Many of the diseases people suffer from today are chronic and degenerative (e.g. cardiovascular disease, adult-onset diabetes or HIV/AIDS), and bring with them a range of psychological and social issues. Health care practitioners do not cure these diseases, but take care of their patients by helping them understand and live with their conditions. Health, illness and disability: psychosocial approaches addresses the need for health care practitioners to be as skilled in working with and supporting people as in applying the assessment, therapy and/or treatment techniques for which they have been trained.
Health, illness and disability emphasises a multidisciplinary team approach. Relevant aspects of the text have been illustrated with examples of indigenous South African situations as well as those of other cultures. Discussion questions, classroom exercises and/or home assignments have been provided to facilitate learning and application of the material covered.
Contents include the following:
- Emotional reactions to a disabling condition or disorder
- Counselling, family-focused interventions, group work and community work
- Psychosocial issues in TB, HIV/AIDS, cardiovascular disease and stroke
- Psychosocial issues in chemical dependency
- Dying, death and bereavement
- The patient-practitioner relationship
- Multiculturalism, ethics and psychosocial issues in stuttering, cerebral palsy and autism
Health, illness and disability is intended as an academic text for student health care practitioners, as well as teachers of children with special educational needs, such as deaf learners. It is also intended as a ready reference for qualified practitioners and anyone interested in psychosocial approaches to health, illness and disability.
Eleanor Ross has a Master's degree (cum laude) and a PhD in social work. She is a Professor of Social Work and was Head of the Department of Social Work at the University of the Witwatersrand from January 2007 to December 2009. She previously spent 12 years in the social work field, followed by 18 years of lecturing in speech pathology and audiology at Wits. She is an author and researcher of over 80 publications in academic journals and books.
Andee Deverell has a Master's degree in psychology and was a lecturer in the Department of Psychology at the University of the Witwatersrand for eight years. She left academia in 2004 to join Mindset Network where she assisted in launching Mindset Health - an international health television and training programme. She now works for Standard Bank, in strategic issues management, where she conducts social and political research and analysis.