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    All People Matter

    All People Matter

    Photo By Petty Officer 1st Class James Stenberg | Social workers at Naval Hospital Pensacola stand together for a group picture in front...... read more read more



    Story by Petty Officer 1st Class James Stenberg 

    NMRTC Pensacola

    PENSACOLA, Fla. – March is National Social Work Month and this year’s theme “All People Matter” expresses the spirit of the social work profession.

    Social Work Month is an opportunity for social workers to inform and educate others about the profession and the contributions they have made to society.

    “Social work is the profession of helping people achieve their maximum potential,” said Rikki Vidak, behavioral science coordinator and a licensed social worker, Naval Hospital Pensacola.

    Social work encompasses many facets of life, including medical care. Social workers have a role in counseling patients with an assortment of symptoms like anxiety, grief, stress, smoking and depression.

    “If something is going on in a patient’s life or marriage and they need help, they can come to a social worker and get counseling for it,” said Lt. Jayme Larick, internal behavior health consultant and a licensed social worker at the hospital.

    Patients often relate counseling to seeing a psychologist or psychiatrist, but clinical social workers are licensed to see patients for many of the same reasons.

    “Social work actually comprises about 75 percent of all mental health provided in the United States,” said Vidak. “Here in the hospital, we have long term counseling that is done in the Social Work Department by a licensed clinical social worker.”

    Naval Hospital Pensacola also employs several social workers in different areas of the hospital to assist patients with short term therapy, evaluation and assessment, referrals and various other healthcare concerns.

    “One of the most visible services [social workers] provide is discharge planning for our inpatients,” said Vidak. “We help patients get the services they will need upon discharge so they don’t need to come back [to the hospital] for the same issue.”

    In addition to being Social Work Month, March is also Women’s History Month and female social workers have been instrumental in many firsts throughout history. Jane Addams was one of the first women to receive a Nobel Peace Prize, Frances Perkins was the first woman to be appointed to the cabinet of a U.S. president as President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s secretary of labor and Jeanette Rankin was the first woman elected to the U.S. Congress. All of these women share the common bond of being a social worker.

    Naval Hospitals Pensacola’s Social Work Department is available to all enrolled beneficiaries. Referrals are not required and walk-ins are accepted on a space available basis. To make an appointment, contact the Social Work Department at 850-505-6741.



    Date Taken: 03.14.2014
    Date Posted: 03.14.2014 09:34
    Story ID: 121999

    Web Views: 218
    Downloads: 1