American Sentinel University’s MSN Program Helps Nurse Implement Kindred Healthcare’s Case Management Systems

Hospitals Are Looking Increasingly to Their Case Management Departments to Provide Support in Rapidly Changing Environment

AURORA, Colo. – August 6, 2015 – Case managers play an even greater role than ever before in hospitals and healthcare facilities and are relied on for their thorough understanding of healthcare delivery and their ability to combine quality, efficiency, and resource management in the delivery of patient care. A well-designed case management program is a key factor in the effective use of hospital resources and is imperative for continued success.

A nurse must earn an advanced degree with specialized training to become a case manager and an MSN program is a nurse’s passport to a specialty field, like case management, that can be applied to the nursing practice to enhance patient care and improve outcomes.

So when Carolyn Leeder, a career nurse and director of nursing for a convalescent and rehabilitation hospital in Tiburon, California, discovered case management, she knew this was the right specialty for her.

“The medical system can be confusing and difficult to navigate for families without someone to guide them through it,” she says. “On the patient side, I saw over and over the maze of legislation that patients encounter. It made me see how important case managers are in getting patients the care they need.”

Elaine Foster, Ph.D., MSN, RN, Associate Dean of American Sentinel’s graduate nursing programs says that today case managers play an important role in healthcare facilities. “Case managers must be an advocate for both the hospital and the patient to ensure quality care in order to address individual patient needs and maintain an effective resource allocation for the facility’s financial health,” says Dr. Foster.

A Conscious Career Change
Leeder moved to Texas for a job as an RN case manager in a home health facility. She became an outpatient case manager for a medical group in 2006, earned the Certified Case Manager credential in 2008 and joined Kindred Healthcare in 2010 as the district case manager for the Northwest territory and is now the Northwest district director of case management.

From her earliest days in case management, she knew she wanted to earn an MSN degree. Kindred Healthcare was supportive of her decision, and since American Sentinel University was an education partner with Kindred Healthcare, she received one of the company’s first West Region Case Management Scholarships for employees pursuing master’s degrees in case management and began the program in 2012.

Achieving Her Career Goals
Leeder travels more than 70 percent of the time, visiting hospitals throughout her five-state region. She says that an online program wasn’t just a desire for her, it was a must. “I couldn’t have achieved this goal in a traditional program,” she says. “I had great support at Kindred and at home, and American Sentinel’s MSN program was set up for busy, working professionals like me.”

Leeder graduated from American Sentinel University in 2013 with the MSN, case management specialization. In her new job, she trains all physicians, coders, and case managers in her district on case management procedures and educates the C-suite on the importance of case management company wide.

“I benefitted most from the interactions with peers in my field,” she says. “Along with the expertise of my professors and the ability to specialize in case management, I gained a great deal from the program.”

A Well-Rounded Resume
With her MSN, case management specialization, Leeder says she now has the credentials she needs to move up when the opportunity presents itself.

“With the complexities of healthcare today, case managers must be aware of the latest requirements and how to implement them,” says Dr. Foster. “Students in the MSN, case management specialization program at American Sentinel not only learn the theory with their specialized training, but they also have practice experience hours to apply to what they are learning to real-life situations.”

Leeder says it’s important in any senior level management position to have a master’s degree. “For me, this degree is much more than initials on a piece of paper. It’s something I worked hard for and has given me the ability to become a better mentor to others in my job. I gained new skills and can do my job better.”

Learn More About Online MSN Case Management Program
American Sentinel’s CCNE-accredited MSN, case management specialization program teaches nurses to deliver personalized services to patients. The program focus is improving patient care through understanding patient referrals, planning and delivery of care, evaluating patient results, and evaluating overall program effectiveness. Learn more about American Sentinel’s online MSN Case Management Specialization program at 

About American Sentinel University
American Sentinel University delivers accredited online degree programs in nursing (BSN, MSN, and DNP) and healthcare management (MBA Healthcare, MS in information systems management, and MS in business intelligence and analytics). Its affordable, flexible bachelor’s and master’s nursing degree programs are accredited by the Commission for the Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), of One Dupont Circle, NW Suite 530, Washington, D.C., 20036. The DNP program is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) of 3343 Peachtree Road NE, Suite 850, Atlanta, Ga., 30326. The University is accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission, DEAC, 1101 17th Street NW, Suite 808, Washington, D.C. 20036, (202) 234-5100,  

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