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The Social Work Division participates in national, state, and local initiatives to enhance the services provided to the people of our state. Geared toward attracting a quality work force for the future, the division works with the administrative staff of the Department and the South Central Public Health Leadership Institute to create opportunities for public health to be introduced to current students enrolled in educational institutions.

Public Health Social Workers focus on identifying children, families, elderly, and physically and/or intellectually disabled adults who have needs. Social workers provide intervention services to help clients discover ways of meeting their needs and preventing future problems.

Three levels of prevention are central to public health social work practice:

  • Preventing disease and adverse conditions (physical, emotional, behavioral) from ever occurring by promoting healthy behaviors, prevention activities, and protective measures.
  • Promoting early diagnosis and treatment to minimize the effects of illness.
  • Working to rehabilitate or restore clients to improved functioning after the onset of a disease or condition.