LA General Medical Center would like to recognize Mr. Darwin Givens who has worked as a Medical Case Worker since 2012. He specializes in working with patients who require complex medical and psychiatric care through the Consult and Liaison Psychiatry Service. The fact that many of the patients Mr. Givens treats are homeless and under Lanterman-Petris-Short Act (LPS) conservatorships from the Mental Health Court, means that a patient’s discharge plan and placement frequently need to take into account complex legal ramifications.
Mr. Givens, with the help of the multidisciplinary team at LA General Medical Center, was able to successfully coordinate the discharges of three long-term patients, two of whom had been hospitalized and waiting for placement for a year, and a third patient who had been hospitalized and waiting for placement for almost THREE YEARS. “Darwin’s work for coordinating care planning is a great example of how the social work discipline is a vital component in the continuum of care and advocacy for integration of service delivery systems needed for these extremely vulnerable patients,” stated Leticia C. Lara, LCSW, Director of Social Work Department.
Over the years, Mr. Givens put in a lot of effort to find these patients safe and suitable placements, collaborating with a variety of outside organizations involved in health delivery, including but not limited to the Department of Mental Health, the Offices of the Public Guardian in both Los Angeles and Orange County, Housing for Health, a huge number of skilled nursing facilities, and of course, the patients and their families. The end goal for patients under these circumstances is to successfully transition them to the least restrictive environment in the community to achieve wellness.
The high need patients Mr. Givens worked with required strong advocacy and navigation skills to access services within and outside of the hospital and the department. This was required to gain acceptance as a transfer to another care facility for continued care and supervision.
LA General leadership noted that through advocacy and commitment for patient care, Mr. Givens upholds the mission to provide world class care and educates the community about the breadth of services needed internal and external to the hospital.