Gerontological Practice for the Twenty-first Century: A Social Work Perspective / Edition 1

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Gerontological Practice for the Twenty-first Century meets the need for state-of-the-art information on practice approaches with older patients that are age-specific and empirically based, blend "micro" and "macro" views, and reflect current themes in the aging and social work fields. The book is designed as a text for students and as a professional resource for practitioners. Clearly written, the book offers an expert and comprehensive review of the current literature and focuses on issues relating to the most vulnerable older people. Gerontological Practice for the Twenty-first Century also features case illustrations throughout and brief end-of-chapter questions for review.

The book has four parts. Part 1 reviews current and classic theories of aging and proposes an original framework for an integrative approach to practice with older people that incorporates both individual and policy-level interventions. The approach is based on current themes such as a life course perspective, heterogeneity, diversity, and inequality. Part 2 covers such common and important psychological problems among older individuals, as anxiety, depression, suicide, substance abuse, and dementia, and describes appropriate, evidence-based interventions. Part 3 considers the social psychological picture by discussing working with older families, end-of-life care, bereavement, and work and retirement. Part 4 focuses on core sociopolitical issues in the lives of older people: economic policy, poverty, health policy, quality-of-life concerns, and social services.

Current, authoritative, and original, this single-volume gerontology resource will be of valuable use to graduate students and practitioners.

Columbia University Press

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Editorial Reviews

Connie Corley

The only textbook in gerontological social work to provide comprehensive coverage of both policy and practice. The rich case studies interwoven into each chapter illustrate the complexities of today's field of aging. Yet it also lends itself well as an interdisciplinary resource because of the depth of coverage of a wide range of topics.

Betty J. Kramer

Infusing a multidisciplinary life course and diversity perspective, Gerontological Practice for the Twenty-first Century offers a comprehensive and practical resource for understanding the contemporary needs of elders and their family members in social psychological and sociopolitical contexts. The authors give thoughtful attention to the historical and contemporary factors contributing to the experience of aging and their implications for gerontological social work practice and policy.

Gerontology - Hannes Staehelin

A highly recommendable book for all professionals in the field.

Activities, Adaptation, & Aging - Robin J. Jacobs

An insightful, authoritative, and practical resource.


This book would serve well as required reading... Highly Recommended.


This book would serve well as required reading... Highly Recommended.

A highly recommendable book for all professionals in the field.

— Hannes Staehelin

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780231107495
  • Publisher: Columbia University Press
  • Publication date: 3/18/2008
  • Series: End of Life Care: A Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 512
  • Product dimensions: 5.70 (w) x 8.60 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Virginia E. Richardson is a professor at the Ohio State University College of Social Work. She is the author or coauthor of several books, including Retirement Counseling: A Handbook for Gerontology Practitioners.Amanda S. Barusch is a professor at the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand. She is the author of several books, including Foundations of Social Policy: Social Justice in Human Perspective.

Columbia University Press

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Table of Contents

Preface IXAcknowledgments XIOverview and Theoretical PerspectivesSocial Work Practice in the Twenty-first Century 3Theories of Aging 22Integrated Gerontological Practice 48Stages in Gerontological Practice 64Psychological Problems and InterventionsAnxiety Reactions Among Older People 91Depression Among Older People 110Suicide Among Older People 132Substance Abuse Among Older People 146Dementia 169Social Psychological Problems and InterventionsSocial Workers and Aging Families 201Social Work Practice and End-of-Life Care 235Bereavement in Later Life 264Work and Retirement 293Sociopolitical IssuesEconomic Policies and Aging 315Poverty and Aging 338Health Policies and Aging 355Improving the Quality of Life: Social Services and Aging 378References 393Subject Index 453Name Index 471

Columbia University Press

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