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On Being and Having a Case Manager: A Relational Approach to Recovery in Mental Health
Longhofer, Jeffrey, Paul M. Kubek, and Jerry Floersch
Columbia University Press / Softcover / 2010-03-01 / 0231132662
Recovery from Mental Illness / Social Work
reg price: $48.00 our price: 43.20 (may be subject to change)
256 pages
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On Being and Having a Case Manager stresses the importance of the process of building relationships in helping clients realize independent lives. Based on a two-year study of Marilyn and her case managers, this book emphasizes the intentional exchange of attention and information between case managers, clients, and others within the caring network and clearly outlines a practical method for all service providers, clients, family members, and close friends to follow.

Throughout the day, from moment to moment, relationships fluctuate among doing for, doing with, standing by for support, and doing for oneself. By observing Marilyn and her case manager, the authors prove the value of mutually and continuously monitoring these fluctuations within three primary domains-feeling, thinking, and acting-while carrying out daily activities. These findings show that managers are often stuck in doing-for modes of relating. Indeed, this may be one of the factors that contribute most to case manager and client burnout. While some clients with severe and persistent symptoms may, in fact, frequently require others to do-for, some like Marilyn may not require as much. They may need more doing-with and standing-by to encourage mastery and the internalization of confidence.


"Case managers who work with individuals afflicted in varying degrees from mental illness, short and long term, are our front-line workers—those who have the most direct, ongoing relationships with patients, and those who are crucial to the well being of their patients. On Being and Having a Case Manager is a valuable book full of wonderful stories, sensible guidelines, and original ways of relating to people with mental illness. All those who work in the world of mental health will benefit from its thoroughgoing examination of the centrality of relationships in the treatment of people with mental illness, as well as from its wisdom. A wonderfully useful and necessary book." — Jay Neugeboren, author of Imagining Robert: My Brother, Madness, and Survival and Transforming Madness: New Lives for People Living with Mental Illness

"This book is a 'must read'—not just for case managers but for anyone who works in or relies on the mental health system. At some basic level, all of us understand two fundamental truths about mental health recovery. First, it is individuals, with all their strengths and weaknesses, who are the ultimate locus of change in their lives. Second, personal change, such as recovery, is aided and driven by human relationships. Small wonder that the Institute of Medicine has called for ‘continuous healing relationships’ as a bedrock principle for reforming health care. On Being and Having a Case Manager uses the findings from research to provide well-grounded tips and guidance on how productive human relationships are developed and sustained. This book is about how to do ‘the right thing right’ in mental health." — Michael Hogan , Commissioner of the New York State Office of Mental Health

"Through storytelling, teaching points, and suggestions for practice, the authors weave together an engaging text that effectively focuses on the essence of case management—i.e., the relationship between the client and the case manager. Their suggestions for practice are straightforward and extremely relevant to all existing case mangement models." — William Anthony, Sargent College of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, Boston University

"In the genre of clinical case management, this thought-provoking book takes a serious look at the nature of the client-case manager relationship. One hopes that mental health clients, case managers, and supervisors will use this to discuss the common tensions of independence vs. dependence, doing with vs. doing for, and self-determination vs. management. These are the essential dilemmas of relationship that strongly influence recovery." — Robert E. Drake, Dartmouth Medical School

"This is an important book about case management. In fact, it is the only book I have seen that truly goes into depth about the practice, focusing on the concrete, day-to-day challenges faced by a small number of clients with serious mental illnesses and the case managers who support their recovery efforts. The authors purposely avoid complex professional jargon yet still thoroughly describe in practical language the theories and principles required for comprehensive intervention. I especially like their promotion of ‘reflective’ case management and a relational model of intervention. While particularly appropriate for newer case managers, all professionals will benefit from reading about the fascinating relationships between these consumers and providers and the continuing development of case management as a practice modality." — Joseph Walsh, Virginia Commonwealth University

"As the former Commissioner of Human Services for the State of New Jersey, as the former Executive Director of the American Public Human Services Association, and as an individual with over forty years of experience in the field, I have come to realize the vital contributions of professional case management services to the health and well-being of individuals affected by mental illness and other life challenges. These authors define and explicate an approach I believe will result in better life outcomes for those served, as well as strengthen the policy and practice of 'de-institutionalization' for individuals with severe and persistent mental illness. They create a template for case management services that directly contribute to empowerment, recovery, and wellness." — William Waldman, Rutgers University School of Social Work



Introduction: The Relational Method for Recovery

1. Culinary Arts

2. An Apartment of Her Own

3. Disappearance

4. Realizing the Promise of Case Management: A Relational Approach to Recovery

Appendix 1. Research Methods

Appendix 2. Relational Case Management Form




About the Authors:

Jeffrey Longhofer is an associate professor at the Rutgers University School of Social Work and has served as editor and associate editor of journals for the American Anthropological Association and the Society for Applied Anthropology.

Paul M. Kubek is director of communications at the Center for Evidence-Based Practices at Case Western Reserve University. He specializes in translating the knowledge of researchers and practitioners from multiple disciplines into useful dissemination tools.

Jerry Floersch is associate professor at the Rutgers University School of Social Work and the author of Meds, Money and Manners: The Case Management of Severe Mental Illness, and is the recent recipient of a career development award from the National Institute of Mental Health.

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