How to Become a Case Management Nurse:
The Definitive Guide

Are you organized and always willing to help others?

Have you been interested in nursing, but want to have a more personal career?

Then, a profession like a Case Management Nurse might be just what you are looking for.

A Case Management Nurse oversees long term health plans for patients, many Case Management Nurses work with specific illnesses or issues.

If having a long term, personal, relationship with patients is something that you look forward to, then step into this career.

What is a Case Management Nurse?

A Case Management Nurse is very important in the medical field.

When a patient is beginning treatment or learning about a diagnosis, it can take many doctors and nurses to find the right health care team.

Having a specific nurse on your team can make you feel less afraid of the changes ahead, and more able to deal with your illness.

A Case Management Nurse can turn into a friendly face for patients who are dealing with illnesses like cancer, diabetes, HIV/AIDS, etc.

The job of a Case Management Nurse is to create wellness plans for patients, keep up with the patient, and follow through with care.


A Case Management Nurse is a part of a medical team assigned to specific patients.

There may be several patients that a Case Management Nurse must care for every day, and some of the duties that could be involved include:

  • Work with a medical team to develop a patient plan
  • Coordinate doctor’s appointments and surgeries
  • Monitor medication
  • Educate patients and family/caretakers
  • Work with insurance companies
  • Research treatments


The average Case Management Nurse in the United States will make around $79,000 a year.

The range in salary can vary depending on certain factors.

Case Management Nurses that are just beginning their career may make a little less.

Typically, new Case Management Nurses can make around $72,000 a year.

When given time in the field, certifications, education, and other specialties, it is possible for a Case Management Nurse to make around $87,000 a year.

Some other factors that may play into salary differences for Case Management Nurses are the location of the job and the population of the city surrounding the hospital or another facility.

  • Annually
  • Monthly
  • Hourly

Annually National Average Salary: $77,460


Average Annual Salary by State

StateAvg. Annual Salary
District of Columbia$94,820
New Hampshire$73,880
New Jersey$84,280
New Mexico$73,300
New York$87,840
North Carolina$66,440
North Dakota$66,290
Rhode Island$82,310
South Carolina$64,840
South Dakota$59,540
West Virginia$63,220
Puerto Rico$35,040
Virgin Islands$68,500

Annual Average Salary: Top 5 States

The top earning state in the field is California, where the average salary is $113,240.

These are the top 5 earning states in the field:

California - $113,240
Hawaii - $104,060
District of Columbia - $94,820
Massachusetts - $93,160
Oregon - $92,960
* Employment conditions in your area may vary. * Salary information based on the May 2019 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey.
Conducted by: Bureau of Labor Statistics, Department of Labor.

How to Become a Case Management Nurse

Step 1Earn a Bachelors Degree

There are many universities that offer bachelor degrees in Nursing.

Many employers even allow you to work as a nurse with an Associates’ degree in Nursing.

However, if you’d like to become a Case Management Nurse,  you’ll need a Bachelors’s degree.

It may even be possible to earn your degree through an online university.

Some of the courses that you can expect to take to earn a Bachelors degree in Nursing may include:

  • Anatomy and Physiology
  • Microbiology
  • Nutrition and Diet
  • Nursing Assessment
  • Pharmacology/Math of Medicine
  • Life Span
  • Statistics
  • Nursing Research

You will also likely be required to take several other courses like English, History, etc.

Earning a Bachelors’s degree can take around four years.

Step 2Become a Registered Nurse

After you get that Bachelors’s degree, it’s time to become registered.

You’ll need to figure out which licensing board you’ll work with through your state, and then find out where you can take the exam.

You’ll need to pass the exam in order to become a registered nurse.

The requirements include basic knowledge of nursing, proof of accredited education, and have several hours of nursing experience.

The exam to become a registered nurse is the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses.

Every state board requires passing this test in order to become a registered nurse.

The exam costs $200 dollars to take and can be taken 3 times a year.

Registration is required to work in most states and must be renewed every 2-3 years.

Step 3Gain Additional Training

The most important part of being a nurse, especially a Case Management Nurse, is having experience in the field.

You can read all of the books on the topic that you want, but actually being out in the field gets you the education that you need to be a successful Case Management Nurse or a registered nurse in general.

Typically, nursing students work internships or externships in order to gain experience in school.

Then, it’s possible to work as a nurse without registration for several months in order to gain experience.

After you become registered, it’s important to work hard and continue to learn throughout your career.

This way, you’ll gain promotions and raises in no time.

Step 4Obtain Case Management Certification

After you have had your experience in nursing, it’s time to decide if you want to continue on as a registered nurse or try for certification in something like Case Management.

In order to become a Case Management Nurse, you’ll need:

  • Proof of completion of secondary education
  • RN license
  • A minimum of 2,000 hours of clinical practice in Case Management Nursing
  • 2 years of full-time employment as a registered nurse

The certification can be earned by passing the Nursing Case Management board certification exam.

This exam is competency-based, which means that it looks at your scores and decides the next questions based on previous answers.

This credential is valid for five years, after that the exam must be taken again.

Once you earn a certification as a Case Management Nurse, you’ll be able to work in areas like:

  • Geriatrics
  • Urgent Care
  • Surgery
  • Pediatrics


No matter which path you’d like to take in nursing, you’ll either need to gain an Associates’ degree in Nursing or a Bachelors’s degree in Nursing.

To become a Case Management Nurse, you’ll need to have a Bachelors’s degree in nursing.

Most colleges offer this degree, and it’s even possible to study for a nursing degree online.

One thing to keep in mind is to make sure that the school is accredited, and that you’ll be able to become a registered nurse after you graduate.

Some of the courses that you can expect to take with a Nursing degree include:

  • Psychology
  • Physiology
  • Nursing Fundamentals
  • Mental Health
  • Women and Infant Health
  • Leadership Management
  • Ethics of Nursing
  • Community and Environmental Nursing

These courses will be taken alongside typical courses like History, English, and Math.

You can expect a typical Bachelors’s degree of education to take around four years to complete.

Having a Bachelors degree in Nursing can earn you several careers, such as:

  • Clinical nurse specialist
  • Nursing director
  • Nurse educator
  • Public health nurse
  • Clinical research nurse
  • A registered nurse in a hospital

It may also be required that you do clinical throughout nursing school.

Clinicals are when students work within hospitals or other facilities to put what they learn in the classroom to the test.

In order to continue on with your career as a Case Management Nurse, you’ll want to gain some specific experience.

A Case Management Nurse has a more administrative role than a typical registered nurse who works on the hospital floor.

Some of the places that you can find employment as a Case Management Nurse include:

  • Hospitals
  • Home care facilities
  • Businesses
  • Universities

After you gain experience, you’ll need to become a registered nurse.

By taking an exam and passing, you’ll be licensed in that state that you work, this is a requirement in most states.

Video About The Career


Depending on the rules of the state you plan to work in, you’ll likely need one of three credentials in order to become a certified Case Management Nurse.

These credentials are:

  • Nursing Case Management Certification
  • Accredited Case Management Credential
  • Certified Case Manager Credential

The Nursing Case Management Certification requires that you take an exam.

The eligibility for this certification includes:

  • Meet licensure and education requirements per state
  • Have 2,000 hours of employment as a Case Management Nurse
  • Be of good moral character and abide by the CCMC Code of Professional Conduct

This certification is valid for five years, and after must be renewed with another exam.

The Accredited Case Management certification is specifically designed for this type of career.

The certification is unique among the others because of:

  • Specifically addressing Case Management Nursing
  • Tests core knowledge shared by Case Management Nurses and Social Workers
  • Uses a clinical simulation test

In order to take this exam, you must be a registered nurse and have at least 2 years of experience as a Case Management Nurse.

You’ll also need to renew this certification every five years.

For the last credential, the Certified Case Manager, you’ll need to:

  • Have a Bachelors degree in Nursing
  • Have at least 2 years of nursing experience
  • Be a registered nurse

As with the other certifications, this one is also valid for five years.

Depending on where you work, your employer may require different credentials.

Ask your employer what their preference is before sticking to one certification.

There are many reasons that it is a good idea to obtain a certification, even if you’ve already got the job.

Employers see certifications as an extra step, and it means that you are serious about the career.

If you don’t already have the job, a certification opens up many more career opportunities.

Certification Example:

case management nurse certificate

Average Training Program Duration: 4+ Years

The average training program to become a Case Management Nurse depends on how long you go to school and how much experience you have in the field.

A Case Management Nurse typically has a Bachelors’s degree, which takes around four years to complete.

Then, it is likely that you will need some experience in the field before becoming a Case Management Nurse.

This typically takes around two years.

It can take around 6 years to become a Case Management Nurse.

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Job Outlook

There will always be a need for nurses, and with the aging population and the suffering of health issues like cancer, diabetes and heart disease, the need for Case Management Nurses is severe.

The job of a Case Management Nurse is difficult, but these nurses are needed more than ever.

With the opening of new hospitals, physicians’ offices, and other health centers around the country, more and more jobs are available.

For the next decade, the career of a Case Management Nurse will grow around 18 percent.

This is much better than many other careers in the medical field and beyond.

* The numbers below take into consideration all medical and health services managers and are not specific to case management nurses.

Employment Growth Projection: 18%


That's a higher than average projected growth of 71,500 jobs.

Should You Become a Case Management Nurse?

Overall Satisfaction

Overall Satisfaction: High

Case Management Nurses are very satisfied with their careers, due to the fact that they have a more relaxed role than your typical registered nurse.

A Case Management Nurse helps patients with longterm illnesses, which means they typically have a handful of patients, rather than an entire floor.

Although most nurses love their jobs, it is clear that Case Management Nurses feel that they have better hours and benefits.

Average Salary

Average Salary: High

The average salary for a Case Management Nurse in the United States is around $79,000 annually.

There are Case Management Nurses who are just starting out in their jobs that can make around $72,000 a year.

Also, there are Case Management Nurses that have certifications or specialties and have been working for several years, these nurses can make around $87,000 a year.

The population and area of the facility that you work can also determine the salary for a Case Management Nurse.

Job Growth Outlook

Job Growth Outlook: High

It looks as if the job growth for a Case Management Nurse will be exceptional within the next ten years.

The career is going to grow by around 18 percent.

This is much faster than many occupations within the same field.

Employment is projected to grow for hospitals, health practitioners, and outpatient facilities.

Due to the aging population and struggle with the disease in the country, there will be more need for Case Management Nurses in the near future.

Nurses will be needed for the foreseeable future, so there’s no stopping a Case Management Nurse.

Education Duration

Education Duration: 4+ Years

It can take a little while to become a Case Management Nurse.

Oftentimes, prospective nurses will either earn an Associate of Science in Nursing, or a Bachelor of Science in Nursing.

An Associates’s degree can take around two years to complete.

A Bachelors’s degree takes four years to complete.

Then, depending on the type of job that you want to get, you’ll likely need some experience.

Overall, it can take around 4-6 years to become a Case Management Nurse.

Personal Skills Needed

Personal Skills Needed

First and foremost, Case Management Nurses are strong both physically and emotionally and should be able to hold their own, because nursing is tough.

Along with that, a Case Management Nurse should have the following skills:

  • Time management
  • Communication
  • Role modeling/tolerance
  • Organizational
  • Conflict Resolution
  • Creative personality
  • Engaging and good bedside manner
  • Flexibility

Case Management Nurses should be caring and willing to go the extra mile for their patients, if you feel this is something that you could do, why not be a Case Management Nurse?

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What is the average salary of a Case Management Nurse?

The average salary for a Case Management Nurse in the United States is around $79,000 a year.

Depending on how much education you have, if you have any certifications or specialties, and how much time you’ve spent working as a nurse, it’s possible to make up to $87,000 as a Case Management Nurse.

Just starting out, it is more likely that you’ll make around $72,000 a year.

But with determination, you can make the big bucks in no time.

Q. How long does it take to become a Case Management Nurse?

Some nurses go for their Associate’s degree in nursing which can take around two years to complete.

It can take around four years to finish a Bachelors’s degree in nursing.

Then you’ll need to have some experience in the field, which can take around two years because most employers require two years of experience.

So, all in all, it can take anywhere from for to six years to become a Case Management Nurse.

Q. What does a Case Management Nurse do?

A Case Management Nurse works with patients with longterm illnesses like cancer, diabetes, heart disease and so on.

Working with a team of doctors and specialists, a Case Management Nurse keeps a record of the patient’s plan of action and keeps on track with the patient.

This ensures that the patient understands their illness and how to take care of themselves.

A Case Management Nurse may also deal with insurance companies and other doctors in separate facilities.

Q. What is the demand for Case Management Nurses?

There will likely always be a demand for nurses, we can pretty much count on that.

With the rise in disease, as well as the aging baby boomer population, more and more Case Management Nurses are going to be needed in the near future.

Nursing is a very lucrative career, and having experience in Case Management Nursing can provide a professional experience.

Q. How much does it cost to become a Case Management Nurse?

This all depends on how much education you want to receive.

Some people earn their Associates degree, which can cost around $15,000.

Others decide that they want to earn their Bachelors’s degree, which can cost another $15,000 to $30,000.

Whatever you decide to do, make sure you earn a certification as a Case Management Nurse, which can cost around $500.

All in all, it can cost over $30,000 to become a Case Management Nurse.

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