A Certified Senior Advisor (CSA ®) is a specialist in aging and is committed to ethical behavior and knowledge required to benefit senior clients and their families. Becoming a CSA gives professionals who work with seniors an increased understanding and appreciation of the challenges that the majority of seniors in the United States face. By applying senior-specific knowledge to their own professional skills, CSAs can be of greater service and help to seniors by: Communicating better with seniors; Relating to seniors from a foundation of heightened awareness of seniors’ values, needs and specific issues; Demonstrating their understanding of the special ethical standards of working with seniors; and Guiding seniors to qualified resources when seniors’ needs are outside their area of functional expertise
Sarah Harwood has been a Certified Senior Advisor (CSA ®) for over three years. She chose to become certified as she felt it is important to learn as much as she could about all aspects of aging so she could better help her clients and their families. The CSA program is a rigorous education on all aspects of aging. It covers everything from Medicare, Medicaid, Veterans issues and benefits to Social Security, Estate Planning, Financial Planning and more. The course is designed for the professional to know a little about all aspects seniors are facing. Sarah is not an expert in financial planning, for example, but she understands enough to refer to the right professional who is an expert and who knows how best to work with seniors.
Sarah also appreciates the ethical standards required by being a CSA. All CSAs must adhere to the CSA Code of ethics and their rules in their professional interactions. Maintaining her CSA certification requires her to recognize potential “ethical gray areas” and to consciously make the best possible ethical choice for the situation. A CSA agrees to refer seniors to qualified professionals who can help them, when the seniors’ needs are outside their areas of expertise.
Sarah has to be recertified as a CSA every two years. To be recertified Sarah must complete 20 Certified Education Units in approved topics relating to seniors and complete the ethics training. In addition, Sarah is required to have a background check every two years.
Sarah feels being a Certified Senior Adviser shows her commitment to doing what’s right for seniors. The ongoing educational and ethical requirements and network of CSA professionals makes her stand out as somebody has gone the extra step to help her clients.