What is a Care Manager?


A Care Manager is a human service professional who specializes in assisting clients and their families meet their short- and long-term care and housing needs. The need for Care Managers has increased in recent years as the options for home-based and community care has exploded. Sorting through these choices can be daunting task, particularly if a family member works long hours outside the home or lives hundreds or even thousands of miles away.


How can I benefit from using a Care Manager?


Care Managers help clients navigate the range of choices for medical care, housing and additional services. At AZA our Care Managers know which housing options are appropriate for their elder, disabled, and mentally ill clients and for clients with other chronic and episodic medical conditions. Care Managers can help explain the often confusing directives of health insurance. Most importantly, Care Managers find solutions to optimize their clients’ quality of life. AZA’s Care Managers are committed to maximizing independence and autonomy while remaining mindful of safety and security concerns. AZA strives to ensure that the highest quality services and resources are used when and where appropriate.


What are the qualifications of a Care Manager?


Care Managers are licensed in their individual specialties as required by state laws; i.e. nursing, social work, psychology, etc. In 2006, the National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers members voted to approve a new requirement that ALL members must hold at least one of four approved care management certifications. As of January 1, 2010, all current and renewing Care Manager members must possess one of the four accepted certifications listed below: Care Manager Certified (CMC), offered by the National Academy of Certified Care Managers (NACCM); Certified Case Manager (CCM), offered by the Commission for Case Manager Certification (CCMC), and Certified Social Worker Case Manager (C-SWCM) and Certified Advanced Social Worker in Case Management (C-ASWCM), offered by the National Association of Social Workers. Care Managers at AZA hold both advanced degrees from top colleges and universities, and are also certified by at least one of the aforementioned organizations.


What sets AZA apart from other care management practices?


AZA has been in business for 20 years. All of our clinicians have many years of practice as Care Managers and most have career-long experience in not only eldercare but services of all ages. Our interdisciplinary team is made up of social workers from varying disciplines, an RN and a Gerontologist. Because our team shares real experiences and up to date resources on an ongoing basis, our clients enjoy not only the information they get from their individual Care Manager, but also the benefit of all our team members’ experiences and skills. We pair our clients with a Care Manager that has particular knowledge about the geographic area where the client resides or wants to move, creating a more efficient and cost-effective process, while not compromising the expertise of the clinician. Most important, AZA’s Care Managers and administrative staff are committed, compassionate and professional.


Questions to ask when looking for a Care Manager


What are your credentials and degrees?
Are you licensed in your profession?
What related organizations are you a part of?
How long have you been providing care management services?
What services do you provide?
Are you available for emergencies?
Do you provide home care services?
How do you communicate information to me and my family?
How many Care Managers work with your organization?
Will I work with one Care Manager, or with a team of Care Managers?
What are your fees and will there be a written agreement that specifies initial services?
Can you provide references?