Episode 19

Wrap Around Care: The Role of Social Work in General Practice

In this episode of Medicubes, hosts Chris, Riwka, and Kim are joined by guest Kylie Gibson, Business Manager at Fisher Family Practice, Holder Family Practice and Fisher Allied Health.  

They discuss the important role of social workers in general practice, the benefits of integrating social workers into care teams, the various services they provide, and how they support vulnerable elderly individuals to remain in their homes. 

Tune in for insights into the collaborative approach between social workers and GPs, the challenges faced, and the positive impact on patient care.

Key Points:

  • Social Worker Role: Referred patients get comprehensive support, covering information provision, ongoing aid, and tackling complex healthcare needs.
  • Teamwork and Patient Goals: Social workers collaborate with patients, focusing on goal-setting and consistent consultations.
  • Advocacy: They serve as advocates, guiding patients through the system to close any gaps in care.
  • Pilot Program: Funded by Capital Health Network, the Social Workers in General Practice Pilot Program is an Australian first, aiming to enhance care for those with complex social and health barriers.
  • Evaluation: University of Canberra is independently evaluating the program.
  • Financial Barriers: Although currently limited by funding and Medicare restrictions, the data collected in this pilot will hopefully demonstrate the ongoing need for Social Workers in General Practice, and propose pathways for future funding. 

Additional Resources:

About the Podcast

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The Medicubes team bring you a monthly panel conversation of exciting and challenging topics in primary health care, answering listener questions and invited guests to the discussions.

About your hosts

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Kim Poyner

Accredited Health Coach and executive coach, with over 20 years of experience in General Practice and Intensive Care Units. Mentor to health professionals and organisations to achieve their best, specialising in chronic disease management, coaching, and change management programs.
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Riwka Hagen

An experienced general practice manager, with a passion for leadership development, coaching, and business management in the health sector. As the Director of Medical Business Services and Medical Business Coaching, she provides consulting, advisory, coaching, training, and mentoring services to health organisations Australia-wide, and is also the founder of the highly active Facebook group 'Practice Managers Network'.
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Chris Smeed

A lover of all things Practice Management and Data. Always thinking of ways to make life easier and to help with patient outcomes.