Whanau meetings in the hospital: Uncovering the unique role of social workers
Keywords:special issue on social work in healthcare, health social work, healthcare, whanau meetings, social work practice,
AbstractSocial workers in health care settings frequently play a major role in working with patients, families and other health professionals to utilise family meetings to improve communication and outcomes. This article describes a quality related project undertaken by a group of hospital social workers to explore effective social work practice in family meetings. The study identifies five essential practice activities as significant in supporting effective whanau meeting practice.
Aotearoa New Zealand Association of Social Workers (2008). Code of ethics (2nd ed.). Christchurch: Aotearoa New Zealand Association of Social Workers.
Azoulay, E., Chevrt, S., Leleu, G., Pochard, F., Barboteu, M., Adrie, C., Canoui, P., Le Gall, J., & Schlemmer, B. (2000). Half the families of intensive care unit patients experience inadequate communication with physicians. Critical Care Medicine, 28(8), 3044-3049.
Beder, J. (2006). Hospital social work: The interface between medicine and caring. New York: Routledge.
Cram, F., Smith, L., & Johnstone, W. (2003). Mapping the themes of Maori talk about health. New Zealand Medical Journal, 116(1107): 1-7.
Curtis, J., Patrick, D., Shannon, S., Treece, P., Engelberg, R., & Rubenfeld, D. (2001). The family conference as a focus to improve communication about end-of-life-care in the intensive care unit: Opportunities for improvement. Critical Care Medicine, 29: 26-33.
Curtis, J., Engelberg. R., Wenrick, M., Shannon, S., Treece P., & Rubenfeld, D. (2005). Missed opportunities during family conferences about end-of-life-care in the intensive care unit. American Journal of Respiratory Critical Care Medicine, 171(8): 844-849.
Davidson, C., & Tolich, M. (Eds.). (2003). Social science research in New Zealand (2nd ed.). Auckland: Pearson Education New Zealand.
De Souza, R. (2004). Motherhood, migration and methodology: Giving voice to the ‘other’. The Qualitative Report, 9(3), 463-482.
Fineberg, I. (2005). Preparing professionals for family conferences in palliative care: Evaluating results of an interdisciplinary approach. Journal of Palliative Medicine, 8(4), 857-66.
Fouché, C., Lunt, N., & Yates, D. (2007). Growing Research in Practice: A collection of resources [Electronic Version], Retrieved from http://sscs.massey.ac.nz/pdf/Gripbookweb.pdf.
Lunt, N., Fouche, C., & Yates, D. (2008). Growing research in practice: An innovative partnership model. Wellington: New Zealand Families Commission.
Gibbs, A. (2001). The changing nature and context of social work research. British Journal of Social Work, 31, 687- 704.
Hansen, P., Cornish, P., & Kaysar, K. (1998). Family conferences as forums for decision making in hospital settings. Social Work in Health Care, 27(3), 57-74.
McCallin, A. (2006). Interdisciplinary team work: Labelling is not enough. Journal of the Australasian Rehabilitation Nurses’ Association, 9(2), 6-10.
McDonagh, J, Elliott, T., Engelberg, R., Treece, P., Shannon, S., Rubenfeld, G., Patrick, D., & Curtis, J. (2004). Family satisfaction with family conferences about end-of-life-care in the intensive care unit: Increased proportion of family speech is associated with increased satisfaction. Critical Care Medicine, 32, 1484-8.
Meyer, E., Sellers, D., Browning, D., McGuffie, K., Soloman, M., & Truog, R. (2009). Difficult conversations: Improving communication skills and relational abilities in health care. Pediatric Critical Care Medicine, 10(3): 352-359.
Miller, J., & Nilsson, D., (2008). Contemporary issues in health social work. In Connolly, M., Harms, L. (Eds.). Social work contexts and practice (2nd ed.), (pp. 179-193). Melbourne: Oxford University Press.
Ministry of Health (2007). Ethical review in New Zealand: Role of Ethics Committees. Retrieved 5 January 2010 from
Mutua, K., & Swadener, B. (2004). Introduction. In K. Mutua & B. Swadener (Eds.), Decolonizing research in crosscultural contexts (pp. 1-23). Albany: State University Press.
Savin-Baden, M. (2004). Achieving reflexivity: Moving researchers from analysis to interpretation in collaborative inquiry. Journal of Social Work Practice, 18(3),365-378
Shaw, I., & Gould, N. (Eds.). (2001). Qualitative research in social work. London: Sage Publications.
Tuhiwai-Smith, L. (1999). Decolonizing methodologies: Research and indigenous peoples. London: Zed Books.
How to Cite
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
By completing the online submission process, you confirm you accept this agreement. The following is the entire agreement between you and the Aotearoa New Zealand Association of Social Workers (ANZASW) and it may be modified only in writing.
You and any co-authors
If you are completing this agreement on behalf of co-authors, you confirm that you are acting on their behalf with their knowledge.
By submitting the work you are:
- granting the ANZASW the right of first publication of this work;
- confirming that the work is original; and
- confirming that the work has not been published in any other form.
Once published, you are free to use the final, accepted version in any way, as outlined below under Copyright.
You assign copyright in the final, accepted version of your article to the ANZASW. You and any co-authors of the article retain the right to be identified as authors of the work.
The ANZASW will publish the final, accepted manuscript under a Creative Commons Attribution licence (CC BY 4.0). This licence allows anyone – including you – to share, copy, distribute, transmit, adapt and make commercial use of the work without needing additional permission, provided appropriate attribution is made to the original author or source.
A human-readable summary of the licence is available from http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0, which includes a link to the full licence text.
Under this licence you can use the final, published version of the article freely – such as depositing a copy in your institutional research repository, uploading a copy to your profile on an academic networking site or including it in a different publication, such as a collection of articles on a topic or in conference proceedings – provided that original publication in Aotearoa New Zealand Social Work is acknowledged.
This agreement has no effect on any pre-publication versions or elements, which remain entirely yours, and to which we claim no right.
Reviewers hold copyright in their own comments and should not be further copied in any way without their permission.
The copyright of others
If your article includes the copyright material of others (e.g. graphs, diagrams etc.), you confirm that your use either:
- falls within the limits of fair dealing for the purposes of criticism and review or fair use; OR
- that you have gained permission from the rights holder for publication in an open access journal.