Care Coordinators & Managers

Working as the point person between the patient/client and physicians, nurses, social workers, specialists, and others involved in a person’s care.

This career is right for you, if..

You want a fulfilling and rewarding career
You like to work with people and build relationships
You have good communication skills
You thrive in challenging situations that require problem solving


There are many definitions for each, and they often overlap. There is no universal definition that everyone agrees on, but here are two definitions that give a basic overview:

Care coordination is the process of organizing patient/client care between two or more participants involved in a person’s care (such as health care providers, social service providers, payers) and communicating information with/to everyone involved – including the patient/client – to help ensure safe, appropriate, and effective care.

Job titles include:

  • Care Coordinator
  • Community Care Coordinator
  • Patient Care Coordinator
  • Clinical Care Coordinator

Care management is a process and the related activities that a health care team may use in partnership with patients/clients to manage a person’s medical/mental/behavioral health conditions more effectively to achieve the best possible outcomes.

Job titles include:

  • Care Manager
  • Nurse Care Manager
  • Complex Care Manager
  • Health Home Care Manager
  • Case Manager
  • RN Case Manager

There are many different job titles, and care coordinators (CC) and care managers (CM) often have similar roles. For example, they both:

You could say that care coordinators and care managers are the hub in the wheel! 

One key difference in their roles is that care coordinators usually focus more on coordination of efforts and bridging social care with clinical care. Care managers tend to focus more on chronic disease management, which may involve clinical decision-making. Care managers often (but not always) need clinical degrees/backgrounds, such as registered nurse, LPN, or social worker.

Often, the job title depends on the setting (for example, medical versus behavioral health versus social service), the specific employer, and the location (job titles can vary by state or region within a state).

What they do

CCs and CMs work directly with patients/clients/individuals and/or family members or caregivers to provide a wide variety of functions, such as:

Where they work

Care managers and care coordinators work in a variety of settings, including:

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