November 13, 2020

How to Talk about Geriatric Care Management Fees with Families

Many families understand that caring for a loved one can be expensive, particularly depending on the level of care they need or the lifestyle they want to maintain as they age. Some families can afford care out-of-pocket, but others might struggle to find the money needed to secure the level of care they want.

As care managers, how can we approach difficult financial conversations with families?

Fortunately, conversations about care management fees don’t have to be nerve-wracking or overwhelming. There are several tactics that can help make these conversations compassionate and constructive.

Start during your intake

Every good pre-assessment process includes a robust financial overview. This helps families understand what resources they have, and helps you better understand what services they can afford. Having as much financial information up front can make conversations about payment much easier and more productive. 

If you can demonstrate to families that you’re working alongside them to determine what they can afford, and where the money can come from, you will be able to make these conversations feel less thorny.

Charge on a Sliding Scale

Charging fees on a sliding scale is a common practice for care managers, and can help you retain families that might not be able to afford cost at a higher price. Families with more money to put toward their loved one’s care can shoulder a higher fee, while families with less money for care can pay a more affordable rate.

Use a Cost of Care Pricing Tool

Offering your services at a right-sized price is one common strategy for approaching the financials of providing care. This may not be the best approach to begin with, however, as it’s likely that families have more financial resources at their disposal than they might even realize.

Worthright’s cost of care pricing tool helps care managers and families by tallying their current sources of financing that can go toward care, as well as potentially untapped resources that might otherwise go unnoticed.

Although financial conversations can prove to be a challenge, they’re vital for care managers and families alike. With the right approach—and the right tools—you can make these discussions feel collaborative and more comfortable right from the start. 

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