Occupation Summary

Healthcare Social Workers

O*NET 21-1022.00


Provide individuals, families, and groups with the psychosocial support needed to cope with chronic, acute, or terminal illnesses. Services include advising family care givers, providing patient education and counseling, and making referrals for other services. May also provide care and case management or interventions designed to promote health, prevent disease, and address barriers to access to healthcare.

Annual Wages:
Employment Rate:
Employment is expected to increase by 25.29%.
Education Level:
Master's Degree. According to O*Net, the majority of people employed in this occupation have this level of education.
Public Service

  1. Collaborate with other professionals to evaluate patients' medical or physical condition and to assess client needs.
  2. Investigate child abuse or neglect cases and take authorized protective action when necessary.
  3. Refer patient, client, or family to community resources to assist in recovery from mental or physical illness and to provide access to services such as financial assistance, legal aid, housing, job placement or education.
  4. Counsel clients and patients in individual and group sessions to help them overcome dependencies, recover from illness, and adjust to life.
  5. Organize support groups or counsel family members to assist them in understanding, dealing with, and supporting the client or patient.
  6. Advocate for clients or patients to resolve crises.
  7. Identify environmental impediments to client or patient progress through interviews and review of patient records.
  8. Utilize consultation data and social work experience to plan and coordinate client or patient care and rehabilitation, following through to ensure service efficacy.
  9. Modify treatment plans to comply with changes in clients' status.
  10. Monitor, evaluate, and record client progress according to measurable goals described in treatment and care plan.
  11. Supervise and direct other workers providing services to clients or patients.
  12. Develop or advise on social policy and assist in community development.
  13. Oversee Medicaid- and Medicare-related paperwork and recordkeeping in hospitals.
  14. Conduct social research to advance knowledge in the social work field.
  15. Plan and conduct programs to combat social problems, prevent substance abuse, or improve community health and counseling services.
  16. Plan discharge from care facility to home or other care facility.

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National Industry Employment Patterns

Industry % of Healthcare Social Workers employed Annual Growth Rate
Home health care services 10.8 4.06
Nursing care facilities, skilled nursing 8.8 0.06
Offices of physicians 3.1 1.84

Labor Market Information

2018 Statewide average hourly wage $28.41
2018 National average hourly wage $28.11
2016 National employment 176,500
2016 Texas employment 10,410
Texas projected employment by 2026 13,043
Texas projected annual employment and Turnover openings through 2026 1,430

* Due to confidentiality rules, not all regions may have the data displayed. The sum of all the regions may not be equal to the state total.

Top 10 Relevant Knowledge Areas Relevant Importance Levels
Therapy and Counseling
Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.
Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
English Language
Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Customer and Personal Service
Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
Sociology and Anthropology
Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.
Education and Training
Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
Medicine and Dentistry
Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.
Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
Law and Government
Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.
Philosophy and Theology
Knowledge of different philosophical systems and religions. This includes their basic principles, values, ethics, ways of thinking, customs, practices, and their impact on human culture.

Top 10 Relevant Skill Areas Relevant Importance Levels
Active Listening
Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Social Perceptiveness
Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
Critical Thinking
Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
Reading Comprehension
Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
Service Orientation
Actively looking for ways to help people.
Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Complex Problem Solving
Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
Judgment and Decision Making
Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Top 10 Relevant Abilities Relevant Importance Levels
Oral Expression
The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
Oral Comprehension
The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
Written Comprehension
The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
Problem Sensitivity
The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
Deductive Reasoning
The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
Inductive Reasoning
The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
Speech Recognition
The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
Speech Clarity
The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
Written Expression
The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
Fluency of Ideas
The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).

  • Getting Information
    -- Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
  • Assisting and Caring for Others
    -- Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
    -- Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
    -- Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
    -- Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
Other Activities

  • Adapt response to match client socioeconomic condition
  • Advise clients and customers on technical matters
  • Advise individuals regarding health matters
  • Advise individuals regarding marriage
  • Advocate for patient treatment, needs, or rights
  • Answer questions from customers or the public
  • Answer questions from employees or colleagues
  • Assist clients with understanding personal problems
  • Assist individuals with developing or improving work skills
  • Assist workers to resolve work problems
  • Collect social or personal information
  • Communicate health and safety information
  • Compile data on human physique, social customs, or artifacts
  • Compile data or information related to social service or health programs
  • Conduct behavior modification
  • Conduct individual, group, or family interventions
  • Conduct interviews to gather information
  • Conduct patient assessments
  • Conduct program evaluations
  • Coordinate interagency support efforts
  • Coordinate social service activities with resource providers
  • Counsel people regarding issues, problems, or grief situations
  • Decide which psychological tests to administer to clients
  • Determine program eligibility
  • Determine social service program status
  • Develop life, physical, or social science policies, procedures, or standards
  • Develop medical policies, procedures, or standards
  • Develop plans for programs or projects
  • Develop public policies, procedures, or standards
  • Develop treatment plans
  • Document medical prognosis
  • Empathize with others during counseling or related services
  • Encourage group and organizational participation
  • Evaluate client progress against measurable recorded goals
  • Evaluate patient or client response to therapy or treatment
  • Evaluate patient's skills or capacities
  • Evaluate therapy needs of patient or client
  • Identify childhood or adolescent diseases
  • Identify home safety hazards
  • Identify interrelationships among individuals or social groups
  • Identify interrelationships among social statistics or indicators
  • Identify physical or emotional abuse
  • Identify symptoms of addiction, withdrawal, or detoxification
  • Maintain awareness of social trends
  • Maintain confidentiality of data
  • Maintain dental or medical records
  • Manage detailed case records in a clinical or social work setting
  • Match clients to community resources
  • Monitor children to detect signs of ill health or emotional disturbance
  • Monitor client progress
  • Motivate employee behavior and performance
  • Observe patient or client condition
  • Perform continuing education to maintain licenses, certifications, qualifications, and knowledge currency
  • Perform emergency medical procedures
  • Perform safety inspection
  • Perform scientific research
  • Plan social behavior learning activities
  • Process medical records
  • Provide care for mentally ill or special needs individuals
  • Provide in home patient care
  • Record client's personal data
  • Record medical history
  • Refer clients to community services or resources
  • Refer patients to community resources
  • Research health improvement issues
  • Resolve worker or organizational conflicts or grievances
  • Respond to employee or worker concerns
  • Respond to parent or student concerns
  • Supervise subordinate personnel or contractors
  • Teach family members to provide bedside care
  • Teach medical self care

  • Achievement
    - Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
  • Relationships
    - Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.


Desktop computers: Desktop computers;

Notebook computers: Notebook computers;

Personal computers: Personal computers;


Calendar and scheduling software: Calendar software;

Data base user interface and query software: Command Systems ComServe; Database software; Relational database software;

Desktop publishing software: Microsoft Publisher; Adobe Systems Adobe PageMaker;

Electronic mail software: Email software;

Internet browser software: Web browser software;

Medical software: Patient electronic medical record EMR software; James Frazier Associates DataStart; Medical records software; Automated clinical information systems; Social Solutions ETO Software; Social Work Software ClientTouch;

Office suite software: Microsoft Office software;

Presentation software: Microsoft PowerPoint; Information presentation software;

Spreadsheet software: Microsoft Excel; Spreadsheet software;

Web page creation and editing software: Web page design and editing software;

Word processing software: Word processing software; Microsoft Word; Corel WordPerfect software;

Related O*NET occupational titles for Healthcare Social Workers include:
  • 21-1021.00 Child, Family, and School Social Workers
  • 19-3031.03 Counseling Psychologists
  • 21-1012.00 Educational, Guidance, School, and Vocational Counselors
  • 21-1013.00 Marriage and Family Therapists
  • 21-1023.00 Mental Health and Substance Abuse Social Workers
  • 21-1014.00 Mental Health Counselors
  • 43-4051.03 Patient Representatives
  • 21-1011.00 Substance Abuse and Behavioral Disorder Counselors

Contact Texas Workforce Commission
Labor Market and Career Information  |  101 E. 15th Street, Annex Room 0252  |  Austin, Texas 78778
Official Website  |  1-800-822-PLAN (7526)  |  512.936.3200

** The information in this report may be derived from many sources like O*NET, BLS (Bureau of Labor Statistics), OOH (Occupational Outlook Handbook), and Career One Stop.