Case Management Role Conflict and Role Ambiguity: Research Results

Timeslot: Wednesday, October 12, 2022 - 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM
Session Type: Concurrent Session


Literature overwhelmingly supports that there is considerable confusion about the role and responsibilities of a case manager. Duties and reporting structures vary significantly within and between organizations further adding to increased confusion among other care team members as well as patients. The purpose of this session will be to share the recent research findings of a study that was conducted to assess how case managers perceived role conflict and role ambiguity following a targeted intervention to address these issues, and what factors contributed to the variation in their perceptions. From January 2018 to December 2019, case management leaders at a major multi-specialty health system located in Michigan revised the structure and functions of case management across the health system. This resulted in the creation of the integrated case management (ICM) model, which aligns with the constructs of the Case Management Knowledge Framework created by the CCMC. One primary intended outcome of the ICM model was to reduce role conflict and role ambiguity by creating a unified scope of practice for case managers across the system practicing in an array of inpatient and ambulatory settings. This new job description was available to all those providing or leading case management services. Findings support that role conflict and role ambiguity were both present in the study population. Location within the health system, professional license, and CCM status positively and statistically significantly predicted both factors within the study. The presentation will focus on the implications of the study and how the findings can be applied to case management practices in a variety of health care settings.

Learning Outcomes

  • Elucidate how case managers perceive role conflict and role ambiguity¬†¬†

  • Describe the factors to be considered when attempting to mitigate or rectify role conflict and role ambiguity in practice settings

  • Demonstrate how mitigation of role conflict and role ambiguity leads to improved service delivery and reduced role duplication