Workshop on Integration Knowledge Building Within the Agency


Grace Christ, Assistant Professor, Columbia University School of Social Work, New York, NY

Practice-Research Collaboration at the Interorganizational Policy Level: HomeRebuilders -- A Family Reunification Demonstration


Fred Wulczyn, Policy Analyst, New York State Department of Social Services and Assistant Professor, CUCSSW, New York, NY; Donald K. Smith, New York State Department of Social Services, New York, NY

Dr. Wulczyn and Mr. Smith presented an example of complex practice-research collaboration involving a large state agency and multiple local social service organizations, namely the New York State HomeRebuilder program. In July 1993, the New York state Legislature passed and governor Mario Cuomo signed legislation authorizing the New York State Department of Social Services to conduct a three-year, $70 million research and demonstration project designed to test whether discharge planning and aftercare s ervices leaf to early discharge of children from foster care. The cornerstone of the HomeRebuilder project is a prospective reimbursement system that grants foster care providers greater discretion over the funds used to pay for foster care at the same ti me it limits the total amount of reimbursement. The process of collaboration demonstrates how research can be used to organize a variety of viewpoints around a complex social problem and produce a solution that supports programmatic, organizational and re search needs.

Practice-Research Collaboration Among Hospital Social Work Administrators


James P. Donnelly, Director of Social Work, Goldwater Memorial Hospital, New York, NY; Sona Euster, Associate Director of Social Work, New York Hospital, New York, NY; Michael A. King, Director of Social Work Discharge Planning, St. Fra ncis Hospital, Roslyn, NY; Mildred D. Mailick, Professor, Hunter College School of Social Work, City University of New York, New York, NY

This team discussed the response of the Society for Social Work Administrators in Health Care, The Metropolitan New York Chapter, Inc., to current demands for information about practice, productivity and effectiveness with the constraint of little time to produce the data. In 1987, the local chapter's membership initiated a research committee to design an d conduct specifics, time-limits studies involving current problems of member facilities. To date, studies have examined the nature of hospital socia l work departments' data collection systems, time expenditures of social workers in acute care and rehabilitation hospitals, the nature of disagreements in discharge planning and the expansion of outpatient services in health care settings. Committee memb ers and retired social work directors implement the research. Response rates from constituent hospital social work directors and their staff have been excellent. Presenters emphasized that this approach to generating knowledge for practice has eliminated the gap between the practitioners and researchers: "They are one and the same."