Beware! This year’s Medicare Open Enrollment period runs from October 15 – December 7. I call it “MediScare” season because private Medicare Advantage insurers try to scare consumers into signing up for their plans. These Advantage plans often over-promise and under-deliver, putting patients at risk. During Open Enrollment, current and future Medicare recipients are bombarded…
The Patient Navigator Blog
When I tell people that I am a patient advocate and my job is to help patients and families navigate through our healthcare system, they often respond “I wish I had known you when ….” They tell me stories about when they were overwhelmed, confused, afraid, or unsatisfied by our complicated, expensive, and often inefficient…
A recent article in the Washington Post caught my attention and reminded me how important it is for anyone on Medicare to keep up with rule changes. This article is especially timely for any patient scheduled for a surgery because of some drastic changes to the list of surgeries that can be performed as a…
Four things you must know when serious illness strikes: Get Smart Fast. Get Organized. Stand Your Ground, Nicely. Always Follow Up. Read this article for detailed helpful hints.
Patient advocacy, or patient navigation, is gaining attention as an emerging profession, both in the media and in the popular lexicon, because it fills so many gaps in the current American health care system. This is especially true today as we continue implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which is changing the landscape for consumers in how health care is delivered and paid for in this country.
Washington Post article about how patient advocates can help during Covid-19 and other situations. I’m very pleased to be included in my hometown newspaper!
Patient Navigator LLC was interviewed for this excellent reporting by Jeff Blyskal at Consumers’ Checkbook. His article explains clearly the many ways an advocate can help patients and families solve problems and find their way through the healthcare maze. If you’d like to learn more about how an advocate can help you, now or in…
Americans pay more for most medications than most countries. The power of the pharmaceutical lobbies is a topic for another day. But the consequences are real for every American, whether using private insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, other insurance or paying out-of-pocket. A friend of mine was recently diagnosed with a type of adult-onset asthma. After three…
Being diagnosed with a serious illness is a frightening experience. It is important that you research and educate yourself about your disease and learn to communicate with your medical team. An informed patient gets better results.
Any serious diagnosis thrusts patients and their families into an unfamiliar world of doctors, tests and treatment options. Here are my suggestions as you begin the journey through illness.
The holiday season – beginning with Thanksgiving and through the New Year – can be unbearably hard if you are grieving the loss of a loved one. Here are my tips to survive.
Easter Seals Project ACTION and the American Medical Association have a new pocket guide for patient transportation options before or after a medical procedure.
Patient navigation and patient advocacy are dynamic and growing professions. This article explores the background and current landscape of patient navigation and advocacy.
In all cases, physicians and patients owe each other certain basic obligations. Here is our list for a better relationship.
In a new study led by a physician at the Mayo Clinic’s facility in Phoenix and published in the journal Radiology, the investigators determined that the virtual technique was just as effective for patients over age 65 as those aged 50-65.
According to an analysis by the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics, about 1% of the privately insured population drives about 25% of overall health costs.
Why do long-term care insurance providers make it so difficult to collect the benefits for which consumers have already paid thousands of dollars?
Approximately 17 percent (36 million) of American adults report some degree of hearing loss. Yet audiological services and hearing aids are rarely covered by insurance.
Only 12% of Americans have proficient health literacy skills, so the majority of adults may have difficulty completing routine health tasks like understanding discharge instructions or diabetes care. There is a strong, independent association between health literacy and health outcomes.
Yoga, pilates, chiropractic care and acupuncture offer natural therapies for back pain. Surgery may end up being necessary, but the patient should explore these alternative other options first.
Many people experience depression during the holiday season. Now imagine trying to face it when you are grieving the loss of a loved one. It is very hard. It is painful. It is unbearably sad. Here are my own tips on how to get through the holidays if you are grieving.
The practice of defensive medicine decreases patient access to health care, and increases costs of health care for everyone. Some patients are left in the lurch as physicians avoid the sickest patients, or those requiring higher-risk procedures, in order to reduce their exposure to malpractice suits. A 2008 study by the Massachusetts Medical Society found that 83% of its physicians practiced defensive medicine at a cost of more than $1.4 billion annually in that state alone.
One of the central aspects of American culture is independence. When a person can no longer drive safely, he or she loses a huge degree of that independence. Proper preparation and discussion can help ease the process.
Lifestyle choices, especially diet and physical activity, are responsible for up to 50% of bone mass and structure. Everyone can make good choices to build strong bones and it’s never too late.