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How Can Geriatric Care Managers Help Family Caregivers?

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Geriatric Case Management is not a new concept, but a relatively new term that emerged as a “profession” over the last 20 years.

Geriatric care management (GCM) provides assistance and advocacy for you and your loved one in finding resources, making decisions, and managing stress.

Let’s dive into what a geriatric care manager is and how they can best help family caregivers.

What Is A Geriatric Care Manager?

Geriatric Care Managers provide a “one-stop shop” for family caregivers looking for assistance in providing efficient care for their loved one. 

A Geriatric Care Manager is usually a licensed nurse or social worker who specializes in geriatrics and acts as a sort of "professional relative" who helps you and your family navigate the caregiving process and helps create an action plan to meet your loved one’s needs. Geriatric Care Managers find ways to meet your loved one’s long-term care needs while offering solutions to protect your well-being as a caregiver.

While a geriatric care manager may be a social worker, nurse, gerontologist, counselor, or other human services professional;  geriatric care managers may also include members of the Aging Life Care Association (ALCA) or other professional, accredited organizations. 

Most of these professionals must meet strict educational criteria, have experience in the field, and meet certification requirements. In addition, they’ll need to adhere to a strict Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice that is outlined by their accreditation.

How Can Geriatric Care Managers Help Family Caregivers?

Geriatric Care Managers are trained aging life care professionals who provide comprehensive care management services and can help source the right resources to make your daily life as a family caregiver easier. 

GCMs will work with you to form a long-term care plan for senior care. They will also find the services you need by completing a comprehensive assessment and outlining your specific caregiving needs and goals.

Most geriatric case managers act as care coordinators and provide advocacy, facilitate communications, and shoulder most of the responsibilities for their clients or responsible agent.

Moreover, Geriatric Care Managers can specifically assist with the following but are not limited to:

  • Conduct initial assessments with you and family members to develop a care plan for you or for your loved one
  • Assist in a smooth transition between home and a retirement complex, assisted living center, or nursing home
  • Serve as an objective mediator for family members and can lead discussions regarding complex issues related to aging
  • Act as a liaison to families and local resources in or out of town, by providing regular communication and alerting families to any concerns
  • Offer assistance with decisions about living arrangements and placement alternatives
  • Make referrals to eldercare professionals specializing in the financial, medical, or legal issues facing seniors and their families
  • Provide strategies for coping with dementia/other age-related illnesses and ensure a high quality of life
  • Monitor outside contractors such as home care services to ensure full-time or part-time providers are meeting the client’s care needs 
  • Can help to save time and financial resources 
  • Provide peace of mind

 

Interested In Working With A Geriatric Care Manager?

Caring for a loved one can feel like a full-time job. 

Enlisting the help of a Geriatric Care Manager can help ease your stress as a caregiver, help you with coordinating a care team and plan, as well as offer beneficial solutions for you and your loved one’s needs.

Many certified Geriatric Care Managers belong to the following organizations, so you can trust that the professional will be to be well trained, adhere to high standards, and abide by a strict code of ethics:

Christina Drumm-Boyd

Christina Drumm-Boyd is a Certified Senior Advisor with 20+ years of experience in Geriatric Care Management. She focuses on the senior housing industry, especially assisted living, nursing, and specialty memory care. She is also an Accredited Agent with the U.S. Veterans Administration, licensed to represent claims before the Office of General Council, and a licensed insurance agent in life, health, and annuity products for the state of Virginia.

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