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What is a Care Manager?

Byron Cordes – Sage Care Connection – Post #1:

I have been a Social Worker for over 30 years. This profession evokes questions and preconceived notions from consumers and healthcare professionals alike. The more positive renditions cast social workers as therapists, community organizers, or helpers to vulnerable populations. These, at least, serve as starting points for a conversation about what my training and licensure mean.

If I said I was a lawyer, you might ask “what kind of lawyer…personal injury, business, or divorce?” But when I say, “I am an Aging Life Care Manager®”, most people stare blankly at me. Society has no starting point from which to view this profession. I have been proud to work as an Aging Life Care Manager (also known as a Geriatric Care Manager) for the past 18 years. I must admit, it is difficult to explain. I hope you leave this post with at least a taste of what defines a “care manager”, and then I hope to broaden and deepen your understanding in the weeks to come.

A care manager is a professional (meaning licensed and/or certified) with training in health or human services. Most are social workers or nurses; but there are many with backgrounds in sociology, gerontology, or psychology. The professional then receives additional training and direct experience working with our aging and disabled populations. With all of this training, licensure, and certifications, the care manager has a firm knowledge of the services available to seniors/adults with disabilities and their families. This includes medical, mental health, social, financial, legal and more. We strongly suggest you only consider a care manager who is a member of the Aging Life Care® Association, which establishes strong professional standards and a code of ethics.

Many other service providers can help seniors and families with one specific concern or type of concern, such as a placement agency or home care advisor. A single service may be all a particular client needs, but only an Aging Life Care Manager® takes a holistic perspective to assessing and providing a spectrum of help. Therefore, this approach combines all of the different facets of care with the client’s unique needs in mind. We call this a “care plan” – a comprehensive written plan which addresses the client’s needs, and takes into consideration local resources, their cost and quality. I like to say (a little tongue in cheek) that a good care manager can save the average family a hundred hours on Google.

If you are interested in learning more about care management services from Sage Care Management, please check out our website (www.sage-care.com) or give us a call at 210-492-1224. #sagecaremanagement #sagecareSA #sagecareconnection

 

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