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…
The Patient Navigator Blog
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.
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.
A recent meta-analysis published in online edition of the Archives of Internal Medicine has concluded that, “Acupuncture is effective for the treatment of chronic pain and is therefore a reasonable referral option.”
Patient navigation and patient advocacy are dynamic and growing professions. This article explores the background and current landscape of patient navigation and advocacy.
The bewildering sensation of too much information, yet not enough knowledge to use it, is the reality for many people faced with a serious illness or condition. How do you decide what to do?
In all cases, physicians and patients owe each other certain basic obligations. Here is our list for a better relationship.
There are multiple problems with regard to pain management in the United States, including a puritanical history that has contempt for suffering and enormous misunderstanding about pain management and addiction.
I received the news last week – two more friends have been diagnosed with breast cancer. I cried. This is the fourth friend in less than two years that has been diagnosed with cancer – a diagnosis that is frightening, life-altering and potentially life-ending. This isn’t fair. Why is this happening? These are all…
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.
Research has shown that dark chocolate improves blood vessel functioning, thus lowering blood pressure, taking stress off your heart and helping your blood circulate more efficiently. Dark chocolate also has antioxidant qualities, which come from flavonoids found in cocoa. So on Valentine’s Day, nothing says “I love you” like some delicious, dark chocolate
We all have cancer cells in our bodies. The good news is that, for most of us, our body’s natural defenses know how to defeat these defective, tumor-causing cells, and they never get the chance to grow up into a full-blown cancer. Whether you’ve had cancer or not, any person who wants to improve their chances of avoiding cancer should read Dr. David Servan-Schreiber’s very important book called “Anti-Cancer – A New Way of Life.”
The words “clinical trials” can conjure up images of desperate medical experiments with little hope of success. In reality, medical advances and breakthroughs can and have resulted from clinical trials. Without them, we wouldn’t have many of the treatments we have today.
I am encouraged – most of the people I know who have had cancer have beaten their disease and become cancer survivors. They struggled through the chemotherapy, the radiation treatment, surgery, physical and emotional upheavals and come out on the other side. It is a time of celebration and elation. But then the reality of…
Many of you reading this blog have experienced some type of difficult health situation, for yourselves, a friend or family member. It’s also what makes so many of us passionate about helping others through their illness. It’s why Patient Navigator exists. Since it’s the New Year, most people take some type of inventory of their…
The National Association of Healthcare Advocacy Consultants sets professional goals and provides a clear voice and reasoned opinions on health care policy matters.
A parent’s struggle to decide whether or not to give her 8-month old boy the H1N1 vaccination.
If you are interested in hearing the types of things Patient Navigator can do to help you or a loved one, please listen in to this radio show. We welcome your feedback.
I attended a four-day training sponsored by the Center for Mind-Body Medicine in Washington, D.C. from June 11-14. It is called CancerGuides II and it was extraordinary. During this training, we learned to create safe, effective individualized programs of comprehensive and integrative care for people with cancer and their families. I met hundreds of practitioners…
The March 29, 2009 edition of Parade magazine featured an article about the new specialty of patient navigation. The article highlights some of what navigators can do. For now, the National Cancer Institute has undertaken several pilot projects to train and deploy navigators in medically underserved areas. But as the article also correctly points out, patient navigators…
A cancer diagnosis thrusts patients and their families into an unfamiliar world of doctors, tests and treatment options. They must simultaneously find information, make decisions under pressure, seek the best medical care, cope with family changes, and deal with insurance, financial, employment, caregiver or school issues. Here are 10 suggestions to help you as you…
If you had your own patient advocate to guide you through illness and aging, what would you want to ask them?