How to Become a Geriatric Care Manager


Career Path Guide

If you want to become a geriatric care manager, you first need to determine if this career path is a good fit for your skills, interests and personality traits. If the following description sounds like you, then you’re probably well suited for this line of work:


• You have an interest in ensuring that the elderly maintain a high quality of life

• You are interested in planning and managing healthcare and support services for the elderly

• You enjoy coordinating the provision of service providers and monitoring their performance

• You are ethical, accountable and responsible

• You are able to gain an understanding of a client’s strengths, needs, concerns and preferences

• You have an understanding of the impact the aging process has on the individual, the family, the community, and the health care system


Below we've outlined what you'll need to begin a career as a geriatric care manager. We've also included helpful occupational information, such as job description, job duties, salary expectations, a list of possible employers and much more!



What is a Geriatric Care Manager?

A Geriatric care manager is a health services specialist trained in one or more fields related to the care of elders. These fields may include, but are not limited to nursing, psychology, rehabilitation, gerontology or social work. Geriatric care managers are typically more concerned with planning and managing healthcare and support services in these areas, rather than actually delivering them. 



Education Needed to Become a Geriatric Care Manager

In order to become a geriatric care manager, you need at least an associate’s degree in a field related to care management. Such fields may include:


• Nursing

• Social work

• Psychology

• Care management

• Human ecology

• Health administration


Many enter the field by first earning a bachelor’s degree in one of the above-mentioned fields, and then earn a graduate certificate in care management. Although a master's degree is not required to become a geriatric care manager, many in the field have graduate degrees, especially those who work as private consultants. 





More About This Profession: General Job Description

A geriatric care manager is responsible for assuring the provision of quality care for the elderly, and ensuring their quality of life is maintained at the highest level possible.


To do this, geriatric care managers must gain a complete understanding of which health and human services are most appropriate for the needs of elderly clients, their families and other caregivers. Once they have determined which services are appropriate, they must coordinate and monitor the provision of these services, and lobby for improvements when appropriate. 



Typical Job Duties & Responsibilities

• Conduct care planning assessments in order to identify problems and determine eligibility for services

• Establish a comprehensive plan of care and goals related to that plan

• Coordinate the services of government agencies, insurance companies and home health care agencies

• Oversee the provision of counseling, psychological support and advocacy for elders and their families

• Offer assistance and guidance related to identifying alternative housing options

• Facilitate housing transitions for elders and their families

• Refer elders and their families to professionals who can assist with financial and legal concerns

• Screen and arrange in-home help and additional health and mental health services

• Perform ongoing monitoring and reassessment of client status and satisfaction with service



Characteristics Needed to Be Successful

In order to enjoy performing the duties of a geriatric care manager, you need to have certain personality traits. Taking enjoyment from your duties as a geriatric care manager is important, as it helps you maintain a positive attitude towards your work, which usually leads to having a long and successful career.


• Enjoy working with older adults

• A keen interest in ensuring older adults maintain the best possible quality of life

• A willingness to advocate on behalf of elderly clients

• Enjoy organizing and interpreting information

• Ethical, accountable and responsible

• Patience and empathy when working with caregivers and care receivers

• Enjoy developing creative solutions to problems

• Enjoy monitoring the performance of service providers

• Strong business acumen with a high level of initiative 



Skills Needed to Become a Geriatric Care Manager

In order to be effective in a geriatric care manager role, and perform your job duties with competence, you need to posses a certain set of skills, including:


• Able to assess and identify client's strengths, needs, concerns and preferences

• Able to establish a comprehensive plan of care and goals related to that plan

• Able to coordinate healthcare and human services

• Able to negotiate and mediate with service providers

• Able to exercise sound professional judgment based on ethical standards and expectations in the field

• Skilled in budget development and management

• Able to build and maintain relationships with a diverse population 

• An understanding of the impact the aging process has on the individual, the family, the community, and the health care system





Certification Requirements

Although it is not currently a regulated industry standard, some employers may require that you have certification as a geriatric care manager in order to work for them. Having certification as a geriatric care manager is highly recommended, as it will make you more employable and trustworthy by showing you are competent in areas such as:


• Aging issues

• Community services

• Chronic disease management

• Benefit and financing options

• Legal and ethical concerns

• Special needs and advocacy

• Family and individual support


Professional certification is available through such organizations as the National Academy of Certified Care Managers (NACCM). Many certifying organizations require candidates to have at least an associate’s degree in a field related to care management, as well as at least two or three years of supervised experience. 



Typical Salary Level

The salary level of geriatric care managers can vary depending on factors such as:


• Their level of education

• Their level of experience and aptitude

• The region in which they work

• The size and type of their employer


There is no salary information available from reliable sources for the career Geriatric Care Manager. We can however get a good idea of their approximate level of earnings by looking at the salary level of workers in closely related occupations.


Geriatric Care Manager Salary - United States: According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, American workers in the "Medical and Health Services Managers" occupational group earn a median salary of $99,730 per year (May, 2018 figures).


Salary - Canada: According to the 2018 Alberta Wage and Salary Survey, Albertans working in the "Health Services Administrator" occupational group earn an average salary of $114,837 per year. And according to the Province of British Columbia (WorkBC), the annual provincial median salary of "Managers in health care" is $85,717.



Who Employs Geriatric Care Managers?

Geriatric care managers may be employed on a part-time, full-time or contractual basis, typically by the following types of employers:


• Private practice (Geriatric care management business)

• Long Term Care Facilities

• Home Health Care

• Public Service Agencies

• Larger hospitals

• Nursing homes

• Government

• Non-profit organizations (such as the Alzheimer’s Association)



Current Job Postings

Our job board below has "geriatric care manager" and related postings in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia, when available:




Similar Occupations in Our Database

Listed below are careers in our database that are similar in nature to "geriatric care manager", as they may involve many of the same skills, competencies and responsibilities.


Child Life Specialist

Elder Care Worker

Medical Social Worker

Occupational Therapist



References for This Career Guide

Please consult the references below to find more information on the various aspects of a career as a geriatric care manager.


Wages & Salaries in Alberta:Senior managers - health, education, social and community services and membership organizations.” (n.d.). ALIS website - Alberta Learning Information Service. Retrieved December 1, 2019.

Management:Medical and Health Services Managers.” (September 4, 2019). Occupational Outlook Handbook - United States Bureau of Labor Statistics website. Retrieved December 1, 2019.

Distance Education:Geriatric Care Management.” (March 16, 2018.) University of Florida Social & Behavioral Science website. Retrieved December 1, 2019.



Scholarships for Becoming a Geriatric Care Manager

Scholarships listed for majors that are relevant to this profession can be found on our All Scholarships by Major page, by finding the pages that correspond to the majors listed on our "Relevant Fields of Study" section below. Any scholarships found within those pages will be suitable.


Success Tip: Be sure to apply for any scholarships that you even barely qualify for, as there are millions of dollars of scholarships that go unused every year due to a lack of applicants!



Relevant Fields of Study

Studying one of the university majors listed below can serve as an excellent educational foundation for this career:


Top Banner Image: 
Top Banner Image Title: 
Geriatric Care Manager