Hospital Social Worker Careers

A hospital social worker is responsible for helping a patient cope with the news or diagnosis of an adverse health condition. They also assist patients and their families with understanding their medical condition and offer options for necessary changes in housing, healthcare, diet, and lifestyle.

Some of the most essential duties of a hospital social worker are patient counseling and education, discharge planning, and patient advocacy. They may also help patients find support groups that will help them cope mentally and emotionally.

Although a master's degree is preferred by some employers, a hospital social worker can qualify with a bachelor's degree in social work or psychology coupled with at least one year of work experience in the industry.

A hospital social worker is expected to have excellent communication skills, be compassionate toward others, and have deep knowledge of adverse medical conditions. They may work in stressful environments, but their career is a rewarding one.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a hospital social worker. For example, did you know that they make an average of $31.49 an hour? That's $65,490 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 11% and produce 81,200 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Hospital Social Worker Do

There are certain skills that many hospital social workers have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed communication skills, emotional skills and interpersonal skills.

When it comes to the most important skills required to be a hospital social worker, we found that a lot of resumes listed 14.9% of hospital social workers included patient care, while 9.6% of resumes included health care, and 9.5% of resumes included mental health. Hard skills like these are helpful to have when it comes to performing essential job responsibilities.

When it comes to searching for a job, many search for a key term or phrase. Instead, it might be more helpful to search by industry, as you might be missing jobs that you never thought about in industries that you didn't even think offered positions related to the hospital social worker job title. But what industry to start with? Most hospital social workers actually find jobs in the health care and hospitality industries.

How To Become a Hospital Social Worker

If you're interested in becoming a hospital social worker, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 48.0% of hospital social workers have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 34.5% of hospital social workers have master's degrees. Even though most hospital social workers have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a hospital social worker. When we researched the most common majors for a hospital social worker, we found that they most commonly earn bachelor's degree degrees or master's degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on hospital social worker resumes include associate degree degrees or high school diploma degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a hospital social worker. In fact, many hospital social worker jobs require experience in a role such as social worker. Meanwhile, many hospital social workers also have previous career experience in roles such as social work internship or internship.

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Average Salary
$65,490
Average Salary
Job Growth Rate
11%
Job Growth Rate
Job Openings
31,749
Job Openings

Hospital Social Worker Career Paths

Top Careers Before Hospital Social Worker

Top Careers After Hospital Social Worker

Hospital Social Worker Jobs You Might Like

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Tell us your goals and we'll match you with the rights job to get there.

Average Salary for a Hospital Social Worker

Hospital Social Workers in America make an average salary of $65,490 per year or $31 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $68,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $62,000 per year.
Average Salary
$65,490
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Best Paying Cities For Hospital Social Workers

City
ascdesc
Average Salarydesc
Tacoma, WA
Salary Range65k - 76k$71k$70,995
Salt Lake City, UT
Salary Range59k - 75k$67k$66,959
Austin, TX
Salary Range39k - 61k$50k$49,512
$39k
$76k

Recently Added Salaries

CompanyascdescCompanyascdescStart DateascdescSalaryascdesc
Hospitality Workers
Sodexo
08/06/2021
$31,30508/06/2021
Hospital Social Worker
Recruitment Specialists, Inc.
08/05/2021
$75,13208/05/2021
Hospitality Workers
JMI Resource
08/05/2021
$25,04408/05/2021
Social Worker or Human Services Professional IV-Hawaii State Hospital
State of Hawaii
07/26/2021
$55,20007/26/2021
Hospitality Workers
JMI Resource
07/09/2021
$25,04407/09/2021
See More Recent Salaries

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Hospital Social Worker Demographics

Gender

female

72.1 %

male

23.6 %

unknown

4.3 %

Ethnicity

White

65.8 %

Black or African American

17.4 %

Hispanic or Latino

11.3 %

Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

55.2 %

French

10.3 %

Japanese

6.9 %
Show More Hospital Social Worker Demographics

Hospital Social Worker Education

Majors

Degrees

Bachelors

48.0 %

Masters

34.5 %

Associate

7.9 %

Top Colleges for Hospital Social Workers

1. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

2. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill, NC • Private

In-State Tuition
$8,987
Enrollment
18,946

3. University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$56,225
Enrollment
19,548

4. California State University - Long Beach

Long Beach, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$6,798
Enrollment
31,503

5. Boston College

Chestnut Hill, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,464
Enrollment
9,639

6. San Diego State University

San Diego, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$7,488
Enrollment
30,018

7. Florida State University

Tallahassee, FL • Private

In-State Tuition
$5,656
Enrollment
32,072

8. Hunter College of the City University of New York

New York, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$7,182
Enrollment
16,205

9. Case Western Reserve University

Cleveland, OH • Private

In-State Tuition
$49,042
Enrollment
5,131

10. Boston University

Boston, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,948
Enrollment
17,238
Show More Hospital Social Worker Education Requirements

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Top Skills For a Hospital Social Worker

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 14.9% of hospital social workers listed patient care on their resume, but soft skills such as communication skills and emotional skills are important as well.

Best States For a Hospital Social Worker

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a hospital social worker. The best states for people in this position are California, Connecticut, Nevada, and Oregon. Hospital social workers make the most in California with an average salary of $85,956. Whereas in Connecticut and Nevada, they would average $78,087 and $73,695, respectively. While hospital social workers would only make an average of $71,896 in Oregon, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Connecticut

Total Hospital Social Worker Jobs:
752
Highest 10% Earn:
$103,000
Location Quotient:
1.31
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. California

Total Hospital Social Worker Jobs:
6,128
Highest 10% Earn:
$114,000
Location Quotient:
1.21
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Oregon

Total Hospital Social Worker Jobs:
966
Highest 10% Earn:
$85,000
Location Quotient:
1.35
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Hospital Social Workers

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Top Hospital Social Worker Employers

1. Intermountain Healthcare
4.5
Avg. Salary: 
$53,957
Hospital Social Workers Hired: 
11+
2. St. Johns Hospital
4.1
Avg. Salary: 
$61,138
Hospital Social Workers Hired: 
7+
3. Mount Sinai Health System
4.5
Avg. Salary: 
$54,213
Hospital Social Workers Hired: 
5+
4. LGC Hospitality
3.8
Avg. Salary: 
$54,687
Hospital Social Workers Hired: 
4+
5. Buffalo Wild Wings
4.1
Avg. Salary: 
$64,301
Hospital Social Workers Hired: 
3+
6. Denver Health
4.6
Avg. Salary: 
$62,871
Hospital Social Workers Hired: 
3+
Updated August 18, 2021