A social work career in mental health





autoethnography, social work, Southwark, the Maudsley, mental health


This piece is intended to show how with a commitment to continuous professional development, changing trends and practices in a profession can be reflected in the work of an individual practitioner, and in turn the study of individual careers can provide a wider understanding of the way change has been interpreted and implemented. A single career will see many structural changes of direction and emphasis, and if a practitioner is staying abreast of the twists and turns in policy, these should be reflected in their practice. This can become even more apparent when an individual, with promotion, moves through positions with differing levels of responsibility, and therefore engages with policy change from different perspectives. The article highlights a number of good practices encountered in promoting better services for mental health service users, and how an individual can be an agent for improving the implementation of policy.

Author Biography

Nick Hervey, Maudsley Trust (Retired)

Dr Hervey worked for 20 years at the Maudsley, was Head of Mental Health for the London Borough of Southwark for 10 years, and has published on the history of Mental Health.  


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How to Cite

Hervey, N. (2022). A social work career in mental health. Social Work and Social Sciences Review, 23(2), 72-85. https://doi.org/10.1921/swssr.v23i2.2084