Social Work Services

About Social Work Services

UPMC CancerCenter Social Work Services provide individual, family and group counseling, education, advocacy, discharge planning, case management, and program development. These services are designed to maximize the patient's utilization of the health care system, foster coping, and access community resources in order to support optimal functioning.

Social work services are available to patients and families throughout all phases of the cancer continuum, including prevention, diagnosis, treatment, survivorship, terminal care, and bereavement.

Oncology social workers provide the following clinical and program-related services at UPMC CancerCenter:

The focus of care may relate to the following:

  • Adjusting to changes in self-image and sexuality
  • Adjusting to the emotional impact of a cancer diagnosis
  • Communicating with children about cancer
  • Coping with bereavement
  • Coping with chronic illness
  • Learning to negotiate the complexities of the health care system
  • Managing financial and insurance concerns
  • Planning for care after hospitalization
  • Realigning family roles
  • Returning to the workplace
  • Stress management

Oncology social workers also offer a number of support and educational groups to patients with cancer and their family members.

Additional responsibilities and activities outside the realm of direct patient care include: