The Concept of Continuum of Care

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The Concept of Continuum of Care Essay

The concept of continuum of care is effectively used in case management. The term “continuum of care” (COC) can be defined as “an integrated system of care composed of services and integrating mechanisms that manages clients through a comprehensive array of health, mental health and social services over time and across care settings” (Siegler et al., 2007, p. 158). In case management, this concept of continuum care is reflected in coordinated care services provided by case managers in different health care settings.The Concept of Continuum of Care Essay Nurse case managers serve in various functions and roles in continuum of care. Some specific examples of these functions include providing direct care and coordination of care services provided by other health care providers. The concept of continuum of care used in case management reflects the necessity to deliver different types of services within one setting or across multiple settings, including medical, social, psychological and nursing services. According to experts, “the continuum facilitates the stability, continuity and comprehensiveness of service to an individual and maximizes the coordination of care and services” (Gibson et al., 2008, p. 32). In case management practices, patients are provided on-going care and clinical treatment.The Concept of Continuum of Care Essay

For example, patients are provided services, which include not only hospitalization, but also outpatient therapy sessions. The continuum is focused on various types of care, including primary care, acute care and home services. Case management depends on the scope of the continuum care. According to Diane Huber(2005), “the continuum of care may be conceived of as within a facility, across the lifespan, across specific transitions or across other defined episodes or spans of time”(p. 8). The concept of continuum of care forms the basis of case management programs because case management in health care is aimed at moving individuals along the continuum care in order to provide high quality health care services.

The weaknesses of discharge planning as it is practiced in acute care settings today include poor management practices and nursing practices, which lead to challenges caused to high-risk patients because of denied reimbursement. This could be improved using a case management model.The Concept of Continuum of Care Essay