Depending on where an individual is academically and professionally, he or she can apply to a certificate or graduate certificate program in geriatric case management. Although both programs address physical and mental issues related to aging, certificate programs are intended for those with very little or no previous education, while graduate certificate programs are intended for working professionals with some level of formal education. They consist of coursework as well as hands-on learning experiences. A professional certification might be available to students who complete their studies and pass a skills examination.
- Program Levels in Geriatric Case Managment: Certificate, Associate's Degree, Bachelor's Degree, Master's Degree
- Prerequisites: There are no prerequisites for a certificate program. \Associate and Bachelor's programs require a high school diploma or equivalent as well as acceptable college entrance exam scores. Master's Degree programs require a bachelor's degree.
- Program Length: Varies by degree. Certificates may take under a year to complete. Associate's degrees can usually be completed in two years. Bachelor's degrees require four years of coursework, and Master's Degrees can usual be completed in two to three years.
- Other Requirements: State or national certification
Certificate Programs in Geriatric Case Management
Geriatric case management involves focusing on essential mental, physical, psychological and social issues related to senior citizens. Students interested in acquiring a basic education and skill set in geriatric case management might consider a certificate program. Programs look at a variety of issues facing the elderly, such as physical and mental changes, family dynamics, social support, special medical needs and financial issues. Programs deliver necessary information through informative lectures and practical application in a supervised professional environment.
Geriatric case management certificate programs blend structured lecture coursework with some practical hands-on experience to provide a well-rounded educational experience. Upon completion, students may be eligible to seek national certification as an additional professional, but not mandatory, credential. Courses typically cover the following subjects:
- Introduction to geriatric case management
- Aging and physical changes
- Family dynamics and marriage
- Introduction to social work
- Dealing with dementia and other mental issues of the elderly
Graduate Certificates in Geriatric Case Management Overview
Graduate certificates in geriatric case management are intended to provide additional education and skills to working professionals. Though not mandatory, the certificate may provide additional professional achievement. Certificate programs address the complex and unique issues of aging, such as self-esteem, dementia, end-of-life planning and physical restrictions. Informative lectures and practical application of learned principles and theories are at the heart of the certificate program.
Certificate programs offer focused and specialized education in general geriatric case management intended for professional application. Some course topics include:
- Senior citizens and communication
- Ethical and legal issues in geriatric case management
- Senior citizens and community involvement
- Contemporary issues in geriatric care giving
- Issues with institutional and home care
Popular Career Options
Certificate programs provide additional education applicable to individuals pursuing career paths in a number of fields, such as social work, medicine and human services. Some possible career paths encompassing geriatric case management include:
- Nurse practitioner
- Social worker
- Home health aide
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
According to a June 2015 report by PayScale.com, most geriatric case managers earned between $29,967 and $73,352 annually, with the median salary being $47,125. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projected a 23% growth in employment for social and human services assistants, a group that included geriatric case managers, from 2012-2022 (www.bls.gov). This projected job growth was much faster than the average for all occupations.
Students are encouraged to seek formal education at the associate's or bachelor's degree level. College degrees typically lead to increased employment opportunity. Students completing an educational certificate in geriatric case management might be interested in undergraduate programs in social work, human services or sociology.
Although not required for employment, individuals may become a Certified Geriatric Case Manager from the National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers, and this certification may be a beneficial professional credential (www.caremanager.org). Individuals seeking certification must have a formal educational degree, previous work experience and pass a nationally standardized certification examination.