Social work is a diverse and useful profession with a rich history that both reflects and energizes the society and the social institution it serves (Jack, 1999:3). Social welfare service captures and illustrates the multidimensional- nature of social work profession, while demonstrating at the same time, how the Nigerian society has shaped the emerging services as a form of social work.
The impact of social welfare services in an article in a journal tagged, the National Association of Social Workers, No. 30 – 1980, Professor David T. Boniface who happened to be the head Department of Sociology in the University of Ibadan, stated that social welfare service plays a paramount role in the treatment of their clients. There are certain situations when patients come to hospital with sickness that are either directly or indirectly in consonance with social problems which need the attention of a medical social worker for an effective and successful treatment. Such situations come into being in the case of a client with family problems such as maltreatment or diverse. Other instances are drug abuse or addiction among youths, and scenario when a lady who got married but hates sex simply because she was way backed raped at a tender age, so the traumatic experience keeps on vibrating. All these sort of problems can lead to mental illnesses and in order to provide a solution to them, the attention of a social worker is needed more than that of a medical doctor. It is against this backdrop that social welfare units are created in hospitals; and training as well working facilities to conduct such services are mostly provided by the Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development.
As an indispensable arrow in the quiver social welfare reflects and deals with the contextual nature of ever society. In Kaduna state for instance, communities are characterized by many ethnic groups, cultural backgrounds, lifestyles and social problems of high and low magnitude and a large number of people out of this, categorization are served by social workers when their attention is needed.
Social welfare service appears to be the eldest of the social work profession. Middleman and Wood (1990), it was first practiced by Almoners in the 1950 in Britain. Here in Nigeria, social welfare service was first practiced in Lagos and Ibadan teaching hospitals in the early 1960s. But then, just like other people whom serve as an integral part of social welfare service, social welfare workers were overshadowed by some doctors in the hospital which resulted to less regard and recognition.
With the prevalence of emotional and social illnesses in the society, people began to understand and appreciate the significance of social welfare services, hence the constitution with which the social welfare workers work is being social welfare services is agreed to be unique and best approach towards dealing with based on the context of their health situation which could be triggered by physiological, physical or social factors. It is also being considered as the most appropriate process or methodology in determining the pathological condition of a sick person.
1.2 Statement of Problem
The need for social welfare services in Barau Dikko Specialist Hospital, Kaduna cannot be overemphasized in view of the government’s determination at both state and federal levels towards if not eliminating, reducing to the nearest minimum, preventive deaths and improving the health status of Nigerians.
The delivery of social welfare is faced with certain obstacles and people have not been able to access social services due to the existence of the problems that amongst which are unconducive working environment, poor salary, lack of working environment, poor salary, lack of working materials, inadequate number of personnel, lack of basic skills etc.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
i) The major aim of this study is to identify the impact of social welfare services in Barau Dikko specialist Hospital, Kaduna.
ii) Identify the involvement of professional social worker in dealing with social welfare service in Barau Dikko specialist hospital.
iii) Identify ways through which adequate social welfare services can be improved in Barau Dikko specialist hospital.
1.4 Significance of the Study
The importance of this study or research is to enable specially patients to know the relevance of welfare services in Hospitals in order to link them so as to be able to fully benefit from the services and opportunities available there from.
The study also goes further to state the problems affecting social welfare services in Nigerian hospitals as well as improving adequate solutions to the problems.
The research is significant as it emphasizes the role of social welfare agencies dealing with social- problems, thereby improving the life quality of citizens through counseling, intensive care, and accessible vital health. Facilities that people can be adequately, psychologically and socially adjusted in the society.
The research will also serve as a guide in helping individuals, upcoming students etc in the field of social development especially for reference purpose in their various project works and endeavours.
1.5 Research Questions
i) How do we identify professional social workers in service delivery in Barau Dikko specialist Hospital?
ii) To what does Barau Dikko specialist Hospital have professional contributions to social welfare services?
iii) Of what are the measures to be taken in order to improve welfare services in Barau Dikko specialist hospital?
1.6 Scope of the Study
The scope of this study or research work covers the key area of concern that is the problems and prospects of social welfare services in Nigerian hospitals with direct focus on Barau Dikko specialist Hospital, Kaduna.
1.7 Definition of Terminology
- Social Welfare: In this study, it is an institution designed by security to help individual with psychology problem. It tries to help individuals who are unable to solve their social problems unaided. Such services are provided to help individuals attains satisfactory standard of life.
- Social Problem: Here, social problem is seen as any behaviour which is regarded as abnormal compared to the norms and values of the society. Examples: delinquency, disabled people, mental retardation etc.
- Society: This is where group of people come together to occupy a particular area or territory and share the same similar or even different beliefs.
- Social: This is the relationship between people who live as a result of interaction.
- Social Services: In this study, social services is an institution which had had been developed to meet the personal needs of individual members of society not adequately or effectively met by either the individuals from his/her own family resources or by commercial or individual concerns.
- Hospital Care: In this research, is a a programme or coordinated palliative and supportive service that provide physical, psychological care for dying patients and their family.
- Hospital: This is an institution that provides medical, surgical, or psychiatric care and treatment for the sick or the injured people.