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Syracuse Home celebrates National Social Work month

The month of March is National Social Work month and Syracuse Home Health and Rehabilitation Center is proud of its social work team.

Director of Resident Services Ellen Jennings has been with Syracuse Home for 16 years and, together with Jessica Brown, a myriad of social services are provided to skilled, long-term residents. Amy Hunsinger provides extensive case management to the more than 400 short-term rehabilitation residents who are admitted to Syracuse Home on an annual basis.

At the time of admission, each-and-every resident undergoes a thorough assessment and care planning process, which identifies the most effective ways to support each resident's individual needs. Social workers assist residents and their family members to determine how decisions about their healthcare options, plus physical and emotional needs of each individual, are to be met.

The social work team of Syracuse Home provides medically related social services for each resident including making arrangements for adaptive equipment, clothing and personal items. Social workers are the vital link as they liaison with family members regarding changes in health status, goals and planning for discharge. They also advocate for residents and provide the essential connection beyond the facility by making referrals and obtaining necessary services from outside entities including financial and legal matters. Oftentimes, social workers will perform the important role of navigating and supporting family members of residents through the nuances of the health care system.

Discharge planning for short-term rehabilitation residents returning to home is a vital path and important reassurance for both residents as well as their families. Coordination and arrangements of home care services, needed equipment and therapies after discharge is the role of Hunsinger. More than 400 residents were transitioned home last year after completing successful rehab therapy.

The resident services' team of Syracuse Home's social work department includes the pastoral ministry of chaplain Reverend Stuart Hayes, admissions coordinator Karen Carson, LPN, and beauticians Linda Martin and Chris Varju. As a hard-working team, the social work professionals improve the ability of each of Syracuse Home's residents to meet and manage their everyday physical, mental and psychosocial needs.

For anyone planning an elective procedure such as hip or knee replacement and may require short-term rehabilitation therapy, of if long-term care may be necessary, contact admissions coordinator Karen Carson at 638-2521. Beds are available on a daily basis and Syracuse Home boasts a superior reputation.

Jessica Brown, left, Ellen Jennings, center, and Amy Hunsinger make up the social services team at Syracuse Home where staff is currently celebrating National Social Work month.

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