Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 54.1. Professions and Occupations
Chapter 37. Social Work

§ 54.1-3700. Definitions.

As used in this chapter, unless the context requires a different meaning:

"Administration" means the process of attaining the objectives of an organization through a system of coordinated and cooperative efforts to make social service programs effective instruments for the amelioration of social conditions and for the solution of social problems.

"Baccalaureate social worker" means a person who engages in the practice of social work under the supervision of a master's social worker and provides basic generalist services, including casework management and supportive services and consultation and education.

"Board" means the Board of Social Work.

"Casework" means both direct treatment, with an individual or several individuals, and intervention in the situation on the client's behalf with the objectives of meeting the client's needs, helping the client deal with the problem with which he is confronted, strengthening the client's capacity to function productively, lessening his distress, and enhancing his opportunities and capacities for fulfillment.

"Casework management and supportive services" means assessment of presenting problems and perceived needs, referral services, policy interpretation, data gathering, planning, advocacy, and coordination of services.

"Clinical social worker" means a social worker who, by education and experience, is professionally qualified at the autonomous practice level to provide direct diagnostic, preventive and treatment services where functioning is threatened or affected by social and psychological stress or health impairment.

"Consultation and education" means program consultation in social work to agencies, organizations, or community groups; academic programs and other training such as staff development activities, seminars, and workshops using social work principles and theories of social work education.

"Group work" means helping people, in the realization of their potential for social functioning, through group experiences in which the members are involved with common concerns and in which there is agreement about the group's purpose, function, and structure.

"Master's social worker" means a person who engages in the practice of social work and provides non-clinical, generalist services, including staff supervision and management.

"Planning and community organization" means helping organizations and communities analyze social problems and human needs; planning to assist organizations and communities in organizing for general community development; and improving social conditions through the application of social planning, resource development, advocacy, and social policy formulation.

"Practice of social work" means rendering or offering to render to individuals, families, groups, organizations, governmental units, or the general public service which is guided by special knowledge of social resources, social systems, human capabilities, and the part conscious and unconscious motivation play in determining behavior. Any person regularly employed by a licensed hospital or nursing home who offers or renders such services in connection with his employment in accordance with patient care policies or plans for social services adopted pursuant to applicable regulations when such services do not include group, marital or family therapy, psychosocial treatment or other measures to modify human behavior involving child abuse, newborn intensive care, emotional disorders or similar issues, shall not be deemed to be engaged in the "practice of social work." Subject to the foregoing, the disciplined application of social work values, principles and methods includes, but is not restricted to, casework management and supportive services, casework, group work, planning and community organization, administration, consultation and education, and research.

"Research" means the application of systematic procedures for the purpose of developing, modifying, and expanding knowledge of social work practice which can be communicated and verified.

"Social worker" means a person trained to provide service and action to effect changes in human behavior, emotional responses, and the social conditions by the application of the values, principles, methods, and procedures of the profession of social work.

1976, c. 608, § 54-941; 1979, c. 398; 1981, c. 555; 1988, c. 765; 2018, c. 451.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.