Arizona State Hospital

Social Services Department

Mission Statement

The mission of the Social Services Department is in alignment with the mission of the Arizona State Hospital: “to assist and support those individuals requiring specialized inpatient psychiatric services in developing the skills needed to rebuild and create meaningful and valued lives.”

Program Description

Social Services are an integral part of each multi-disciplinary treatment team. These teams strive to establish a climate of hope and possibilities by creating individualized opportunities for our patients while delivering treatment in a recovery oriented manner. As a result of recognizing the inherent nature of change, Social Services strive to provide the most up-to-date, evidence based, culturally competent, behavioral and emotional care. We prioritize active involvement of employee training & education, thereby leading to compassionate, informed patient care.

From admission to discharge, the Social Services Department is involved in all phases of patient treatment. Commencing with the receipt of the potential patient’s application for admission and transfer to inpatient status, Social Services coordinates care with treatment teams during their admission and through to discharge planning and reintegration to the community. Once a patient is admitted to our Hospital, Social Services maintain on-going contact with the patient’s support system, including family and community service providers. Social Workers strive to advance coordination of care by acknowledging that most of our patients have been intimately involved in treatment teams prior to their inpatient status at AzSH and therefore upholds open communication with all Regional Behavioral Health Authorities, Tribal Health Authorities, and the various service providers associated with the Department of Economic Security in the State of Arizona.

Scope of Services


Potential admission packets are reviewed and clinically summarized by our licensed MSW who also monitors a wait list in accordance with statutes while working closely with the T/RBHA, Court and other referral sources. Final authority to accept or deny a referral lies with our Chief Medical Officer.

Intern Program

Social Services has as a customer Arizona State University and the unit Social Workers and BSW’s serve as Field Instructors for the ASU, School of Social Work- Graduate and Undergraduate Internship Programs. This successful platform allows interns to realize their marketable acquisition of varied skills as superior Social Workers.

Benefits Manager

The Benefits Manager is involved from pre admission until discharge and meets directly with patients after admission and throughout their stay. Our Manager is responsible for ensuring that patients maintain the benefits they already have, initiating benefits for those that qualify during their stay, while making sure benefits are in place at the time of discharge.

Pastoral Care

The Social Services Department is fortunate to include Pastoral Care Services and the Hospital Chaplain and Deacon work closely with the Social Work staff in the provision of quality driven services. A description of these services is included on this site.

Laura Kandel, LCSW-C,
Director of Social Services

Social Services Administration

Laura Kandel, LCSW-C
Director of Social Services

Kimberly Goff
Patient Benefit Manager