Geriatric care means providing health care and support services to the elderly. Geriatric care managers are health care professionals who help families take care of older relatives.
The services provided by geriatric care managers are different from those of a home health aide. In most cases, geriatric care managers help plan and manage care rather than actually deliver it. Geriatric care managers are trained in several areas relating to care management, including social, nursing and gerontology.
Earn a bachelor’s degree in nursing, health administration or social work. People from a wide variety of backgrounds work as geriatric care managers, but the large majority have at least a bachelor’s degree.
Complete a master’s degree in nursing, gerontology, health services, public health or a related program. Although a master’s degree is not required to be a geriatric care manager, many in the field have graduate degrees, especially those who work as private consultants.
Apply for internships or work-study programs for your final year of grad school. Getting six months to a year’s worth of hands-on experience will give you a good idea what a career in geriatric management will be like.
Apply for entry-level geriatric care manager positions at larger hospitals and nursing homes in your area. After you have worked in the field long enough to fully understand what the job entails and become certified, you can consider moving on to start your own geriatric care consulting business.
Become a certified geriatric care manager when you have two years of professional experience. The National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers offers a certification program where professionals who meet educational, experience and case management certification requirements can become NAPGCM certified geriatric care managers.