The CCM: One of the best investments you can make in yourself

Posted by MaryBeth Kurland, CAE, CEO, Commission for Case Manager Certification on 09/25/2019 - 11:07 AM

The future outlook for board-certified case managers is exceptional.

Over the last few years, we’ve witnessed growing appreciation for board certification, especially from employers. They don’t merely prefer case managers who are board-certified; increasingly, they require them: 44 percent of employers require the Board-Certified Case Manager (CCM®) credential, and 58 percent pay for the exam.1

None of this happens in a vacuum: New models of care delivery emphasize care coordination, team-based care, and other case management roles. That’s only part of the picture, though. It ultimately comes down to the clients’ needs: I am convinced the pace and direction of population growth will heighten the need for case managers who are prepared to inform, support and engage. We know:

  • Baby Boomers are aging.
  • An increasing number of chronically ill patients are maintaining an improved quality of life through newly developed drugs and requiring complex, ongoing treatment.
  • More people are on the move, making care coordination more difficult.
  • As a nation, we’re more ethnically, racially and culturally diverse.

With an emphasis on patient-centric care, case managers are fueling an information and engagement focused evolution in healthcare. Professional case managers are in a unique position to enhance the ability of their teams—even their organizations—to deliver culturally competent care to individuals of all ages. Health systems need professionals who can engage with patients, meet them where they are and help them navigate the increasingly complex system.

The numbers support the relevance of the CCM. Our recent survey of CCMs found: 

  • Salaries are on the rise for those who are board-certified, with the majority earning more than $80,000 annually.
  • 88% say certification has had a positive impact on their career.
  • 94% have recommended the CCM to other case managers.
  • 75% of supervisors who are CCMs highly prefer or require the CCM when hiring experienced case managers.

At the Commission, we’re working to ensure that the professional case manager’s role is acknowledged as essential to the delivery of quality, cost-effective and efficient care. One of my personal goals is to increase the number of talented people choosing case management as a profession, and who seek certification as a differentiator.

Board certification demonstrates that a case manager has the experience and knowledge it takes to advocate for clients with complex challenges, collaborating with peers in today’s team-based care environment. The CCM validates professional readiness and competency. It underscores allegiance to ethical practice – that’s important to employers, clients and other members of the health team. As the only cross-setting, cross discipline case manager credential for health care and related fields that is accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies, the CCM is the gold standard for case manager excellence.

Another important goal is to make the connection for employers and other health care leaders that the CCM credential designates case manager readiness and competency. Employers and other organizations look to care coordination and well-managed care transitions across the continuum as key components to successful client outcomes. The credential’s inter-disciplinary focus enhances every board-certified case manager’s ability to negotiate solutions in concert with others on the team. That’s important for problem solving as care settings become more integrated.

Those three little letters – the CCM behind the board-certified case manager’s signature – represent preparedness to meet today’s challenges and leverage tomorrow’s breakthroughs for improved health outcomes, a better patient experience, smarter spending and greater professional satisfaction.

Are you ready to join over 46,000 board-certified case managers who have a lifelong, fulfilling career they are proud to renew for decades? If the answer is yes, review the eligibility requirements to become a better case manager and to invest in you!


1 All data in this article is from 4,683 responses to the survey, “Health2 Resources and CCMC, Professional and Demographic Characteristics of CCMs” January 2019.

Originally published in September 19, 2019

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