This assessment will talk about the psychosocial assessment of a patient in ANC care.
The patient is an aboriginal mother and has referred herself on her own to the social worker. She was referred because of her alcohol relapse issues. She has identified her alcohol relapse issues herself for a referral to a social worker. The patient and her family have a long history of issues with child protection. Her husband also has a very long history of child protection involvement-as a child and also as a support person for his sister. The mother has had five children. She had to relinquish care for her children due to her relapse issues. All five children have been under the care of the child protection services-statutory body due to the same. Her major concern was her fear of going back into relapse during her current pregnancy. The child protection services also showed concerns for her relapse behavior and referred her to the social worker because of her history of relinquishing care of her children in the past. Overall, the couple and the family have had a traumatic history. The mother was willing and cooperative through the complete process, but the husband seemed a little reserved and protected due to his history of interventions from social workers and child protection. She has had previous experiences of working with social workers.
She has had five previous pregnancies and had poor antenatal care for all of them in the past. She had difficulty in rearing the children and could not keep them under her care because of her alcohol issues and her relapse. So, she had extreme concerns about the same with her current pregnancy as well. Currently, she engaged well with the midwives and was concerned about the health of her baby and stopped taking alcohol as well. She was also worried about her relapse issues. A peri-natal family conferencing was organized for the family to manage the ANC care for the mother. She has had her trauma history and alcohol relapse issues. All her previous children were relinquished from her and were in the care of child protection services. She was extremely concerned about her own health and the safety of this baby due to her history of alcohol use. She wanted to do the best for her baby and was improving on her health and ANC appointments as well. Her husband was very supportive of the pregnancy and joined in all the peri-natal conferences. Seeing her open up about her past and trauma, he also opened up to talk about his personal experiences and how they are impacting him. Their relationship was supportive and he wanted to take the baby home because it was his first baby. However, they seemed to have different ideas about the baby in terms of taking the baby home and what both the father and mother think of as safety for the newborn baby.
Her personal family history was traumatic. Her mother died within the last twelve months at a very young age and she had lost the father of her first three children at the age of 23. Both deaths were sudden and she had lots of grief and loss which was unresolved. This was her sixth child and her first child with her current husband. The husband was very sure he wanted to take the baby home. The mother also showed a similar interest but, the social worker was not sure if she was genuine in her concern or was only saying it out of her husband's insistence for the same. The usual assumption for social workers working with cases around ANC is that mothers would want to take their baby homes, but sometimes it's not the case. Sometimes, other ways to keep the baby safe need to be found.
Preparation for the baby
The mother claims she wants to keep the baby. However, the child protection services and the social worker, both think that it might not be a possibility. She is concerned and worried about the safety of her baby and if she will be able to provide for and take care of her baby safely because of her alcohol issues. She thinks she won’t be able to manage the baby on her own and that the baby won’t be safe with her. Eventually, she relinquishes care of the baby to the father and kinship model.
Other concerns for the child at risk
There are safety concerns for the child because of the mother's history of alcohol use and relapse. She has had a personal traumatic experience with her previous pregnancies and has relinquished her children to child protection services. The mother, the social worker, and the child protection services are all concerned about the safety of the baby due to the mother’s issues with alcohol relapse and her personal history of loss and trauma. She has currently stopped taking alcohol but, has a history of consuming spirits every day – at least one or two bottles every day.
Social work impressions
The mother was extremely engaging with the social worker and was willing to discuss her current state, her thoughts, and concerns about herself and her pregnancy with the worker. She was open about her thought processes and her concerns about the safety of her baby and her own behavior around the same. The mother was very aware of her own situation and condition of alcohol relapse. She wanted to give her best and the best possible ANC care to her baby and therefore she stopped with her alcohol consumption and referred herself for social worker guidance and help. She was very aware and concerned about the safety of her baby. Although, it might seem like the end of the story was not good, she had to relinquish this baby as well to the father and kin care. However, this decision by the mother was also a part of her greater care and concern for the baby. Even though it was not a typical happy end with the baby going home with the mother, it was still a safe end for the baby and future.
The social worker would want to keep counseling the mother for her alcohol relapse issues to help her cope and improve her condition while she is in the rehabilitation center. Also, she would want to help her cope with her trauma, grief, and sadness as well.
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