Case Management

"Case Management" is another step beyond "Assistance." A better name might be "Care Management" because it provides help in arranging for long-term care needs and supports in your desired setting.

When is Case Management Necessary?

Case Management may be called for when a person is released from the hospital after an illness or accident. It may be needed because a family caregiver is unable to handle increasing care needs. Case Management may be called because a family wants to know what options they have in caring for an elder, or because a person needing care wants to talk to someone about their options.

Case Management helps to identify what care needs a person has by performing a Comprehensive Assessment of their needs and resources. Then the Case Manager works with the individual or family to determine their options for getting needed care. Finally a "Plan of Care" or "Service Plan" is drawn up which reflects the person’s choices for receiving care. The plan details what problems must be solved, what activities will solve the problems, and who is responsible for each activity. Most Service Plans are a mix of services provided by family members, outside agencies and sometimes the person themselves. Services from outside agencies may be state supported or privately paid.

Guiding Principles

Case Management has three guiding principles:
  1. The best plan is the one that allows the most independence and self-care.
  2. Outside services should supplement, not replace, care being provided by families and friends.
  3. The person needing care or their closest family members make the decisions about their care.
Case Management is there to help develop a plan of care that suits the individual and his/her situation. This includes a person’s preferences as well as needs. Case Management stays involved to assure that the plan is implemented properly. Sometimes changes are made to reflect changes in the client’s condition or because the plan does not work as anticipated. The Case Manager helps solve problems that come up as the plan is implemented. When the plan is stable, Case Management is terminated.

Case Management as described above is available in conjunction with state in-home care programs or through the Family Caregiver Support Program.