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The challenges of a hidden disability: Social work practice in the field of traumatic brain injury

The challenges of a hidden disability: Social work practice in the field of traumatic brain injury Abstract Traumatic brain injury (TBI) has become an important area for social work practice. Children and adults sustaining TBI often undergo hospitalisation, rehabilitation and face the prospect of lifelong cognitive and psychosocial impairments. Families are profoundly affected by the consequences of the injury. TBI is a ‘hidden disability’ because there are typically no physical markers indicating a person has brain damage. This paper aims to provide some guidelines for social work practice in the area, in particular, outlining options for social work interventions at individual, family, community, service system and policy levels. Social workers need to acquire specialised knowledge about brain injury, reformulate traditional models of grief counselling to address the adjustment challenges and utilise community education and service innovation to address the social stigma and reduced level of community participation associated with brain damage. Finally, social workers aim to nurture a sense of hope in the face of the tragedy. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Australian Social Work Taylor & Francis

The challenges of a hidden disability: Social work practice in the field of traumatic brain injury

14 pages

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References (36)

Publisher
Taylor & Francis
Copyright
Copyright Taylor & Francis Group, LLC
ISSN
1447-0748
eISSN
0312-407X
DOI
10.1080/03124070208411669
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Abstract Traumatic brain injury (TBI) has become an important area for social work practice. Children and adults sustaining TBI often undergo hospitalisation, rehabilitation and face the prospect of lifelong cognitive and psychosocial impairments. Families are profoundly affected by the consequences of the injury. TBI is a ‘hidden disability’ because there are typically no physical markers indicating a person has brain damage. This paper aims to provide some guidelines for social work practice in the area, in particular, outlining options for social work interventions at individual, family, community, service system and policy levels. Social workers need to acquire specialised knowledge about brain injury, reformulate traditional models of grief counselling to address the adjustment challenges and utilise community education and service innovation to address the social stigma and reduced level of community participation associated with brain damage. Finally, social workers aim to nurture a sense of hope in the face of the tragedy.

Journal

Australian Social WorkTaylor & Francis

Published: Mar 1, 2002

Keywords: psychosocial disability; social work practice; traumatic brain injury

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