Childrens Services

Children’s Hospital Social Work Team

Providing support for children in hospital and their families and carers

Who we are

The Children’s Hospital Social Work Team provides support to children (and their families and carers) who need treatment at either the Great North Children’s Hospital, Royal Victoria Infirmary or Freeman Hospital.  The Social Work Team is part of Newcastle City Council’s services for children.

What we do

When a child needs to come into hospital it can be very worrying and can cause financial and practical problems.

We work with children, their families and carers to provide emotional and practical support, information and advice at a time that can be stressful.  The social workers in the team all work in slightly different ways, so don’t be afraid to ask.

Ways we could help

Provide emotional support if you feel distressed or overwhelmed by the situation.

Work with other professionals, both hospital and community based, throughout your stay in hospital, and to help plan a safe discharge home.  This could include referring to your local Children’s Social Care, Health Services, Housing and other organisations for support.

Provide information on how to access benefits.  Support applications to charitable trusts for additional expenses, e.g. travel costs, subsistence or specialist equipment.

We will enable you to ensure your views are heard by other professionals and agencies.

Advocate on your behalf with other professionals and agencies.

If you live in Newcastle and your child has a serious illness or complex health problem, we can continue to support you when your child is discharged from hospital.


Frequently asked questions

How do I contact a hospital social worker?

Each ward will contact the social work department on your behalf, if you wish.  Alternatively you can telephone the department directly.

Freeman Hospital:  0191 213 7393

Great North Children’s Hospital / RVI:  0191 282 6078

Some wards have a designated social worker.  Other wards share a social worker.

All can be contacted on the above numbers.

When are the social workers available?

The department is open Monday to Thursday 8.45am to 5pm, Friday 8.45am to 4.45pm.

 What if I need to speak to a social worker in a hurry?

A ‘duty system’ is in operation each day.

If your ward social worker is not available, social work support can still be provided.

An out of hours service is available via Newcastle City Council, however, this is for emergencies and not general use.

Why have social work support?

Having a child in hospital can be a very traumatic experience.

A social worker can help to support you in this.  You may have other children and need advice with childcare, or need to take time off work and need help arranging your matters.

The majority of families that use our service welcome the social, emotional and practical support available.

Do I have to have a social worker?

No.  Hospital social work support is your choice.

Being in hospital is expensive.  Can the social worker help with this?

The social worker will be able to access benefits advice and may be able to assist with charitable applications to help reduce some of the cost.

Is there a charge for social work services?

No, social work support is provided free of charge.

What if English is not my first language?

The wards and social workers are able to access interpreters so that you can still receive support.

The Wards

Great North Children’s Hospital

Ward 1a         Renal & Gastroenterology
Ward 1b         Neurology Unit
Ward 2           Respiratory & General Paediatrics
Ward 3           Bone Marrow Transplant Unit
Ward 4           Oncology (supported by the CLIC Sargent Team)
Ward 6           Paediatric Day Unit
Ward 7           Paediatric Haemodialysis Unit
Ward 8           Surgical Day Unit
Ward 9           Children’s Surgical Ward
Ward 10         Orthopaedics
Ward 11         Burns & Plastics Unit
Ward 12         Paediatric Intensive Care Unit
Ward 14         Oncology Day Unit (supported by the CLIC Sargent Team)
Ward 35         Special Care Baby Unit

Freeman Hospital

Ward 23         Paediatric Cardiothoracic Ward
PICU              Paediatric Intensive Care Unit

For more information you can contact Children’s Hospital Social Work Team:

Phone:            0191 282 5334                    
Fax:                0191 230 2866

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