Preventing Treatment Drift Through Review and Reporting

Posted 8th July 2016

The Immediate Needs Assessment is fundamental to establishing a programme which supports an individual and enhances their recovery. But how long do case managers’ work with these individuals? Months? Years even?

It would be short sighted to believe that the needs identified at the outset would remain the same throughout the life of a case. A client’s needs constantly shift, and are influenced by a myriad of factors. Case Managers need to be aware of this. If they are not, then poor outcomes, unmet needs and spiralling costs are likely.

Only through continuous review of the needs and goals can the case manager ensure that the appropriate support is in place at the appropriate time. This, in turn, will prevent long case durations and therapy drift – enhancing the outcomes for the injured party and those funding rehabilitation.

Interim rehabilitation reports play a key role in the review process. However, there are huge differences in the market as to the frequency of these. Some case managers feel the frequency of interim reports can be too prescriptive, others feel that they should be completed following review visits with the client instead. Reporting timeframes should be agreed initially by all parties under joint instruction as per the rehab code however reporting timeframes should be guided by case manager advice and may vary throughout the life of a case depending on the severity of the injury and rehabilitation progression.

It’s safe to say that a case manager must be attuned to the needs of client that they are supporting, while at the same time considering the agendas of the instructing parties – a task which is frequently easier said, than done!

Andrew Pepler
CMSUK Director & Head of Clinical Operations HCML

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Daniel Hallgarth - 6 years ago

I found this blog to be both interesting and informative. Thank you Andrew

Liz Haunch - 6 years ago

Agree, and as with all things, there is no one right answer. You take your client as you find them, so will need more visits, others not. Regular updating is vital, but fixing a time frame does not always work, you need a good reason to update, whether it is because new vital information has come in 2 weeks after the last update, or because it has been 3 months since the last one, and you want to make sure everyone knows why. We also have very different case loads, a brain injury case is going have very different needs to a person with a fairly simple orthopaedic problem.

Ben Holmes - 6 years ago

Thank you for the post. I am looking forward to seeing the interesting discussions that future posts will generate!