NORTHERN Ireland’s Emergency Social Work Service received 2,731 referrals from the Western Trust area between April 2015 and March 2016.
According to a new report brought before the Western Trust Board, more than half of the referrals from the Western Trust came from the Family and Child Care programme of care.
The Regional Emergency Social Work Service (RESWS) provides an emergency Out of Hours social work response across all five Trusts in Northern Ireland.
It’s remit includes Family and Child Care, Learning Disability, Mental Health, Vulnerable Adult and Older People’s Services.
According to the report, staff working within the emergency response service are reporting an increase in the complexity of cases being referred to them.
The service has four bases across the province, the most local being in Londonderry.
It operates from 5pm to 9am, Monday to Friday and offers a 24 hour service at weekends and on public holidays.
According to the report, the largest number of referrals to the service across the region between April 2015 and March 2016 came from the PSNI, followed closely by referrals by family members and latterly hospital staff.
Still in its inception, the third annual report for RESWS says the Western Trust has the lowest number of referrals at 2,731.
The highest, in the Belfast Trust, was 6,769.
The latest figures show that the Western Trust had 356 Mental Health referrals to the emergency out of hours resource by the end of March 2016.
A further 316 came under Older People’s Services, 133 werefor people with physical disabilities and 133 were for individuals with learning disabilities.
Seven vulnerable adults within the Western Trust area were referred to the emergency out of hours service.