Certified Care Manager Certification and Career

Certified care managers compassionately work with elderly and disabled patients needing guidance as they deal with a health concern. Read on to find out more about becoming a certified care manager. Schools offering Health Care Administration degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What You Need to Know

Certified care managers interact with patients, their families, physicians and other health care personnel to create a plan to manage patients' health. They may work at a hospital, clinic or long-term care facility. Education in a care management field and experience is necessary in order to become certified.

Degree Options Associate's, bachelor's, or master's in care management field
Median Salary (2018)* $66,595 annually
Certification Available through the National Academy of Certified Care Managers (NACCM)

Source: *PayScale.com

What Skills Do I Need to Be Certified Care Manager?

As a certified care manager, you coordinate resources (such as submitting paperwork and setting appointments) to help patients adhere to their plans, and then you follow up to address successes and challenges. Since you interact on a regular basis with patients, families and other health care professionals, it is important that you possess strong communication skills and a compassionate nature. In addition, you need to be able to identify a problem and come up with a plan of action to overcome it. Related titles include service coordinator, case manager, geriatric care manager or care coordinator.

What Does a Career as a Certified Care Manager Look Like?

Certified care managers work with patients to provide a variety of services that assist them with their healthcare needs. This might include:

  • Developing strategies to manage chronic health conditions
  • Working with patients to set personal health goals
  • Helping patients and their families understand the treatment plan for their diagnosis
  • Locating resources available in patients' communities
  • Assisting patients with home care and home nursing

According to PayScale.com, the median income for patient care managers as of July 2018 was $66,595. Salary for care managers in this field ranged from $38,235-$100,800.

What Degree Programs Prepare Me for a Career as a Certified Care Manager?

You can prepare for a career as a certified care manager with an associate's, bachelor's or a master's degree in a field related to care management, such as:

  • Social work
  • Gerontology
  • Nursing
  • Counseling
  • Human services
  • Public health

You may also earn a bachelor's degree in another field along with a university-based certificate in care management.

What Coursework Prepares Me for a Career as a Certified Care Manager?

If you plan to work with aging populations, coursework in gerontology should give you the knowledge to solve problems related to getting older. Coursework in social work or counseling can teach you techniques on assessment and plan management. Psychology training can help you gain a perspective on the mental health of someone needing care management. You may also benefit from including coursework related to death and dying in your studies.

How Do I Become Certified?

The National Academy of Certified Care Managers offers certification to applicants who meet eligibility guidelines in terms of education and work experience. If you have a graduate degree in a care management field, you need one year of care management work experience in order to take the certification exam. If you have a bachelor's degree in care management or have completed a certificate program after earning an unrelated degree, you need two years of management experience. If you have an associate's degree in a related field or have completed a registered nursing program, you need two years of management experience in addition to one year of clinical work experience. All other applicants will need a degree, three years of management experience and one year of clinical experience.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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