In this podcast published in June 2022 by the Moss Reports, I’ll speak about the journey that led me into my pioneering second career as a patient navigator and the patient advocacy profession that has since been created as a necessity to overcome the failings and complexities of the American healthcare delivery system. I will…
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.
When choosing a health insurance plan, it’s just as important to make sure the medicines you take regularly are covered as it is to know that your doctor is covered. Selecting the right prescription coverage for you and your family is important to maintaining and restoring your health while managing costs. For those without drug insurance, there are many organizations that can help.
Doctors and other members of the health-care team should regularly assess a patient’s emotional and social needs, and then ensure that the patient is linked to appropriate resources. In reality, though, most do not have the time or staff resources to manage the psycho-social needs of a seriously ill person. Our roadmap series weaves together for you a coherent approach to managing your situation so that you can focus on treatment, healing and recovery.
Avoiding information overload and finding credible, reliable information is difficult. Internet content is not regulated, so you need to be a knowledgeable consumer when you are searching for information about cancer or other diseases. Consider the following questions when viewing health information websites:
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You must learn to be your own best health care advocate. Like it or not, a big part of effectively managing your health care is organizing your medical records. Whether you wish to seek a second opinion or enroll in a clinical trial, being prepared is essential.
You have stacks of medical reports, bills, insurance statements, claim forms, and payment records piling up and causing you stress. Piles of disorganized paper (and electronic records) can surely intimidate any patient. If you ignore the paper, you might not take necessary medical actions or you could fail to maximize your insurance benefits. This roadmap will help you must organize these important documents into a user-friendly system.
This Roadmap is divided into four sections: Finding Assistance for Medicine and Treatment; Finding Assistance for Practical Needs; Finding Assistance with Benefits or Entitlements; Websites We Like.
Your goal is to choose a primary care doctor who will meet your needs and give you quality care. This roadmap will also be useful in choosing any specialists you might need. Primary care doctors are especially trained to serve as your main doctor over the long term. They provide your medical and health care, help you stay healthy, and help to manage your care. Your primary care doctor can refer you to specialists if you need them. Learn how to choose one…
It’s not uncommon to assume that your physician’s recommended cancer treatment must begin immediately. You’re probably feeling anxious and want treatment to start right away. You want to rid your body of this cancer as soon as possible. However, it is important to know that in most cases, there is time to research the treatment options available to you.
Caregiving for a friend or loved one can be a life-changing experience on many levels. It may mean putting your own life on hold and it may become all-consuming. It might bring joy and quality time with your loved one, or it may bring heartache and despair at the course of events. Studies show that women are the majority of caregivers in this country, often caring for an aging parent and small children at the same time.
Undergoing treatment for a serious illness is emotionally draining, expensive, uncertain, and it will almost surely turn your life upside down. Chances are that you will face obstacles and need assistance. Whether that help comes in the form of finding medical information, financial assistance, or emotional support, it’s important to know where you can receive trusted information and guidance.