Help patients recover from physical illnesses, injuries, or surgeries.
A Clinical Case Manager is often the first point of contact for a person in crisis. While their friends are out to dinner on a Saturday night, Clinical Case Managers are usually on call. But, if you’re a Clinical Case Manager, you don’t mind, because when you’re called to a domestic dispute or a child endangerment threat, you hold the power to change lives.
Depending on where you work, you often specialize in one area, such as eating disorders or drug rehabilitation. Common employers are public mental health facilities, governmental programs, rehabilitation centers, and crisis units.
Regardless of where you work, though, your duty is to evaluate your patient’s needs. You make assessments that help identify the problem. Is there a drug or alcohol addiction? Is there physical, mental, or verbal abuse in the house? Does the patient need medication for a physical or mental illness?
Once you’ve identified the problem, you start working towards a solution. When the patient is hospitalized, you monitor his or her progress, direct group, family, and individual counseling sessions, and keep careful records of all conversations, medications, and behaviors. Often, new issues come up during treatment, such as an eating disorder or the discovery of childhood abuse. So you constantly flex your listening muscles and alter the treatment plan accordingly.
It’s also your job to design a follow-up plan so the patient has goals for the future. This might include housing, legal, or job referrals, long-term counseling, or other outpatient services.