Required Duties of the Case Manager
Required duties and responsibilities are defined for case managers in section III, items A-G in “California’s Plan for the Prevention of Unintended Pregnancy for Youth and Non-Minor Dependents.” This Guide for Case Managers expands upon these requirements and provides practical guidance to assist case managers with understanding this work.
A. Provide Youth with a Copy of Their Foster Youth Rights
Case managers shall provide youth with a copy of their Foster Youth Rights upon entry into foster care and at least once every six months at the time of regularly scheduled contact.3 At the time of providing these rights to foster youth, the case manager will have a conversation with the youth, explaining each of their rights and ensuring the youth understands their rights based on their age and developmental level. As some youth may have special needs or may have a language barrier, the case manager should reference their county’s policies and procedures in obtaining appropriate assistance and/or an interpreter as needed to ensure the youth fully understands their rights. Accordingly, case managers should assist foster youth in understanding their rights at any time the youth may have questions about them, but at a minimum as stated above, these conversations are required to occur at the time the youth enters care and every six months thereafter.
B. Provide Youth with Access to Age-appropriate, Medically Accurate Information
Case managers shall provide foster youth with access to age-appropriate, medically accurate information about reproductive and sexual health care including unplanned pregnancy prevention, pregnancy testing, prenatal care, abstinence, use of birth control or protection, and abortion as well as the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of STIs. Case managers may provide this information to youth in many different ways. Information may be provided through county materials from their public health department, referrals to local health clinics such as Planned Parenthood, sharing online resources with the youth, ensuring youth receive access to comprehensive sexual health education provided through their school, offering youth attendance to conferences or trainings about safe sex and pregnancy prevention, or counties may choose to include this subject in their Independent Living Program curriculum. The list of medically accurate online resources, the list at the end of this document can be referenced and given to foster youth.
As a result of the recent passage of SB 89 for youth in foster care 10 years of age and older, case managers are required review the case plan annually and update as needed, to indicate that the case management worker has verified that the youth received comprehensive sexual health education once in junior high and once in high school, per Welfare and Institutions Code section 16501.1(a). The SB 89 also requires the case plan to be updated annually to indicate the case manager has informed the youth of his or her right to access age-appropriate, medically accurate information about reproductive and sexual health care.