In the Belly of the Beast: A Case Study of Social Work in a Managed Care Organization

Lisa S. Patchner

Abstract


The employment of social workers within managed care organizations is
a new phenomenon. As such, this case study utilized an exploratory-descriptive
design that assessed social workers as case managers within a Medicaid HMO. The
semi-structured interviews, focus groups, and participant observation suggested
that the use of case management services, delivered primarily by social workers,was
effective in addressing the bio-psychosocial needs of Medicaid consumers within a
provider-driven HMO. Study findings recommend specific knowledge and skills that
social workers need in order to prepare for practice within managed care environments.

Keywords


Managed care; Medicaid; case management; HMO, health care policy

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