A Geriatric Care Manager (GCM) is a health and human services specialist trained in any number of fields related to elder care including, but not limited to:
- mental health,
- social work, or
America's complex network of elder services continues to grow. The GCM identifies overall concerns of care receivers and caregivers, gains a fuller understanding of which services are most appropriate, and then, provides care assessment and planning. Whether the elder person continues to live in the community or reside in more protected environment (e.g., assisted living, long-term care or skilled-nursing facility), the care manager monitors service performance and advocates for improved quality when necessary.
The GCM may be hired by the elder person or provide services contracted by the client's family, an increasingly common arrangement in today's mobile society where adult children are not as likely to live near their aging parents.
This human development and family studies 12-hour geriatric care management graduate certificate is distinguished from other offerings in the geriatric care field that focus almost exclusively on the medical model. Instead, this program takes a holistic approach to teaching a GCM how to meet the varying needs of America's fastest growing population.
Some students remain in their current positions while earning the certificate to broaden their understanding of assessment and planning considerations beyond their particular area of expertise. Others want to take their "hands on" experience with elders into independent practice. (Independent practitioners can later seek national certification through examination by one of three nationally certifying organizations.)
Other fields in which a geriatric care management graduate certificate would build credentials include:
- social and community service managers
- case management managers
- health care social workers