Frequently Asked Questions
What is a patient advocate?
Oh, I have heard that term. Was it at the hospital? Was it at the Doctor’s office? Yes but…
There is a third source that many people have not heard about, and that is private pay independent Patient Advocate. Why independent patient advocates? Elimination of conflict of interest. Independent patient advocates have only the patient’s needs in mind.
Let’s start with a sobering statistic; the third most common form of death in the US behind heart disease and cancer is medical errors. What patient advocacy does is help you the patient, the end user of the medical system, by bringing another set of eyes and ears to be sure you don’t become a statistic. How many times have you heard that you must advocate for yourself? This is true buying a car, insurance, money matters, etc. It’s no different with health care. It’s actually more important because it could be your life.
Why would I need a patient advocate?
Patient advocacy is the business of hiring someone else with knowledge and background in health care to be your personalized advocate during a stressful time. You may know law, you may know auto repair, computer IT, engineering, etc., but you don’t fully understand medicine. We are paid for by the patient, a friend, family members, anyone that needs help. You may live out of state and can’t be there for your parent’s every doctor appointment, chemo session, arrange transportation, understanding billing, insurance, understanding the medical terms, questions about tests, and on and on.
Patient advocacy is a relatively new profession but is much needed. As medicine gets more complicated, family members move away, spouses die, friends separate, and we are left by ourselves to figure this out.
Patient advocates can provide medical literature, research opportunities for patients, explain the “language of the disease”, supply reports to distant family members, support patient advocacy groups, act as a liaison between medical providers and patient, help in the decision making processes, help explain to both patients and healthcare providers each other’s intentions.
Can we use your services for short term and long term? Aka; as needed.
Yes, to both. If you have a situation where you need us for only an office visit or an ER admission, one or more nursing home visits or for the duration of a health care event we can tailor your requirements.
I live in another state or city- Can you help me manage my parent’s health care for me?
We will not only do that but if needed and requested we can supply weekly, monthly or quarterly reports and phone calls on the progression of the meetings and happenings as they occur.
Will insurance pay for your services?
One advantage of having an independent Patient Advocate is we represent only the client and/or the client’s representatives. Any involvement with an outside agency limits our ability to be totally independent and help with matters that benefit the patient. The answer is no in most cases. You may be able to submit for HSA accounts.
Can you provide transportation for my family member to medical meetings, appts, etc?
Yes, we have various sources for transportation available
What are your hours?
We are available 24/7 when needed.
What will my doctor think if you attend meetings?
Many doctors are grateful when a third party is a part of the team. They have confided in us that they appreciate someone taking notes and explaining after the meetings what was said and reviewing with their patients what will be the next steps. This ensures better compliance which ultimately translates into better client outcomes.