1. Tahan, Hussein M. PhD, RN, FAAN
  2. Kurland, MaryBeth CAE
  3. Baker, Michelle BS, RN, CRRN, CCM


Purpose: The purpose of the national role and function study was to identify the essential activities and necessary knowledge areas for effective professional case management practice from the perspective of those directly involved. The study also aimed to inform the relevance and currency of the blueprint for the case management certification examination.


Primary Practice Settings: The national study covered the diverse case management practices and/or work settings across the full continuum of health and human services and numerous professional disciplines.


Methodology and Sample: This cross-sectional descriptive study used the practice analysis method and online survey research design. It employed a purposive sample of 2,810 certified and not yet certified case managers who responded to an open participation link made available as an online survey. The final study sample supported the conduct of meaningful statistical analyses including multiple subgroup comparisons.


Results: The study identified the common activities (6 domains) and knowledge areas (5 domains) necessary for effective performance by professional case managers. Part I of this 2-part article series described the background of the participants and their perspectives of the practice and the knowledge applied by those responsible for the case manager's role. Part II, as shared in this article, reports on the factor/principal component analysis and how such activity informed the needed update of the test specifications for the Certified Case Manager (CCM) certification examination. The update reflects the continued evolution of the professional case management practice and ensures that the examination remains current and relevant. Of special note is the maturation of the case management practice; for example, greater emphasis on quality, safety, and outcomes; baccalaureate or higher education; and recognition of the value of certification. In addition, the 2019 role and function study has revealed that utilization review/management is evolving potentially as a function that is separate from that of the case manager.


Implications for Case Management Practice: The study has identified the essential activities and knowledge areas of case management practice at both the micro and macro levels. These findings represent the substantive evidence of practice, keeping the CCM credentialing examination evidence-based and maintaining its validity for evaluating the competency of professional case managers. They have also documented the evolution of the practice over the past 5 years. Moreover, the findings may inform the development of programs and curricula for the training and advancement of case managers. The study instrument also is beneficial for use in further research into professional case management practice.