The New Mexico Rio Grande Chapter of the CaseManagement Society of America (CMSA) held their annual conference this last week in Albuquerque. The theme of this year’s conference; “The Tricks and Treats of Case Management = Quality Outcomes.”

Presentations covered an array of topics from a look at case management and industry resources to more emotional talks of dealing with grief, special needs families, needs of the American Indian/Pueblo population, hospice and palliative care.

Dr. Marcello Mavigila spoke about viewing recovery beyond the medical model and that each patient’s recovery is different and personal, and has a different set of goals. ┬áThese goals involve qualitative aspects of building hope, the need for supportive relationships, and personal empowerment. He challenged the fact that medicine uses scales to measure recovery, but those can’t answer the questions about the quality of life. ┬áThat is where the role of a case manager comes in.

Start to finish in the conference, the theme reiterated; an informed and educated case manager, through CEUs and networking with available resources in the community, is crucial to quality results in a patient’s treatment. Organizing and communicating the patient’s care needs with everyone involved, whether it be transportation for care, in-home test/medical procedures, insurance, support groups, doctors/nurses; all partners need to work together for a successful treatment.

The conference was useful in the educating case managers of the different facets of issues involved in care, and the resources available to them as they met their patients plan hopefully filling in the gaps to provide better care. This collaboration leads to living a better life.