Living Columns & Blogs

Centre County’s case managers connect families with resources

Where do you turn when life has been stacked against you? Does it feel like doors are constantly shut and there is no one to manage life’s hardest moments? Are there even any resources available to help? A case manager can help navigate what seems like an endless path and answer these questions.

A case manager provides assessment, planning, facilitation, care coordination and advocacy for their clients. Case managers find the most valuable resources to promote the best outcomes for their clients. They collaborate to seek out services for clients that are experiencing a number of difficulties including homelessness, job loss, eviction, access to health care, financial worries, addictions, mental health or disabilities. Often times, several of these difficulties will be present at the same time and become overwhelming to the client. With the assistance of a case manager, the client can prioritize and tackle each problem or goal.

Centre County is fortunate to have several basic needs case managers throughout the county who specialize in different areas of case management. These case managers can be found at Housing Transitions, Community Help Center, Centre County Women’s Resource Center, Interfaith Human Missions and Centre Volunteers in Medicine. These agencies, as well as many others in the community, work together to provide the best care and services for our clients.

CVIM is a free medical and dental clinic for uninsured individuals. Here at CVIM we provide comprehensive case management as part of our care plan for our patients. The case management department has the capacity to see any individual or family who is in need, regardless of location or income. CVIM has one full-time staff case manager and five volunteers. Our case managers navigate insurance as Certified Application Counselors for the Affordable Care Act, and complete medical assistance applications. They evaluate and assess clients to see that basic needs have been met including: food, housing, clothing, bills, heat, etc. They then collaborate with other agencies to provide referrals and develop a plan with each client. CVIM can also assist income eligible individuals in applying for hearing aid assistance programs.

CVIM is accepting new patients for those who live or work within Centre County, are uninsured and are below 250 percent of the poverty guideline or $61,500 per year for a family of four. For more information, or to schedule an appointment with a case manager, call 231-4043. Through collaboration, Centre County’s network of agencies and case managers provide the missing link that can often help an individual or family reach their best potential.

Kara Krebs is a case manager with Centre Volunteers in Medicine.