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Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust

Senior Social worker

Job Type






£51,488 - £57,802

Posted Date

15 February 2024

The Garway Medical Centre

Closing Date

28 February 2024

Main duties of the job
The applicants must have excellent social work and clinical skills with a special interest to work in maternal mental health, providing assessment using family work/ intervention models. Thorough assessment of risk, to formulate safe and effective risk management plans and documentation with the ability to communicate these clearly and concisely is essential. Experience of participating in formal child protection procedures and of being involved in inter agency work with families is required.

Working for our organisation
CNWL’s Perinatal Mental Health Services provides support for pregnant & postnatal women experiencing mental health /emotional difficulties in the boroughs of Brent, Harrow, Kensington and Chelsea, Hillingdon and Westminster, providing community and inpatient care.

As an NHS Trust we strongly encourage and support vaccination as this remains the best way to protect yourself, your family, your colleagues and of course patients and service users when working on our healthcare settings

Detailed job description and main responsibilities

To deliver, or support the delivery of, highly specialist evidence-based mental health assessment, care planning, treatment and review for women in the perinatal period.
To provide specialist consultation, advice and support to both CNWL, local Maternity Hospital in-patient and community services on best practice when working with women with mental health needs; at preconception, pregnant women and women with infants up to one year old.
To work jointly with care coordinators from CMHTs with a small complex and challenging caseload of pregnant women or those with an infant up to one year old.
To work in consultation with other professionals making known concerns regarding safeguarding children and/or adults to the appropriate and responsible service. This includes attending Child Protection and Review Conferences as appropriate where the child is at risk because of the mother’s mental illness.
To work with colleagues to establish a clear process and criteria for receiving referrals to undertake direct work or information for advice and liaison work.
To assist in setting up structures that allow the dissemination of knowledge and skills regarding working with perinatal women in both in-patient and community services.
To liaise and work with specialist tertiary services such as Mother & Baby Units, personality disorder services, eating disorder services etc.
To work with fathers, partners and significant others to provide appropriate education training and support.
To identify carers and refer/sign post for assessment as appropriate
To work as a member of the multi-disciplinary team exercising autonomous professional responsibility for managing a clinical caseload independently, providing highly specialist assessments and follow-up for women referred with complex problems, which includes assessment of risk in terms of self-harm, self-neglect, vulnerability, harm to others, domestic violence and safeguarding children.
To seek consultation where necessary with clinical supervisor and/or line manager on clinical work and participate in regular supervision.
To be mindful of the needs of women and their families from a wide range of racial, cultural, sexual, religious and social backgrounds and to develop, with colleagues, sensitive and innovative ways of meeting these needs.
To ensure that all Trust Perinatal service users have a perinatal care plan, which is implemented. This may require attending and contributing to pre and post-birth meetings,
To work with other professionals insupporting them to implement an agreed parent –infant care plan.
To attend the CNWL and out of borough Safeguarding Children multidisciplinary meetings and any other relevant multidisciplinary meetings within Maternity services, as appropriate.
To be responsible for monitoring, recording and reporting on clinical work and communicating highly complex clinical information to a variety of recipients (e.g. patient’s, families and carers, other professionals) orally and in writing.
To be responsible for developing and maintaining knowledge of local resources and developing excellent working relationships with relevant statutory, voluntary and community groups and organisations.
Person specification
Education and qualifications
Essential criteria

• Registered Social work qualification and evidence of current registration on HPCC register
• Evidence of continuing professional development
Desirable criteria

• Educated to degree level or equivalent
• Dual qualified as AMHP or Best interest assessor or Practice educator
• Specialist Training in perinatal & infant mental health
• Recently experience of perinatal mental health practice and/or safeguarding children practice
• Qualifications / training in specialist skills e.g. Family therapy/interventions/ psychological interventions
Essential criteria

• Professional knowledge acquired through degree /diploma
• Substantial experience post qualification
• Substantial experience post qualification working with women with serious mental illness
• Experience of managing a caseload of service users with evidence of completing high quality assessments
• Experience of working in a complex multi-disciplinary / multi-agency context
• Experience of formal child protection processes and inter-agency work with families
• Experience of undertaking complex social needs, mental state, risk and needs assessments
• Experience of working in a multi-racial/cultural community and of working with interpreters
Desirable criteria

• Experience of multi-agency pre-birth planning (CPA) for women with serious mental illness
• Evidence of networking within the Perinatal Psychitatry Specialty
• Experience of working in obstetrics and gynaecology
• Experience of planning and delivery of training in response to identified needs
• Experience of contributing to policies and procedures
• Experience of supervising mental health / non mental health professionals
Essential criteria

• Up to date knowledge of evidence based practice and current developments in perinatal psychiatry
• Knowledge about mental illness in the perinatal period
• Up to date knowledge of the Children Act 1989 and associated legislation and government policy and its implications for mental health services
• Knowledge and understanding of diversity and equality issues and their application in perinatal psychiatry services
• Knowledge & understanding of contributions of other disciplines and professionals to a multi-agency service
• Understanding of clinical governance and audit issues
• Understanding of issues around information-sharing in relation to Child Protection and Children in Need
• Knowledge of relevant Perinatal service models
• Knowledge of relevant legislation e.g. MHA, MCA
Desirable criteria

• Experience of conducting clinical audits
Essential criteria

• Sufficient clinical knowledge to be able to make autonomous decisions, based on analysis of complex presenting problems and judgement about available options.
• Team/self management and organisational skills that enable a number of complex activities and clinical work to be undertaken, revising and adjusting these according to the needs of individual patients and the service.
• Ability to contribute to and facilitate effective multi-disciplinary/multi-agency working
• Ability to implement evidence-based practice
• Ability to liaise and offer highly specialist consultation to other agencies effectively
• Ability to provide highly specialist therapeutic assessments and a range of therapeutic interventions
• Ability to effectively manage own clinical and administrative caseload and work under pressure at times of change
• Ability to identify, recognise and understand safeguarding children issues and refer appropriately
• Ability to develop and deliver training on perinatal mental health and associated issues such as safeguarding children, domestic violence
• Ability to provide supervision to staff within own and other disciplines and to use supervision effectively
• Ability to work flexibly across service boundaries and with professionals from health care settings such as maternity services
• Excellent communication and interpersonal skills, both oral and written
• Ability to work effectively with women from diverse minority ethnic and cultural backgrounds and with families with a high level of deprivation, social isolation, exclusion and stigma.
• Ability to work as part of a multi-disciplinary and ‘virtual’ team
Desirable criteria

• Computer literate to an intermediate/ advanced level
Personal Characteristics
Essential criteria

• Willing to engage in and use peer and group supervision creativity.
• Self-motivated with the ability to think laterally to problem solve.
• Ability to accept constructive criticism.
• Ability to meet deadlines.
• Ability to work under pressure and remain calm particularly in unpredictable situations where there may be exposure to highly distressed patients who may exhibit challenging behaviour
• Able to exercise initiative, flexibility and tact.
• Calm manner.

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