Our Membership Is the Lifeblood of CMSA
BY MARY MCLAUGHLIN-DAVIS, DNP, ACNS-BC, NEA-BC, CCM
While traveling this week, I checked my emails and was delighted and surprised to receive a message from a case manager colleague and friend I worked with in Pennsylvania 26 years ago. Debbe and her close-knit group of case managers, all working for different employers, took me under their wing as a new resident of their city and educated me on the value of case management and what is important to the patients and clients we serve.
She reached out to me and my healthcare system seeking assistance for her client. We were able to connect through our CMSA membership. This experience, along with so many others over the years, prompts me to pause and reflect on the value of belonging to the Case Management Society of America. Our professional organization has provided the education, the tools and the standards necessary to develop the professional profile of case managers across the continuum of care. CMSA, as a membership body, has developed countless case managers across the country and across the world, and subsequently has improved the lives of our patients and our clients.
CMSA is unique because of our members. The talent and experience of case managers has kept CMSA a vital and productive organization. We are continuously developing evidence-based case management practices, and we are sharing them with our case management community. The CMSA standards of practice are the bedrock of our organization, kept current with timely updates and edits.
The CMSA Case Management Model Act provides a blueprint for case management programs at the local, state and national government levels, as well as for private healthcare systems and plans.
Our CMSA membership endorses a strong public policy commitment with an active and viable committee. The highlight of our public policy activities is the CMSA Hill Day and the opportunity to speak with our elected officials in Washington, D.C.
We have many prolific writers, and among them are our own executive director, Kathleen Fraser, along with her colleagues Rebecca Perez and Dr. Corine Latour. These CMSA authors have written CMSA’s Integrated Case Management: a Manual for Case Managers by Case Managers. The importance of integrated medical and behavioral health case management cannot be overemphasized as we lead the way for population health in a value-based model.
Our veterans and our active duty military deserve our undying respect and assistance as they transition into our medical communities. CMSA is committed to all case managers who assist our active duty and veteran soldiers, sailors and airmen. We have sponsored and supported the CMSA Military Day for the past two years. And we are fortunate to have Derenda Lovelace from the Veterans Administration and Cornel Melanie Prince from the United States Air Force on our CMSA National Board of Directors. Derenda and Melanie have been instrumental in planning and working at our military pre-conference workshops.
CMSA has a deep bench of expert case managers in the former presidents’ panel. Over the past two years, this prestigious group has shared their best practices and their wisdom through CMSA Today and at the national conference. Look for this opportunity to learn from the best at this year’s conference.
Our membership is the lifeblood of CMSA. It is so much larger than any one of us, but as a group we are a strong force, and we are the advocates sorely needed by our patients and our clients.
It is with deep appreciation to all of you that I pass the gavel of CMSA President to my colleague Jose Alejandro, PhD, RN-BC, MBA, CCM, ACM, FACHE, FAAN. Dr. Alejandro is the director of case management at the University of California Irvine Medical Center and nursing professor at South University. Jose previously served two terms as CMSA Treasurer and Chapter President Council Representative. In addition, Dr. Alejandro served our country in the U.S. Army Reserve for 27 years, with the rank of major. Clearly, we are in good hands with a strong and experienced leader.
In addition, I would like to thank the Board of Directors for the 2016-2018 term of my presidency: Mary Beth Newman, Betty Overbey, Cathy Campbell, Deborah Gutteridge, Janet Coulter, Jody Luttrell, Laura Ostrowsky, Margie Chu, Rebecca Cirri, Ellen Fink-Samnick, Andrea Norton, Rita Richter, Jose Santoro and Patricia Noonan. It is only through the hard work and dedication of committed volunteers at the national and chapter levels that we have been successful in continuing our mission. We also could not complete our work and meet our deadlines without the dedicated team at Fraser Imagineers.
It has been my profound honor to serve the membership of CMSA over these past two years. I would not have thought that possible twenty-six years ago as a new case manager. Thank you again for allowing me to serve you and our beloved organization, CMSA.
Mary McLaughlin-Davis, DNP, ACNS-BC, NEA-BC, CCM
President, CMSA 2016-2018
Dr. McLaughlin-Davis is the president of CMSA. She has been a certified case manager since 1993; she is a clinical nurse specialist for adult health and the senior director for care management for Cleveland Clinic, Avon Hospital.
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