Case notes should be entered to record and document client contacts, case changes, data exchange exception clearances, interviews/initial eligibility determinations and case reviews/re-determinations of eligibility. Good case notes are their own reward in the benefits they provide but there are many other reasons why case notes are important. Below is a list of some of those reasons.
Good Case Notes:
- Avoid errors as state and federal auditors know why you did what you did. Information that is not documented in case notes can’t be considered in an audit.
- Explain the history of the case as the notes record what the situation was at a specific time a case action was taken.
- Provide a necessary record of information used for eligibility determination and case management.
- Explain the eligibility determination decisions made for each program.
- Explain changes to help you remember what action you took and why.
- Help others reviewing your case to know what has happened and why and provide a quick and informed response to inquiries or complaints.
- Function as the primary source for previous information as computer screens are sometimes hard to follow.
- Help support and call center staff efficiently assist the client as quickly as possible.
- Increase accuracy by review of previous information.
- Enable recognition of inconsistent information trends concerning eligibility criteria such as income, shelter, etc.
- Save time. Information can found in the same location in each case.
- Allows others to take action on your case if you are gone.
- Help the agency speak with one voice consistently.
- Store information permanently in case notes