Social work and mental health : the value of everything
With mental health increasingly being recognised as crucial for a healthy and productive nation, and a vital component in the regeneration of communities, the current reality and future possibilities for social work in mental health services are becoming clearer.
This is a new edition of Peter Gilbert's "The Value of Everything: Social Work and its Importance in the Field of Mental Health" (RHP, 2003), which was acclaimed: 'A clear guide, and useful tool for increasing understanding between all stakeholder groups in mental health' - "Mental Health Today". 'The author's breadth of knowledge makes the book accessible and informative at all levels of enquiry the contribution that social work skills make to service users is apparent throughout' - Community Care. 'The service user and carer perspective is featured heavily, and their accounts and those of mental health staff are used liberally to illustrate why the social work role will continue to be of central importance insightful and interesting' - "Care & Health".
This new edition maintains the focus on the values that social work espouses as a profession, and its value in current mental health services. New chapters have been added around social inclusion; personalisation; research; spirituality; the role of the social worker following new mental health legislation in 2005 and 2007; and an overview of policy up to the current time.
It: celebrates and promotes multi-disciplinary work and the integration of perspectives; sets social work as a major contributor to a truly whole-person and whole-systems approach to mental health; values those who use mental health services as people with their own unique strengths, needs and experiences; addresses issues of identity and equality; provides clear theoretical frameworks for understanding barriers to developing those relationships that enable social workers to recognise the capacities of service users; discusses the merits of different models for understanding and working with mental or emotional distress; uses research and ideas drawn from sociology, psychiatry, psychology and even economics to emphasise how social work is able to utilise the best of everything that is available for the service users and carers benefit. Timely, it considers the value of social work in light of what users and carers want from services; the value base of the new policies of reform; the role of the social worker in different settings; and ways of taking these values and skills into these new settings.
It will boost the confidence of social workers by reinforcing the tremendous resource that they are to people in the greatest need in our society; and will help partner professions and agencies value the contribution that social work can bring.