Hire Bereavement Counselors
If there is one primary qualification that a bereavement counselor must possess, it is compassion. Grief and loss are never easy. Bereavement counselors play a significant role in supporting people as they go through this difficult time.
Finding a bereavement counselor for your clinic or practice begins with writing an accurate job description. For a compelling job post, hiring managers should be clear, concise, and detailed. Are you looking for candidates who live in a specific area? What is the schedule? Is prior experience required? Carefully outline the responsibilities as well as requirements. These details will help candidates picture themselves working in your clinic or institution.
Additionally, bereavement counselors are also referred to as “grief counselors.” It may help if the job description includes this term to widen the selection pool and so that results show up in online hiring platforms.
Aside from general job boards, it is best for hiring managers to post job announcements on healthcare-specific job boards, online groups, and communities as well. Getting referrals from other medical professionals and employees themselves is a helpful way to source candidates. Your staff may already know someone with experience as a bereavement counselor, so let them know about the job opening.
Bereavement Counselor Responsibilities
A bereavement counselor helps patients explore their feelings and conducts their sessions calmly and respectfully. This allows the patients to share information that they are comfortable sharing. Through clinical observation and analysis, the bereavement counselor can then determine the interventions appropriate to the patient’s stage of grief. A bereavement counselor facilitates one on one or group therapy sessions.
Additionally, the bereavement counselor monitors the patient’s response and progress to evaluate the effectiveness of the treatment plan and adjusts as needed. Detailed documentation of notes and observations are made in each session and serve as a guide throughout the duration of treatment.
Depending on the needs of the patient, the bereavement counselor also recommends other resources and community support groups that are available to the patient. Lastly, the bereavement counselor may collaborate with other medical professionals for medication as needed. It is of utmost importance for bereavement counselors to uphold confidentiality and professionalism at all times.
Bereavement Counselor Skills and Qualifications
To qualify as a bereavement counselor, a candidate should hold a master’s degree in counseling with a specialty in grief and bereavement and a state license to practice as a bereavement counselor. Previous work experience in the same role is typically required.
The ideal candidate is someone who is compassionate, trustworthy, and professional. Candidates must have excellent active listening and problem-solving skills. Moreover, strong communication skills are a must as bereavement counselors interact closely with patients, their families, and other healthcare professionals.
The experience of loss is very personal. Be it the loss of a loved one, a miscarriage, a divorce, a pet, a job, or any other type of loss; people may need help coping and process their feelings. A bereavement counselor helps patients acknowledge and explore their feelings, cope with their grief, and feel that their grief is manageable in time.