

To learn about the Social Worker profession and some of the work being undertaken by the Peninsula Health Social Work Department, we spoke with Peninsula Health Senior Social Worker, Claire Duane.    

Image: Peninsula Health Senior Social Worker, Claire Duane

“The reason I love this work is that we place the patient at the centre of everything we do,” says Claire. “We can be the patient’s voice and can support individuals to navigate a complex health system, enabling them to make decisions about their own life.”  

Claire leads a team of eight staff in supporting some of the most vulnerable older people from our community. “My role is to guide, mentor and empower our social work workforce to share the same vision,” she adds.  

The development of the new Interim Care Program is an exciting initiative led by Claire, providing an opportunity for Social Workers at Peninsula Health to support patients and families in transitioning to aged residential care.  

“Evidence suggests that this decision can be stressful and an overwhelming life transition,” explains Claire. “Based within an aged care facility, patients and families are supported by a dedicated social worker to help them to find and transfer to their new home at a facility of their choice. During this process, patients on the program are provided the time, the guidance and the emotional support that we know is required.” 

Claire enjoys fostering positive working relationships within her Social Work team and with the broader multidisciplinary team. “This ensures we are able to achieve positive outcomes and highlights the value of our profession within the organisation in working with diverse and vulnerable populations,” adds Claire. “The impact of COVID-19 has provided us with new opportunities to support our community and to challenge the ways we work, prompting us to find innovative ways to move forward.”  

Happy Social Work Day!