Socw 6205 Assignment Inpatient Psychiatric Unit

Assignment: Inpatient Psychiatric Unit

Deinstitutionalization played a significant rolein shaping the current roles of psychiatric social workers. Psychiatricsocial workers work on inpatient psychiatric units and provide servicesto individuals with mental illness and their families. Most inpatientpsychiatric units are unique clinical settings where doors to the unitsare locked from the inside and from the outside. Patients are not freeto leave the units at will, and visitors to the units are monitoredclosely. Psychiatric social workers work with patients who voluntarilyseek care and others who are involuntarily admitted. In the simplest ofterms, inpatient psychiatric care today focuses on stabilization andreferral to a lower level of care. Psychiatric social workers create,negotiate, and implement discharge plans. They also provide limitedclinical services, usually in the form of group interventions.

To prepare for this Assignment:

Review this week’s resources. Think about theroles and functions of a psychiatric social worker in inpatientpsychiatric care settings. Focus on practice skills. Consider thephilosophy of psychiatric social work.

In a 3- to 4-page paper:

  • Explain the philosophy that drives psychiatric social work in caring for patients with mental illness.
  • Explain the primary goals of psychiatric social workers.
  • Describe the roles and functions of psychiatric social workers on interdisciplinary inpatient psychiatric teams.
  • Compare differences and similarities in roles, practice skills, andfunctions between psychiatric social workers in inpatient units andnon-psychiatric medical social workers in other types of medical unitsor healthcare settings.

Support your Assignment with specificreferences to resources, using appropriate APA format and style. You areasked to provide a reference list for all resources, including those inthe resources for this course.

Required Readings

Messinger, S. D. (2011). Cooperation and contention in psychiatric work. Transcultural Psychiatry, 48, 284–298.

Lanier, P., Bollinger, S., & Krueger, R. F. (2013). Advances in the conceptualization of personality disorders: Issues affecting social work practice and research. Clinical Social Work Journal, 41(2), 155–162.

OBrien-Suric, N. (2013). Social workers and their integral role in interdisciplinary team care. Retrieved from

Hudson, C.G. (2016). A model of deinstitutionalization of psychiatric care across 161 nations: 2001-2014. International Journal of Mental Health, 45(2), 135-153.

Tischler, S., Webster, M., Wittmann, D., & Wade, K. (2017). Developing and sustaining a practice-based research infrastructure in a hospital social work department: Why is it important? Social Work in Health Care, 56(1), 1-12.

National Alliance on Mental Illness. (2019). NAMI Programs. Retrieved from
Note: This website can be used to find local resources and programs for individuals with mental illness and their families. NAMI volunteers often provide these programs as part of inpatient psychiatric treatment or after-care support.

Ponte, K. (2019, March 11). That time in the psych ward [Blog post]. Retrieved from

Optional Resources

Johns Hopkins Medicine. (n.d.). The history of psychiatry social work. Retrieved from

Widiger, T. A. (2013). Changes in the conceptualization of personality disorder: The DSM-5 debacle. Clinical Social Work Journal, 41(2), 163–167.

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