Social Work

Providing Advocacy, Support and Resources When Your Family Needs it Most

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The Role of Hospital Social Workers

Social Work

Social Workers are leaders in making sure people get the help they need, when they need it, from the best resources available.  As members of the health care team at Nationwide Children's Hospital, we promote wellness through prevention, care and recovery.  Social workers are skilled in identifying strengths and needs.  We provide advocacy, emotional support and linkage to community resources.

Our Mission Statement

Clinical social workers practice in collaboration with the health care team as licensed professionals whose core values promote the dignity of all people and the importance of human relationships.

We engage with families to identify and address barriers to wellness.  We focus our work on the relationship between family function and medical illness.  Our practice is grounded by an evidence-informed body of knowledge and our primary motivation is to support the strengths of families to address their own needs.

We engage services within the hospital and greater community to further support optimal family functioning.

About Social Work

The Social Work Department is comprised of social workers that work in a variety of settings throughout Nationwide Children's Hospital.  They cover both inpatient and outpatient care areas on the main campus, the Emergency Department and the Primary Care centers.

Common discussions social workers engage in with families include:

  • Patient and Family adjustment to illness/injury
  • Patient and Family coping with stress
  • Grief & Loss issues
  • Discharge Planning for home
  • Safety & Crisis Intervention

About Social Work

Leadership Team

Jeanette Foster, MSW, LISW-S
Director of Social Work and Language Access Services
(614) 722-1567

Jill Karnes, MS, MSW, LISW-S
Social Work Supervisor / Education Coordinator
(614) 722-1818

Lori McCullough MSW, LISW-S, C-ASWCM
Social Work Supervisor
(614) 722-1819

Contact Our Team 

To get in touch with a Social Worker during normal business hours please call (614) 722-6300.

For after hours assistance please contact the hospital operator at (614) 722-2000.

Fast Facts

  • Clinical Social Work at Nationwide Children's Hospital started in 1950. That’s 60 years and growing strong!
  • Nationwide Children's Hospital has 10 social workers that have worked here more than 20 years; 4 social workers have worked here more than 30 years!
  • Social Workers are licensed by the state of Ohio to practice social work.
  • The United States currently has more than a quarter million licensed social workers.  That’s about 5100 social workers per every state!

Additional Resources

Visit CAP4Kids.org/Columbus for information on common patient concerns, such as help with utilities and bills, counseling resources for children, and respite resources for parents. For other social work questions, contact us at (614) 722-6300.

The Columbus Blue Jackets Foundation Family Resource Center was designed by families and professionals to support patients and families during their time at Children's Hospital, both inpatient and outpatient.  It is located on the green path, close to the chapel, which allows families to quickly access all major public areas of the building. You can contact the center by calling (614) 722-2252.

Special Education Advocacy

Each year, Nationwide Children’s Hospital hosts a Special Education Advocacy program for parents and professionals who care for children with special education needs. Click the links below to view full recordings of our most recent programs.

Additional Quick Links