Before the COVID-19
pandemic, Ms Eunice
Chin (pictured below) and her team of
Medical Social Workers
would visit patients and their
family members at the wards
to interact with them and build
rapport. She is the Team Lead and
Manager of the Department of
Medical Social Services at Bright
Vision Hospital (BVH), which
is managed under SingHealth
“Before the COVID-19
pandemic, we made it a point
to meet with every patient
because some of them might
have problems that they might
not have shared with the clinical
staff,” she said.
Ms Chin and her team also
conduct psychosocial assessments
to better understand how to assist
“For example, with patients
who had suffered a stroke,
we would find out how their
family is coping, and if they
are struggling to reconcile with
losses of sorts, including the
loss in mobility and functions.
Sometimes, patients may also
have other underlying issues that
can affect his or her psychological
well-being,” Ms Chin said.
Some of these issues may
include parenting, marital or
financial difficulties, which Ms Chin
would then refer to social services
agencies for better management.
A team effort
Ms Chin likens her work to the
“social arm” in patient care,
where she works alongside a
multidisciplinary team comprising
doctors, nurses and allied health
professionals to care for patients.
The multidisciplinary team
meets regularly to communicate
information such as patients’
discharge plans so that all members
have a holistic understanding of
patients’ needs and condition.
To improve the emotional
well-being of patients and their
caregivers, Ms Chin would conduct
regular group sessions to engage
them in fun activities.
One example is the Reminiscence Therapy sessions that
Ms Chin and her
colleagues used to run
before the pandemic
hit. During these
Social Workers would
engage the elderly
patients by displaying
and showing pictures
of vintage collectibles
to evoke their memories
and nostalgia, and
“This encourages patients to
take a walk down memory lane,
and allows us to better connect
with them when they share their
stories with us,” Ms Chin said.
Ms Chin and her team also ran
quarterly memorial services for
bereaved families whose loved
ones had passed on in BVH. “We
want to let them know that their
loved ones are remembered while
also bringing some closure for the
family,” she explained.
“These memorial services
are always very emotional and
meaningful for family members.
For the team, it is also meaningful
and gratifying knowing that we
can make a difference to both
patients and their families,”
Ms Chin has been working at BVH
for 10 years, during which she
has been through her fair share
When the hospital was
converted into a COVID-19 Care
Facility in April 2020, Ms Chin
and the other Medical Social
Workers were part of the team
of frontliners who were tasked
to care for COVID-19 patients.
During that period, many of the
patients were migrant workers. It
was especially challenging due to
the language barrier, as some did
not understand English.
“We had to find creative ways
to work around this situation.
For example, we used Google
Translate when translators
were not available. Colleagues
who could speak the respective
languages also stepped forward
to help. With time, a rapport was
built with the patients, and we
were able to connect better with
them during that difficult period.”
Despite these challenges,
Ms Chin is passionate about
helping patients. She credits her
team for supporting her through
both good and tough times. “I am
thankful to my team. We believe
in working hard and helping one
another. With this spirit, we can
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