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The main difference between clinical and direct social workers is what each is legally allowed to do. All social workers can connect clients with resources and offer guidance through difficult situations, but only clinical social workers can provide counseling treatments.
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Patient counseling is an important part of the Medical Social Worker's role. Medical Social Workers lead support group discussions, provide individual counseling, help patients determine appropriate health care and other health services, and provide support to patients with serious or chronic illnesses
While both mental health counselors and clinical social workers must earn a master's level degree, their educational paths will differ. ... Though clinical social workers develop the skills to provide psychotherapy, their job duties differ slightly from counselors.