Fall 2014
Supervision in Care Management: Managing Quality

Supervision Requirements for Certification

About the Authors

Cheryl M. Whitman, BSN, MS, CMC
Ms. Whitman earned a bachelors of science in nursing from D’Youville College in Buffalo, NY and a master’s of science degree from the University of CT, School of Nursing.  She has 40+ years of experience in a variety of nursing settings including hospitals and home care; has worked as a clinical care manager, supervisor and manager at a non-profit care management organization; and has 15 years experience as a private geriatric care manager.

She is a founding member of the National Academy of Certified Care Managers (NACCM).  She was a leader in the development of the certification process, has participated in item writing, exam construction and was the very first person to sit for the CMC examination.  She has served on the board of directors since 1995 and was the Executive Director until October 31, 2014.  


Monika White, PhD, MSW
An experienced practitioner, educator, researcher, author, lecturer and administrator, she has worked in both public and private sectors.  For nearly 40 years, her career has focused on coordinating health, mental health and community-based service delivery systems for older adults and their families. A leading authority on care management, eldercare services, caregiving, volunteer programs and healthy aging, she speaks and consults nationally and internationally. Retired President/CEO of Center for Healthy Aging in Santa Monica, CA, she  is currently an Adjunct Associate Professor,  USC Graduate School of Social Work and the Leonard Davis School of Gerontology.  She is a past NAPGCM President, an Adele Elkind Award recipient and serves on the New Journal of Geriatric Care Management Editorial Board.

Monika White, MSW, PHD and Cheryl Whitman, BSN, MSN, CMC

Supervision is one of many tools professionals have to assure the quality of service delivery. It is particularly important in case/care management because of the complex nature of consumer and service delivery systems and the independent nature of the case/care manager role. Supervision is an important aspect of case/care management credentialing, both to qualify to take an exam and to renew certification. To qualify for membership at the “Certified Care Manager” category, certification is mandatory.  NAPGCM recognizes certifications from three bodies and each of them requires some form of supervision:

  • Commission for Case Manager Certification (CCMC). Certified Case Manager (CCM). A license or other certification is required to take the exam and 12 months of acceptable, full-time case management employment supervised by a CCM.  The CCMC defines supervision as “the systematic and periodic evaluation of the quality of the delivery of the applicant’s case/care management services.” Working as a case/care management supervisor for 12 months is another acceptable criteria for certification.  A third employment category is 24 months of acceptable case/care management experience that requires supervision but not necessary by a CCM.
  • National Association of Social Workers (NASW). Certified Social Work Case Manager (C-SWCM).  NASW offers 2 certifications.  Eligibility for the C-SWCM includes one year (1,500 hours) post-BSW paid, supervised work experience as a case manager.  More specifically, supervision must be one hour for every 15 hours direct client-level case management tasks and the supervisor must be by a BSW with five years’ experience or an MSW with two years’ experience.  The C-ASWCM is an advanced credential for MSW case/care managers and requires documentation of at least two years (equivalent of 3,000 hours) of paid, supervised, post-MSW case management experience.
  • National Academy of Certified Care Managers (NACCM). Care Manager Certified (CMC).   NACCM defines supervision as “individual, group or peer evaluation of the applicant’s performance of the core care management tasks including the quality and efficacy.”  For new applicants, each year of required care management experience must include 50 hours of supervision. Supervision is a requirement to maintain the CMC’s certification.

Although NACCM accepts a broad range of who can serve as consultant or supervisor, a CMC is preferred. Documentation of the methods utilized and the content evaluated is required. Supervision can be obtained with professional colleagues (as in the case of solo practitioners); supervisors/managers; mentors; or other certified case/care managers.

Based on NACCM experience, supervision usually includes evaluation of clinical skills and core case/care management functions; evaluation of clinical documentation by case/care manager; case presentations with other care managers; discussion of current practice issues, ethical dilemmas, and case/care management interventions.  Measures of quality are also useful.

Methods of supervision range from: one-on-one meetings; observation of case/care manager interactions with clients in the field and on the phone; record reviews; agency or company specific performance appraisals; and client satisfaction surveys.

Clearly each certification has its own eligibility criteria and should be looked at carefully to assure a fit.  Additional information and applications for each certification are available on-line: CCMC (www.ccmcertification.org); NASW (www.socialworkers.org); and NACCM
(www.naccm.net).  Supervision is an essential component of the case/care management certification process for a new or renewing applicant, and it is important in achieving and maintaining quality practice.


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