i) Case managers  Next j)

i) Case managers

Case managers also need to know a key to working with a person with an ABI is building a relationship with them. Working with people with acquired brain injury can be difficult.

Case managers also have to work with the person with the ABI and their family members in the grief process.

Case managers also have to change how they do case management to make it appropriate to working with people with ABI. They are also often involved in other services changing their work practices in order to provide a better service for people with ABI.

Changing one's own work practices and processes and practices of one's own and other organisations can be challenging.

Case managers need self-understanding about handling their own stress and what pushes their buttons.

Rules of thumb

1. Take time to get to know the person and their uniqueness.
2. Understand the connections between the injury, effect on their brain and effect on their behaviour.
3. You don't have to take behaviours personally.
4. Understand what pushes your buttons and develop strategies for dealing with this.
5. Understand your role with the person with ABI.
6. Understand how case management has to be different with people with ABI.
7. Identify your professional support network.

One case manager said:

What's the big thing that you have learned in the last six months in changing to case manager?

The biggest thing is to help maintain my stress levels and to be patient. To be more supportive to the other service coordination managers, the support workers and work as a team, because it is a big effort. You have got to rely on each other.

And the stress comes from?

Dealing with different clients with different issues. So it is that whole complexity around supporting a client, you get a whole lot of issues, especially when you have got more than one client who are having issues at any one time. So it is being able to manage your time, prioritise, and being able to de-brief with your team, it helps a lot too as well.

 

 

ii) Clip 17 : Case Manager : Experience Of Case Management (6 min)

A case manager talking about the experience of what it is like being a case manager.

     

iii) Clip 18 : Case Manager : Role As Case Manager (2 min)

A case manager describing her role as a case manager.

     

iv) Clip 10 : Case Manager : Learnt in 6 Months (1 min 20 sec)

A case manager talking about what they have learnt about case managing people with ABI.

     

v) Questions

Answer the following questions:

You are an experienced case manager. You are new to case managing ABI clients.

What are some of the emotional and relationship issues you will need to consider in relation to the client and their family and friends?

What are some of the emotional and relationship issues you will need to consider for yourself?

Check your answers here: What are some of the emotional and relationship issues
you will need to consider in relation to the client and their family and friends?


1. A person with an acquired brain injury has had a life before the injury. Unless they are very young when they had the injury they will remember the life they had. They will have experienced loss and grief.

2. The acquired brain injury may have affected their

  • thinking skills - cognitive
  • communication/language
  • physical/sensory
  • emotional/behavioural/personality.

3. These can impact on their emotions - e.g. they may have a period of depression, they may have some personality change.

4. These emotional changes caused by the brain injury are not mental illness.

5. In addition to experiencing these changes the person with the ABI has to respond to and come to terms with their new life situation.

6. They also have to deal with their family members and friends coming to terms with the changes in them.

7. Friends often can't understand the changed nature of the person that they used to know and so friends fall away (even though their friendship is still very important to the person with the ABI).

Check your answers here: What are some of the emotional and relationship issues
you will need to consider for yourself?


1. It can be hard to get to know people with ABI - I need to give myself the time I need to do this.

2. Sometimes people with ABI can be abusive or aggressive or difficult to relate to in other ways. I need to not take this personally.

3. Gains with ABI clients can be slow in coming - I need to make sure I don't give up to soon. Or get caught in the disillusionment process.

4. Service providers are often not flexible enough for the needs of people with ABI. I will need to advocate on the behalf of people with ABI for services to be more flexible, change their policies to make them more appropriate. I may need to be ready for some fights.