Practice in the field of social gerontology is one of the developing frontiers in social work. Now and in the foreseeable future, services with a population that is growing older will be a rapidly expanding field of practice. Many of the programs for older adults are multidisciplinary and demand collaboration among several professions and services. In some instances social work is and will be the central organizing force assuming administrative responsibility. In other instances social workers are collateral with several professions, and in still others social work services are an adjunct to another service profession, such as medicine nursing, urban planning, public administration, law or adult education.

While specialized services for the aging are not new within social work, the rapid demographic changes in the population of middle aged and older people and the predictions for the future have necessitated some new approaches to services. The study of gerontology which emerged in the 60's, and the translation of the findings of the research into programs of work with older adults, should have a considerable impact on social work practice.

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