Teacher, guide, planner, supporter, collaborator. We all know somebody who could be described with one of these words — some more than just one. In the behavioral healthcare field, a case manager can be any or all of these. A primary focus of case managers is to help clients get their lives on track, no matter what the individual goals may be.
At SMA Healthcare, Case Managers help clients stay out of the hospital and jail, off the streets, and in the community. Case Managers help clients to prepare for school, get jobs, participate in meaningful activities, develop peer relationships, and practice good activities of daily living — hygiene, budgeting, nutrition, shopping and menu planning.
Unfortunately, many clients come to SMA with very little, if anything at all, in the way of supports, goals, or plans for the future. They come to SMA Case Management with problems they need help solving, and these are normally not your run-of-the-mill problems to solve, either. Fortunately, at SMA, there are several components of case management tailored to each population, so each client can get the appropriate level of care. Many of these problems that clients deal with affect their quality of life, and include things such as housing, mental health symptoms, employment, education, interpersonal relationships and social supports, and financial issues.
These are things that most individuals have in place, and can sometimes take for granted. SMA clients, however, benefit exponentially from Case Management assistance. This service helps some of the most severely mentally ill clients in the community to get through the tough times and find joy in the day-to-day living. In truth, everyone could benefit from some level of case management at some point in their lives.
Individuals who wish to receive case management normally meet with a case manager only a few times before having a plan in place to help them get back on track. The case manager will sometimes even come to the client’s residence to complete an assessment, which is used to develop a service plan in conjunction with the client’s strengths, abilities, needs, and preferences. As long as the client is in agreement, they sign the plan along with the case manager and their supervisor. Every month, they meet with their case manager to discuss their progress and how any barriers that arise can be overcome. Just like that, they have a support system that will not give up on them and will help them meet every goal on the service plan, no matter how long it takes.
If you or someone you care about could benefit from this valuable service, call SMA’s 24/7 Access Center at 800-539-4228 to see how we can help.