How Do Case Management Services Help Clients During Addiction Treatment

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While there are many different kinds of mental health professionals who work in addiction treatment centers, by far one of the most important is case managers. Their support, expertise, and dedication to their clients can help to greatly reduce the chance of relapse, readmission, and significantly improve patient outcomes in the long term.

Ideally, an individual’s rehab experience should provide them with the tools they need to succeed in life long after they’ve left their treatment center. Case managers play a vital role in addiction treatment by helping patients to transition from their program and back out into the “real world.” This smooth transition prevents a shock and helps to reduce the chance of relapse. But what exactly is a case manager? And how exactly do they ensure that smooth transition?

What is a Case Manager in Addiction Treatment?

Generally, because of the similar nature of the work, case managers tend to be social workers, but that’s not always the case as they don’t require the same level of schooling. Unlike a social worker, unless a case manager happens to have an additional credential they may have any level of schooling whether it’s an associate’s degree or a doctorate. Instead, they are armed with a comprehensive and practical understanding of the demands of reentering the world after living in rehab and the nature of addiction.

What Does a Case Manager Do in an Addiction Treatment Center?

Their practical knowledge of addiction treatment and the demands that are placed on a patient in recovery allow case managers working in addiction treatment to counsel their clients individually and to help them to build a comprehensive care plan that works for them. Unlike a therapist or a social worker, a case manager will not conduct therapy with their clients, though they will have an intimate understanding of their needs and their situation.

There are a number of different types of case management services that a patient might encounter over the course of their addiction treatment including:

Strength-Based Perspective

Case managers working from a strength-based perspective are focused on getting to know their clients so that they can identify their strengths and build a long-term care plan around growing those strengths. This care plan might include treatment outside of the traditional clinical modality and might include recommendations of spiritual development or alternative medicine.


These caseworkers also tend to develop more in-depth, long-term relationships with their clients. Their focus is on obtaining comprehensive clinical treatment for a range of their client’s issues. Obtaining counseling, skills development, therapy, and intervention are all on the docket for these case managers.


Their focus is generally on linking their client with resources very quickly. They will not work as closely with their clients but can help determine the level of care required to refer them out to all the appropriate agencies. They generally work in high-volume environments with quick turnarounds like hospitals, where meeting needs quickly is paramount.

Assertive Community Perspective

Case managers operating with this perspective will focus on meeting their clients in “natural settings,” outside of care facilities. They may meet clients in their homes, or in a nearby coffee shop.

Another type of case manager develops a more in-depth relationship with their clients and works with them long-term to meet their day-to-day needs whether it’s acquiring appropriate childcare, managing medication or comorbid conditions, or obtaining transportation.

At any given facility, case managers will be likely to have a different style, but all are competent and all are able to help their clients contend with a variety of different and sometimes opposing needs to be certain that they get what they need.

What Can Case Managers Do For a Client in an Addiction Treatment Facility?

  • Brokering for resources by contacting other agencies (like the Social Security Administration, insurance companies, the state department of healthcare services, and other community partners) on behalf of their client to assess what additional help they have access to upon leaving a rehab facility.
  • Determining benefits eligibility for programs like EBT, disability, Medicare or Medicaid, or charities in the community. They may also help to coordinate continued care through church support groups or similar non-clinical therapeutic services.
  • Evaluation of a patient’s progress and a dynamic assessment of their needs for continued care as time goes on.
  • Develop initial plans for long-term care in tandem with their client and with an understanding of their needs.

That can all seem a little abstract. So, what can a case manager do practically for those who require their services? Some case management can help during addiction treatment include:

  • Help them to apply for EBT, Medicare, or Medicaid.
  • They can coordinate obtaining housing either on their own or at a halfway house or another sober living facility.
  • Assist them in locating a psychologist, therapist, or another counselor for one-on-one talk therapy.
  • Help link them to outpatient support groups, or 12 step programs in their community.
  • Locate and coordinate with a psychiatrist or another mental health professional who can prescribe and manage a patient’s medication plan.

Who Can Benefit From The Services a Case Manager Provides?

Anyone in addiction treatment who wants a strong voice in their corner who is rooting for them to succeed, who feels like they want to set themselves up for success in the long-term, could benefit from getting case management in addiction treatment.

Case management is an important resource that offers a lot of practical value to the lives of people who are working to transition out of a detox center. Ensuring that patients have a strong, smart, manageable plan for continued care that’s tailored to their needs is key to their recovery.

Find an Addiction Treatment Center with Case Management in New Jersey Today

If you or a loved one are considering seeking treatment for an addiction, it’s important to pause and really consider the options to ensure you’re choosing the right treatment program for your needs. Doing this on your own can feel overwhelming. Our addiction specialists in Edison, New Jersey can help you intelligently evaluate your needs and link you with a program that’s right for you.

Contact us today and let us help light the path on your road to recovery.

Medically Reviewed: March 25, 2022

Dr Ashley

Medical Reviewer

Chief Editor


All of the information on this page has been reviewed and verified by a certified addiction professional.

Dr Ashley Murray obtained her MBBCh Cum Laude in 2016. She currently practices in the public domain in South Africa. She has an interest in medical writing and has a keen interest in evidence-based medicine.

All of the information on this page has been reviewed and verified by a certified addiction professional.

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