In these difficult times where healthcare is at a cross roads and massive doctor shortages are predicted to occur in the next few years, the health and patient advocate takes up the slack.

Unlike the family physician of yesteryear, our doctors don’t always coordinate our care among all the specialists that have examined us.  It seems that doctors are in a hurry and shove us out the door.  Only when we get home do we think of all the questions that we need to ask.  When confused, don’t understand the medication or instructions you have been given or need someone to connect the dots, a patient advocate can be a godsend.  This person will research the treatment options or differential diagnosis that you need and may open doors to specialists that you may not have had access to on your own.

Private advocates work directly for you, not the hospital or insurance company (although they have their own and allegiance to their employers). Although insurance coverages and Medicare do not pay for the services of a patient/health advocate, it is definitely buy blue ventolin inhaler worth your while.  After all, not taking the medicine you have been prescribed through lack of understanding and overdosing on it or getting untoward side effects is much more costly in the long run.

Though it may not be easy to find an advocate in your area, there are two sites with directories that you can check out:

  • Advoconnection- which has a list of the types of advocates, the services they render and the location as well as contact information
  • NAHAC- National ASsociation of Health Advocacy Consultants- use of this site for referrals is free

Prepare a list of questions for interviewing the advocate that you are considering:

  • What is your training or background?
  • Have you performed these services before?
  • What will the charge be?
  • Are you available now or is there a waiting list?
  • How long do you anticipate I will need your services?

Knowing what to expect and getting the help you need will help you promote your health and give you peace of mind at the same time.

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