Commission for Case Manager Certification issue brief offers tools and tips for hiring qualified case managers
New team-based models of care, aging population and health reform all spell changes in how health care is delivered
MOUNT LAUREL, NJ, March 19, 2012— New team-based models of care such as the patient-centered medical home and accountable care present exciting opportunities for case managers, who are the go-to resource for coordinating care and helping patients navigate a complex system. Finding the right person to fit the case management role is also a tremendous challenge for the health care industry. A new issue brief from the Commission for Case Manager Certification (the Commission) outlines the pathway for health plans, hospitals and even primary care providers to find, train and hire the right individuals to take on these new roles.
Case managers provide a range of critical services as part of the health care delivery team, including designing and monitoring care plans, coordinating care provided by multiple providers and facilitating communication among the players. New models of care that emphasize care coordination require a robust cadre of professional case managers who are current, skilled and well-suited to the demands of the position.
But the case manager workforce is aging, and there are few academic programs specifically designed to nurture a younger generation. Most case managers learn the role on the job after coming from a background in nursing or social work.
The issue brief, “Cultivating the accountable case manager: New models of care, increased demand make robust workforce development essential,” offers the “why and how” answers employers need to identify and train case managers to meet the increasing demand. It features the expert voices of Patrice V. Sminkey, RN, the Commission’s chief executive officer, and Hussein Tahan, DNSc, RN, knowledge editor, Case Management Body of Knowledge™ (CMBOK®) and executive consultant for the Commission. Tahan has conducted extensive research into case management workforce issues.
“Case management is both art and science—not every registered nurse or social worker makes a good case manager,” Sminkey said. “Case managers must possess the ability to work collaboratively with other members of the care team and identify the essential resources to meet the physical, social and emotional needs of the client. Those characteristics can rarely be evaluated based on a resume alone.”
The issue brief, a free download at http://www.ccmcertification.org/node/760, offers nuts and bolts in the recruitment process, including sample interview questions to probe candidates about:
- Understanding the relationship with providers;
- Dealing with stress;
- Navigating cultural differences;
- Considering the perspective of the client and family members;
- Developing leadership skills; and
- Managing conflicting priorities.
The issue brief also offers five tips for recruiting professional case managers in non-traditional places—beyond the usual advertising venues. For example, the Commission recently launched its Career Center, an online resource where case managers can browse for jobs and employers can post opportunities. The Career Center is online at http://careercenter.ccmcertification.org.
The issue brief also goes past the hire and offers employers ideas for orientation and onboarding new case managers, including insights about mentoring and how to structure professional development opportunities.
“The Commission continues to serve as a resource to the industry as new players seek to hire and train the people who have the potential to make a real difference in health care,” Sminkey said. “The stakes are high for employers advancing these models, to ensure clients get the right services at the right price and at the right time.”
About the Commission for Case Manager Certification
The Commission for Case Manager Certification is the first and largest nationally accredited organization that certifies more than 30,000 professional case managers. The Commission is a nonprofit, volunteer organization that oversees the process of case manager certification with its CCM® credential. The Commission is positioned as the most active and prestigious certification organization supporting the practice of case management. For more information, visit www.ccmcertification.org, connect with CCMC on Facebook or follow us on Twitter @CCM_Cert.