#6 – What does a geriatric care manager do?

Click here to see the prior item in this series:  How do I know my strengths and set limits?

#6  – What does a geriatric care manager do?  How can I find one in the Chapel Hill – Durham area? A friend of mine thought that having a professional “on the scene” to help my dad would take some of the pressure off me.

Professional care managers are usually licensed nurses or social workers who specialize in geriatrics. Some families hire a geriatric care manager to evaluate and assess a parent’s needs and to coordinate care through community resources.  The cost of an initial evaluation varies and may be expensive, but depending on your family circumstances, geriatric care managers might offer a useful service. They are a sort of “professional relative” to help you and your family to identify needs and how to meet them.  These professionals can also help by leading family discussions about sensitive subjects. For example, Alice’s father might be more willing to take advice from someone outside the family.

When interviewing a geriatric care manager, you might want to ask:

  • Are you a licensed geriatric care manager?
  • Are you a member of the National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers?
  • How long have you been providing care management services?
  • Are you available for emergencies around the clock?
  • Does your company also provide home care services?
  • How will you communicate information to me?
  • What are your fees? Will you provide information on fees in writing prior to starting services?
  • Can you provide references?

The National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers can help you find a care manager near your family member’s community. You can also call or write the Eldercare Locator for recommendations.  In some cases, support groups for diseases related to aging may be able to recommend geriatric care managers who have assisted other families.

Click here to see the next item in this series:  Is organizing paperwork a good way to be helpful?

Acorn wishes to acknowledge the National Institute on Aging for this valuable content.

 

Within Acorn’s service area of Chapel Hill, Durham and surrounding areas in North Carolina (Hillsborough, Pittsboro, Morrisville, Cary, and Apex) the following resources may be especially helpful:

  • Orange County Department on Aging, 2551 Homestead Road, Chapel Hill, North Carolina 27516, (919) 968-2070
  • Durham Center for Senior Life, 406 Rigsbee Avenue – Suite 202, Durham, North Carolina   27701, (919) 688-8247
  • Chatham County Council on Aging, 365 North Carolina 87, Pittsboro, North Carolina   27312, (919) 542-4512
  • Triangle J Area Agency on Aging, 4307 Emperor Boulevard
- Suite 110, Durham, NC 27703, 919-558-2711
  • Resources for Seniors (Wake County), 1110 Navaho Dr.  – Suite 400, Raleigh, NC 27609, 919-872-7933
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