Health care support workers (HSWs) play a fundamental role in international health care systems, and yet they remain largely invisible. Despite this, the number of HSWs is growing fast as governments strive to combat illness and address social care issues in a world of finite resources.
This original collection analyses the global experience of HSWs in the UK, Japan, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Portugal, Sweden and The Netherlands. Leading academics examine issues including the interface of HSWs with the health professions, regulatory practice risks, employment challenges and the dilemmas of an ageing population. Crucial future policy recommendations are also made for a world becoming increasingly dependent on HSWs.
“Support workers have long been ignored in sociological analyses of the health and social care workforce. This collection seeks to change this and in so doing makes a major contribution to the field.” Jonathan Gabe, Royal Holloway, University of London
"The contribution of health care support workers has been highlighted during the COVID-19 crisis. Saks and colleagues provide a well-written and informative discussion with analysis and description that has the potential to inform current and future workforce planning." Ian Peate, Gibraltar Health Authority
Mike Saks is Emeritus Professor at the University of Suffolk and Visiting Professor at the University of Lincoln, Royal Veterinary College, University of London, University of Westminster and the University of Toronto, Canada.
Introduction: Support Workers and the Health Professions ~ Mike Saks
Health Professionals, Support Workers and the Precariat ~ Mike Saks and Katherine Zagrodney
Unpaid Informal Carers: The ‘Shadow’ Workforce in Health Care ~ A. Paul Williams and Janet M. Lum
The Management and Leadership of Support Workers ~ Mike Dent
Regulation, Risk and Health Support Work ~ Mike Saks and Judith Allsop
The Interface of Health Support Workers with the Allied Health Professions ~ Susan Nancarrow
Support Workers in Social Care: Between Social Work Professionals and Service Users ~ Andreas Liljegren, Anna Dunér and Elisabeth Olin
Health Professionals and Peer Support Workers in Mental Health Settings ~ Aukje Leemeijer and Mirko Noordegraaf
Complementary and Alternative Medicine as an Invisible Health Support Workforce ~ Joana Almeida and Nelson Barros
Personal Support Workers and the Labour Market ~ Audrey Laporte, Adrian Rohit Dass, Whitney Berta, Raisa Deber and Katherine Zagrodney
The Role of Health Support Workers in the Ageing Crisis ~ Miwako Hosoda