By Dr. Colleen Morley DNP, RN, CCM, CMAC, CMCN, ACM-RN, FCM
Every year, on December 5th, people around the world come together to celebrate International Volunteer Day (IVD). This special day, designated by the United Nations General Assembly in 1985, is an opportunity to recognize and honor the tremendous contributions of volunteers who selflessly dedicate their time, skills, and energy to making a positive impact in their communities and beyond.
Volunteering knows no boundaries, and on this day, we celebrate the diversity and inclusivity that volunteers bring to various causes and projects. Whether it's helping the less fortunate, caring for the environment, supporting education, or promoting healthcare, volunteers play a crucial role in addressing social, economic, and environmental challenges faced by societies globally.
The essence of International Volunteer Day lies in its ability to inspire and mobilize people from all walks of life to get involved and contribute their unique strengths for the greater good. Volunteers are the backbone of community-driven initiatives, and their compassion and dedication exemplify the true spirit of humanity.
Within the realm of healthcare, one organization that embodies the spirit of volunteerism and compassionate care is the Case Management Society of America (CMSA). Founded on the principles of collaboration, knowledge-sharing, and patient advocacy, CMSA brings together dedicated case managers who are committed to improving the lives of their clients.
Case management is a crucial aspect of healthcare that involves coordinating services and support for individuals facing complex medical or social challenges. These dedicated professionals act as guides, assisting patients in navigating the complexities of the healthcare system, accessing resources, and achieving their healthcare goals.
CMSA is unique in that it operates with the passion and dedication of volunteers who believe in the power of case management to transform lives. Through their efforts, they strive to elevate the standards of care, advocate for patient rights, and promote a patient-centered approach to healthcare.
CMSA provides its members with valuable resources, educational opportunities, and networking platforms, fostering professional growth and the exchange of best practices. Volunteers lead chapters, engage in mentorship, work on committees at local and national levels, share insights, and collaborate with peers, further enhancing their ability to make a positive impact on the lives of those they serve. By engaging in these initiatives, they promote the importance of patient advocacy, the value of coordinated care, and pivotal role of professional case management.
On International Volunteer Day, it is only fitting to celebrate the dedication and passion of volunteer-led organizations like CMSA, whose contributions in the field of healthcare not only improve the quality of care but also inspire others to embrace the spirit of volunteerism in all aspects of life.
International Volunteer Day serves as a reminder that every individual has the power to make a positive impact, and volunteer-led organizations like CMSA demonstrate that compassion and dedication can transform the lives of individuals and communities alike. On this special day, let us celebrate and honor the volunteers who work tirelessly to create a better world for all.
Bio: Dr. Colleen Morley DNP RN CCM CMAC CMCN ACM-RN FCM is the Associate Chief Clinical Operations Officer, Care Continuum for University of Illinois Health System and the current President of the Case Management Society of America National Board of Directors. She has held positions in acute care as Director of Case Management at several acute care facilities and managed care entities in Illinois, overseeing Utilization Review, Case Management and Social Services for over 14 years; piloting quality improvement initiatives focused on readmission reduction, care coordination through better communication and population health management. Her current passion is in the area of improving health literacy. She is the recipient of the CMSA Foundation Practice Improvement Award (2020) and ANA Illinois Practice Improvement Award (2020) for her work in this area. Dr. Morley also received the AAMCN Managed Care Nurse Leader of the Year in 2010 and the CMSA Fellow of Case Management designation in 2022. Her 1st book, “A Practical Guide to Acute Care Case Management”, published by Blue Bayou Press was released in February, 2022. Dr. Morley has over 20 years of nursing experience. Her clinical specialties include Med/Surg, Oncology and Pediatric Nursing. She received her ADN at South Suburban College in South Holland, IL; BSN at Jacksonville University in Jacksonville, FL, MSN from Norwich University in Northfield, VT and her DNP at Chamberlain College of Nursing.