By Kathleen Moreo, RN, BC, BSN, BHSA, CCM, CDMS, FCM
Compassion and care are two of the key attributes of any case manager. They are woven into the fabric of our DNA and provide us with the drive and passion we need to overcome the many obstacles of an often-convoluted health care system. These same attributes affect many other aspects of our lives, helping to shape the kind of person that we are and how we react to our environment around us.
Many case managers I know are conservationists, like me, even though they may not recognize this strength within them. Think about it: the same compassion and care that allows us to be good case managers influences our thoughts about the people, places, natural resources, and wildlife around us. It isn’t something many of us might think about, but our natural tendency to care about both domesticated and wild animals, or our forests, mountains, oceans, and other natural resources is an attribute that binds us to each other beyond the jobs we do every day.
One of the things I love about being a conservationist is that it requires no advanced degree, job title, or experience. National Geographic states, “You can be an artist, a manager, an investor, an engineer, an organic farmer…anyone can pivot to make a real contribution to conservation.” (Source: https://blog.nationalgeographic.org/2018/08/31/how-to-be-a-conservationist/ ; accessed June 4, 2003.) _
Whether you are fulfilling a lifelong career in case management, are a newbie to the role, or have retired from the profession, it’s a good time to think about your role as a conservationist. It isn’t a mission we ever really retire from doing. We can influence and protect our wildlife and natural resources as simply as by making daily choices in our lives, such as using and refilling a personal water bottle throughout the day rather than drinking from prepackaged plastic bottles. We can donate to a favorite non-profit related to conservation. If time permits, we can volunteer at one hundreds of organizations committed to conservation across the country.
This Fall, I will be participating in EagleWatch, one of the premier community science programs in Florida that monitors the protection of nearly 40% of the state’s nesting eagles. (Source: https://cbop.audubon.org/conservation/about-eaglewatch-program ; accessed June 4, 2023.) EagleWatch is part of Audubon Florida, which has been monitoring bald eagle populations in Florida for more than 30 years, playing a key role in helping to move our nation’s national bird from an endangered species to flourishing as our proud national symbol for freedom. Similar programs exist in many other states.
Eagles are my passion; what drives you? As case managers, our passion to help and influence others extends beyond our patients and their families. This innate passion allows us to positively influence our environments as conservationists, to be stewards of resources that go well beyond the health care system and affect future generations.
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Bio: Kathleen Moreo, RN, BC, BSN, BHSA, CCM, CDMS is a board certified registered nurse and Founder of PRIME Education, LLC. From 1994 to 2000, she guided the organization to advance the science of learning and behavior change through education and research. Her health career began at Community Hospital of South Broward in Florida, where she conducted quality improvement and performance improvement initiatives to ensure medical necessity for Medicare and Medicaid populations. Moreo graduated summa cum laude from Barry University with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and cum laude with a bachelor in health services administration. An executive registered nurse with multiple board certifications in case management and disability rehabilitation, Moreo currently serves in diverse voluntary health care roles including editorial board member of Professional Case Management Journal, leadership mentor of the Governance Committee of the Case Management Society of America, senior advisor to Synchronyx patient health solution company, and volunteer case management for patients and families in need. Over her career, she has received numerous professional awards including the following pinnacle awards: 2019 and 2016 William Campbell Felch Awards for Research in Continuing Education from the Alliance for Continuing Education in the Health Professions (ACEhp); 2017 ACEhp Distinguished Leadership Award; 2012 Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy Spirit of Volunteerism Award; and the 2000 Case Manager of the Year Award from CMSA. Moreo has published nearly 40 peer-reviewed research-informed papers in medical and health care journals and continues to participate in and publish research to improve health outcomes.