From the earliest days of the profession, social work has evidenced recognition of the impact of poor economic and social conditions in the generation of health problems, disease and illness (Schlesinger 1985, Finger and Abramson 2002). It was through recognition of the central role that poverty and material conditions play in affecting (if not determining) the life chances and opportunities of people that social work’s predominant concern with the person in their psychosocial situation had its genesis.
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