The Case Management Department began as a small team providing services to just a few people living in Dakota County during the first few months of 2020. Since those early days, the department has welcomed several additional compassionate professionals to the team who are currently proud to support the service coordination for over 90 persons served. Life Fountain looks to the future for growth not just in the size of its team of dedicated professionals, but also to the expansion of Case Management services to assist individuals in other service areas or counties.
Life Fountain currently provides the service of Case Management for individuals who qualify to receive the service through their county of residence or waiver program. Case Managers are integral to the success of long-term care plans for persons with disabilities, as they provide ongoing, continuous support for individuals in need of the service. According to the Case Management Society of America, Case Management is defined as “… a collaborative process of assessment, planning, facilitation, care coordination, evaluation and advocacy for options and services to meet an individual’s and family’s comprehensive health needs through communication and available resources to promote patient safety, quality of care, and cost-effective outcomes.”
The dedicated team of professionals at Life Fountain is contracted to provide Case Management services authorized by the county, very much like other types of services offered (PCA for example). When a person is assessed for services by their county’s Social Services team and found eligible for Case Management, the case can be assigned or referred to the Case Management Department at Life Fountain who then provides services to coordinate needed support based on the individual’s disability needs assessment. Contracting Case Management services to service providers in the community eases the burden on the county to provide the service coordination necessary for a growing number of individuals to ensure that people with disabilities have their needs met.
A common question asked about ‘Contracted’ Case Management is “Do I get the same level of care or service as I would if I had a county Case Manager.” Case Managers at Life Fountain can perform the same duties and functions as a Case Manager that works directly for a county through which a person receives services and supports. The Case Management Department at Life Fountain has regular, direct communication with Social Service personnel at the county-level for support and to ensure that services are being delivered according to applicable Federal, State, and County guidelines. In addition, Case Managers at Life Fountain participate in training and educational opportunities provided by the company to further promote continued excellence in providing services to a diverse population of persons needing disability services.
Life Fountain is currently contracted with Dakota County to provide the following types of Case Management services: Non-waiver Developmental Disability (Rule 185 and Vulnerable Adult/Developmental Disability), Developmental Disability Waiver (DD Waiver), and Community Access for Disability Waiver (CADI Waiver). As Life Fountain looks toward forward progress, there are opportunities to increase the organization’s service delivery within the Twin Cities area by growing the number of partner counties and adding additional waiver programs which could include: Alternative Care/Elderly Waiver (AC/EW), Brain Injury (BI) Waiver, and Community Alternative Care (CAC) Waiver.
It is an exciting time of growth with the new department, and we look forward to continuing to flourish in the coming years as we adjust to meet the needs of the greater community. As the department evolves, our case managers are as dedicated as ever in maintaining the highest level of service and compassion be delivered to each individual served, so we know our neighbors can find comfort in disability services when they need them.