What is a Professional Care Manager?

A Professional Geriatric Care Manager is an expert, such as a social worker, counselor, gerontologist or nurse who:

  • Has a specialized body of knowledge and experience related to aging and care issues
  • Assists older adults and persons with disabilities in addressing issues related to their health, psychological, function and legal/financial status.
  • Assesses needs and coordinates ongoing care
  • Identifies numerous ancillary services that help maintain independence
  • Monitors and evaluated ongoing care needs and current status
  • Monitors medical treatment compliance issues
  • Determines best living situation for individual and older couples
  • Identifies legal and financial gaps and refers to appropriate professionals
  • Provides ongoing supervision & maintains communication link to limit out-of-town caregivers’ need for frequent and costly visits.
  • Serves as an experienced guide and resource for families of older adults and others with chronic needs.

How do you know that an individual or family needs a Professional Geriatric Care Manager?

Your patient and their family may need a Professional Geriatric Care Manager if:

  • A person has limited or no family support
  • Family newly involved and needs direction about available services
  • A person has multiple medical or psychological issues
  • The individual is unable to live safely in his/her current environment
  • Family is either “burned out” or confused about care solutions
  • Family has limited time and/or expertise in dealing with loved ones’ chronic care needs.
  • Family is at odds regarding care decisions
  • Individual appears to require advocacy related to care providers
  • Individual is confused about their own financial and/or legal situation
  • Family needs education and/or direction in dealing with behaviors associated with dementia

Danger signals indicating a need for attention and possible intervention:

One or more unusual behaviors that appear to indicate that an older person is having some difficulties functioning means it is time for a loved one to step in and get expert help.

  • Frequent falls or unexplained bruises
  • Weight loss of 10 lbs. or more in a 12-month period
  • Medication mistakes/overdose
  • Bizarre or deviant behavior
  • Getting lost while driving or walking
  • Extreme suspiciousness
  • Unpaid bills or uncashed checks
  • Confusion or increased forgetfulness
  • New balance or mobility problems and refusing to use cane or walker
  • Health complaints / symptoms, but refuses to see the doctor
  • One spouse overwhelmed or in poor health caring for a dependent spouse