I believe I am the ideal candidate for the RPL recognition being a licensed clinical social worker with several years of experience working with breast cancer and tobacco patients. I have played an active role in project management, participating in several organized professional conferences and workshops. A combination of exemplary academic credentials and years of real-life experience justify my qualification for the RPL accreditation.
I am a dedicated, ambitious, and hardworking individual with a major interest in making a positive impact on society. This passion drew me to clinical social work where, through coordinated efforts, I can help improve the health of humanity. I am a team player and work well with different teams to achieve a common goal. I can also work effectively with no supervision. I pride myself on my communication skills and believe that it is critical in building and sustaining collaboration between social workers and the public. I can offer value to your institution since I can leverage my experience to help my peers appreciate the value and connection between academia and clinical practice.
Bachelor's Degree in Sociology in the field of Social Studies – King Saud University, Riyadh, 2003.
The employee at the Ministry of Health- 2011 to present.
The role I played as a social worker and technical Advisor of Tobacco Control Programs gave me an opportunity to work with a diverse group of people and gain invaluable skills. As a social worker in the program, my roles included receiving patients, preparing social research on each patient, and developing comprehensive patient case studies. I collected the patient’s information on all issues pertaining to their social aspect among them the impact of illness on their behavior. As a director at the Tobacco Control Program, I was required to develop an annual executive plan and oversee its full implementation across different regions. Additionally, I was in charge of formulating the annual plan for initiating World Tobacco Control Day across the regions of the kingdom. Another critical role was to supervise the preparation of scientific material that would be used in publications and education in line with the nation’s scientific committee. I worked in the position of Technical Advisor of Tobacco Control Programs for a year and as a social worker for the Ministry of Health for nine years qualifying me for RPL since my practice was in the relevant context. As a social worker in the program, I provided the best possible level of social care to those who wish to quit smoking according to Saudi guidelines. My role included registering and assessing smokers, carrying out counseling, pharmacological therapy, and a follow up afterward.
Code of Ethics
My professional experience as a social worker meets the relevant learning outcomes based on AASW practice standards. Under the AASW practice standard of values and ethics, my professional experience allowed me to demonstrate ethical considerations and values that include: informed consent, confidentiality, and respect for autonomy. As a social worker, I was tasked with registering, assessing, and counseling individuals who wanted to quit smoking. It was my role to promote informed consent by ensuring that participating clients understood what the program entails. In the cases where the client had limited capacity to comprehend, I took my time to explain to them in accordance with their level of understanding.
Under the code of ethics, I also respected the client’s right to confidentiality. During the whole program, I was privy to confidential client information including their social circumstances and family life. As a social worker, I made sure to respect their right to privacy, I made sure not to intrude unnecessarily on their privacy as I sought information. I obtained consent before putting any information shared in the final report. I also treated information from family members of the client with the same level of confidentiality. During the counseling sessions, I also made sure to respect the client’s right to privacy and only obtained information they were comfortable sharing.
The work also exposed me to the importance of professionalism in executing my duties. Professionalism entails working with integrity, accountability, reliability, and commitment. The elements of professionalism can be gauged by how I dealt with tasks, with others, and with myself. As I carried out my duties as a social worker, I ensured that I was organized and managed time properly. I prioritized my meetings, made sure I met all deadlines, and followed up appropriately with all patients weekly in the first month and every two weeks for 2 months after counseling. I also showed interest and initiative by asking relevant questions to senior members of the tobacco control team.
I also displayed professionalism when I was dealing with patients and other members of the tobacco control team. I was able to embody this trait by maintaining professional and personal boundaries with the patients as I addressed them, collected information, and prepared case studies. I understood that it was important to maintain my well-being as I served the patients. Attending conferences and seminars further helped me appreciate social work as a profession that encourages collaboration and networking to make significant changes. I was able to improve my communication with participants and colleagues by recognizing non-verbal cues and appropriate use of written communication. I also made sure to be respectful to all patients.
Working with people from different regions and cultures helped me put into practice the AASW practice standard of culturally responsive and inclusive practice. I recognized and respected the diversity of the patients I interacted with from various ethnicities, disabilities, age, sexuality, and gender. Understanding the specific social context of patients enrolled in the program also made me appreciate the differences that exist among individuals. Furthermore, I had to demonstrate knowledge for practice when I was tasked with creating an executive plan for Tobacco Control that would be implemented across all the regions of the Kingdom. I had to be knowledgeable to supervise the preparation of scientific material in social work. My duties necessitated applying knowledge to practice, a key AASW practice standard. The executive plan for the Tobacco Control Program was based on outlines offered as well as the goal of the intervention.
My experience was crucial in developing my communication and interpersonal skills. I made sure that I communicated clearly, coherently, and respectfully to all participants in the program. I was able to build rapport with the patients as I made follow-up case studies. During counseling sessions, I had to recognize and respond to non-verbal cues and respond to them accordingly. I also created a good rapport with my fellow professionals in conferences, at seminars, and through coordinated planning as well as during the execution of the annual executive plan. I engaged several stakeholders in making decisions on the executive plan and hold interviews with relevant personnel.
Information and record sharing as a practice was important during the preparation of individual case studies. I informed the patients about their social work records and noted crucial information, closely eliminating any potential source of biases. The data obtained and recorded were kept confidential, respecting the right to autonomy as well as ethical standards in handling personal patient information. Moreover, I demonstrated professional development and supervision by actively engaging in continuous career development and seeking feedback from supervisors.
While undertaking the role of a clinical social worker in the ministry of health and as a Technical Advisor of Tobacco Control Programs, I integrated the systems theory as well as cognitive behavioral therapy into practice. These concepts assisted in ensuring I was able to attend to the expectations of my clients. For instance, the former provides guidelines on the appropriate approach to data collection.
The Systems Theory was proposed by Parsons and Merton, stating that an individual is a result of the interaction between people and their environment. It is based on biological sciences with the following concepts. Firstly, people are not isolated but operate within a wider network or ‘system’. The system could either be informal, formal, or public. A change in any component of the wider system could impact the system as a whole. I came to appreciate this postulation in practice as I performed my duties as a social worker. To prepare the individual case studies, I had to collect information from the client on their family, workplace, hobbies, transport, school, and other social factors surrounding the client. I realized that all these factors directly or indirectly contributed to the well-being of the patients. The information gathered could be demonstrated in an eco-map showing the different systems affecting the individual. Applying the system theory in practice has helped me appreciate the importance of having a holistic view to understand the context of behavior. The one downside of the concept is that it fails to offer solutions that will challenge oppressive social systems. In systems theory, the social worker works on all those factors that are involved in influencing the behavior and welfare of the client. It includes the use of tools, methods, and measures to include social settings, family, friends, and various other factors to work on the welfare of the clients. For example in a smoker client, the social worker should work for the well-being of the client by maintaining the client’s autonomy, confidentiality, and providing culturally safe care. Being a social worker, the client should be encouraged for healthy habits and the environment should be effectively evaluated and worked upon professionally.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) theory states that an individual’s behavior is influenced by how they interpret the environment. The guiding principle behind the concept is that one’s thoughts play a central role in defining their behavior; how one sees and interprets the world determines behavior. CBT places emphasis on changing a dysfunctional thought to improve behavior. Advocates of the postulation claim that it is suitable in social work as it is time-limited and problem-centered. CBT is also cost-effective and outcome-focused, making it preferable to a wider scope of professionals. The prescriptive framework and content of CBT mean that it does not require ‘expert’ delivery. However, critics of CBT complain that it often has a narrow focus where complex problems are reduced to a few identifiable behaviors. Additionally, opponents of the ideology argue that the prescriptive structure of CBT is rigid and does not give professionals sufficient wiggle room.
I applied the CBT theory in practice while working with tobacco users as a social worker. I collected information from clients including all social aspects from family and surrounding contacts to create a comprehensive case study. The interventions I proposed for these patients was in line with CBT guidelines for helping improve behavior. Methods such as cognitive restructuring and biofeedback helped the patients in their efforts to eliminate the habit of smoking. On the national scale, interventions for tobacco control utilized a similar approach with investments being directed to assist smokers to re-learn their behaviors. I also ensure that the clients are treated with effective communication and interpersonal skills to help them generate healthy and personal development. As a social worker, I also ensure that there are information sharing with the clients by the records is well maintained and effectively delivered to the clients. However, I always take into consideration that effective supervision was maintained for the clients. This ensures that there is an active involvement of the client with active learning. The social worker should always work as per the ethics and boundaries of professionalism, this helps in resolving the various complexities in the social worker’s profession.
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