Care and Counselling (Tan Tock Seng Hospital)

The Care and Counselling Department at Tan Tock Seng Hospital (TTSH) supports patients — and their families — to cope with their illness or injury.


Tan Tock Seng Hospital’s (TTSH) medical social workers attend to patients and families who are facing emotional, psychological, social, environmental and practical problems arising from illness or the sudden onset of traumatic injuries.

Together, the multidisciplinary team, community partners and organisations aim to facilitate the recovery and healing process, optimise the well-being of the patient and his/her family, and ease the patient back into joining the community.

Social Work Case Management

Financial and Practical Assistance
Referral services for those who encounter financial difficulties
Assistance with medical bills for needy patients
Assistance with care equipment and non-consumables

Discharge Care Planning and Post-discharge Follow-Up
Assessment of care needs
Counselling services and education of patients and families about community resources and possible options
Coordination of arrangements for the care plan as identified by the patient and family
Conducting home visits as required to monitor post-discharge adjustment
Provision of emotional and practical support

Psycho-emotional Support
Evaluation of formal and informal resources
Assessment of coping ability and support network
Provision of appropriate intervention in management of acute, chronic and terminal illness
Community networking for continuity of care 
Advocacy, educational and vocational services

Counselling and Therapy Services
The TTSH Care and Counselling Department offers a safe and private setting where patients can explore and learn to cope with the problems arising from illnesses or disabilities. The service operates strictly by appointment. The counselling and therapy services include:
Individual counselling
Family therapy
Couple counselling
HIV counselling
Disability counselling
Grief and bereavement support

It is often a difficult time for patients and their loved ones when patients are inflicted with a critical or life-threatening illness and admitted to the intensive care unit.

Patients and their loved ones not only have to grapple with the complexity of their medical condition/s and treatment, but also have to deal with a myriad of secondary losses, such as the threat of loss of life, functional abilities, employment, income and the like.

To help patients and their loved ones through this trying time, the Care and Counselling department provides:
Timely support to cope with the difficult circumstances
Holistic care by addressing psycho-emotional and social needs
Comfort and help to alleviate anxieties and stress

Crisis Management and Intervention
The Care and Counselling department offers risk assessment, interventions, safety plans, emotional support and psychological first aid for patients and families coping with:
A suicide attempt
Family violence
Abuse and neglect
Sexual assault
Post trauma

Transitional Care
This service includes:
Support for patients at their home for three to six months after their discharge from an acute hospital
Follow-up by the multidisciplinary team at the patient’s home until he or she:
No longer requires follow-up from the service
Accesses step-down care services from the home nursing foundation
Obtains other home medical care providers for continual nursing care

The service aims to minimise readmission to acute hospitals in the event that post-discharge patients are not well-supported with medical care immediately after their discharge from hospital.

Community Health Engagement Programme
This is a fall prevention programme designed for elderly people who are still mobile. The service aims to detect health problems early for treatment, and to minimise hospitalisation and premature institutional care. All participants will receive the following services:
A comprehensive health screening
An exercise programme for six months designed by a physiotherapist
Continued training and support by volunteers on the exercise programme
Home safety assessment for participants by an occupational therapist
Follow up on modifications to improve home safety
Case management for patients with psychosocial problems

Advanced Care Planning
Advanced care planning is the process of planning for the patient’s future healthcare needs. The team provides discussions with patients to help them: 
Explore the following issues: 
Their understanding of their medical condition and potential complications
Their concept of living well
Their illness experiences
Their values and goals in life
Their goals in medical treatment
Identify a healthcare proxy who will help make decisions on the patient’s behalf when he/she is not able to do so
Communicate the patient’s preferences to their loved ones so they can honour his/her wishes

Group Therapy and Support Groups

Coping with a major or chronic medical condition can be difficult for both patients and family members. Support groups are an important source of psychosocial and emotional support. These groups provide a platform for patients and family members to share experiences and learn how to cope better with their condition. The team offers a range of support groups, tailored for the unique needs of patients and family members it is working with.

These support groups include the following:
Brain Tumour Support Group
Parkinson’s Disease Support Group
Myasthenia Gravis Support Group
HIV Women’s Support Group

Education and Training
This service:
Provides clinical supervision for junior social-work professionals and undergraduates
Provides attachment opportunities for social work undergraduates
Teaches undergraduates and postgraduate students at the National University of Singapore, Singapore Institute of Management, and Monash University (External Programme)
Provides in-house training for hospital staff 
Counselling skills
Management of grief and loss
Awareness of issues with interpersonal violence
Collaborates with other healthcare professionals in evidence-based research to improve delivery of healthcare services 
Conducts evidence-based research in healthcare systems for optimum clinical outcomes in patient care and delivery of services

How to Contact TTSH Care and Counselling Department

Tel: 65 6357 8222
Fax: 65 6357 8223


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