There are few specialists who are harder to find today than those working in the field of elder care. And so it is only fitting that a Geriatric Case Manger would be a natural step. Having a Geriatric Case Manager is just another tool to help you through the torrents of information and countless sources of information.
First there is a need to have someone who is in the know about providers and the illness at hand. They then compile all the health care information necessary to find the right help. Someone to just tell us where we can get a Gerontologist. They simply don’t advertise like Family Practice or Cardiologist. And in many cases the family member wanting to help or caregiver in the mist of helping is not even from this county or state.
A Geriatric Case Manager is the one person who is working specifically for you. Doctors are working for the best interest of your loved one and nurses are carrying through the orders of the physician. Many times today, if our friend or family member is in the hospital, the medical provider is a Hospitalist, not even our friends or family member’s regular provider. If our person is in the hospital they will, in many cases, go to a nursing home for rehabilitation prior to going home. And here is the interesting part, nursing homes and assisted livings are becoming specialized, so a person with a broken hip would not receive rehabilitative care in an assisted living specializing in dementia care. So when leaving the hospital, we must know the care necessary and the correct nursing home to achieve the best care for this current issue.
The education of a Geriatric Case Manager is usually a social work degree, and can be either a bachelor’s or master’s. These specialists spend considerable amount of time learning their community and where to tap into the best care for a particular situation. They are generally paid by the hour and are moderately priced for the local they work from. The fee you pay them will be some of the best money you pay, as once on your payroll as a consultant, you will be able to call and ask a question from anywhere and receive that answer. An example, a caregiver simply quits and you are doing long-distance caregiving from California; instead of worry about who is taking on the job, you can call your Geriatric Case Manager and they will have answers in short order.
None of this is to say, a Geriatric Case Manager is the answer to end all answers; but they are your best professional when swimming against the current. I am sure there are some; however I do not know one, that will not answer an emergency on a weekend or holiday. And they will if you want make visits to the home or residence of care to be your eyes and ears.