China – Launch of central government supported social service project

The 2015 Launching of the Chinese Social Work Education Association’s Hospice Care Demonstration Project—A Central Government supported Social Service Project

Translated by: APHN News Team (China) – Shen Yue
Edited by: APHN Volunteer, Djin Lai

070515On March 7,2015, the launching ceremony and training meeting of the National Hospice Service project was held in Jiangxi University of Finance and Economics (JUFE). The event was hosted by the Chinese Social Work Education Association and the Li Ka Shing Foundation” Heart of Gold” National Hospice Service Program. Dr. Luo Minjie, the director of the Li Ka Shing foundation’s “Heart of Gold” National Hospice Service Program; Professor Shi Bonian, vice-chairman of Chinese Social Educational Association; Jue Shandong, assistant to the president of JUFE; Xie Kuaisheng, deputy director of Jiangxi Provincial Civil Affairs Department of Social Work; and Professor Wu Yinsheng, honorary president and consultant of first affiliated hospital of Nanchang University Hospice were among some of the esteemed attendees who spoke at the meeting. Yin Zhonghai, the vice-president of JUFE’s humanities school hosted the meeting. During the launching ceremony and training meeting, universities’ specialist social work groups and hospice social-workers talked about the service experience, the service’s details, and they learned the methods of hospice care in an impassioned atmosphere, leading to the successful foundation of the project implementation.

The project aims at supplying specialist social work service to patients and families of patients with terminal cancer who live in poverty, with the direct aims of relieving the pressures caused by facing death and imminent separation from loved ones, improving the quality of life and “the quality of death”, and promoting peace of mind for patients and families. In the long-term, the project also develops valuable palliative social work experiences, establishes a medical social work personnel, and outlines principles of professionalism. The project also serves to build bridges between doctors and patients, reduce doctor-patient conflicts, promote the establishment of social work service and positions among medical units, and increase the awareness of palliative service among the general public. In addition, it embodies the concept of holistic care, and creates a social atmosphere for the development of medical social work.

The demonstration project includes 16 large hospitals and engages 16 community service personnel in each of the provinces (municipalities). Community service personnel are volunteer faculty and students from the provinces’ universities who commit to undertaking the hospice program in the hospital setting, in which they will supply specialist social work services to poor terminal cancer patients and their families. Chongqing, Gansu, Guizhou, Hebei, Heilongjiang, Henan, Hunan, Jilin, Jiangxi, Liaoning, Ningxia, Qinghai, Sichuan, Shanxi, Shanxi, and Xinjiang are among some of the provinces participating and involves approximately 9,400 volunteer hours.

The hospice project received strong support from the central government for the social service demonstration project in 2015, which was managed by Ministry of Civil Affairs Authority, a civil society organization. This project was also supported by matching funds by the Heart of Gold National Hospice Service Program, and was specifically implemented by the Chinese Social Work Education Association.

The National Hospice Service project reflects the modern medical model that supports the well-being of both the mind and body of the people. The project also introduces the role of the medical social work specialist which can promote the standardization of hospice social work service, and the establish of professional system. Besides the demonstration of feasibility, the project also projects a vision of the future medical social work model in hospice care.

From Li Ka Shing Foundation Newsletter

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