Educate patiently, advocate passionately, and inspire consistently. Do what you can, where you are, with what you have, and realize if you want something new, you have to stop doing something old. ~Anonymous
What Is A Medical Advocacy Consultant for Healthcare Providers?
In our organization, a Medical Advocacy Consultant is a person that understands that the provider may not have the time or resources to keep up on current data and reports of the newest developments for various types of care for their patient.
The Consultant can help healthcare providers/medical case managers to think outside the box by researching various articles, participate in web-crawling for pertinent information to their request, explore current care options, acquire additional resources, studies, or reports in various formats that the provider may not have time to research or procure on their own. The Consultant assists the provider to be able to make their own informed decisions by presenting the information found to the provider.
The provider ultimately is responsible to make the best decision for their patient, based on their own education, experience, and method of treatment/care. The provider is solely responsible for exploring, reviewing, and making an informed decision about the potential usefulness of any procured information presented.
What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
What Is A Medical Advocacy Consultant for Clients or Client Caregivers?
In our organization A Medical Advocacy Consultant for a client or client caregiver, is a person who provides dedicated guidance and help to the client, or caregivers who may be looking to develop self-advocacy skills, assist client with finding resources or providers for their specific needs, and receive assistance with information about accessing those resources. The Consultant helps find creative solutions to patient barriers, offers candid communication, and virtual support while utilizing creative thinking skills to help their client with a variety of choices. These choices ultimately are the responsibility of the Client or the Client Caregiver to follow through on and explore further.
A Medical Advocacy Consultant in our organization is a person that gathers and analyzes information, does research to support the requested support needed, draws conclusions and presents findings in the form of recommendations to their clients, and educates the clients about their rights within the health care system (not to be confused with legal advice). A Medical Advocacy Consultant employs great listening skills to help find possible solutions to client concerns and assists the client or caregiver with a plan to bring issues to the attention of providers in a variety of formats that meet the needs of the client and or Client Caregiver.
The Consultant is a person that helps the client navigate preparing for successful appointments with their providers by developing a plan. This plan may include
- develop prepared questions/documents to assist in the focus of that particular appointment
- assist with accessing resources for various in their local community and online
- enabling the client to make more informed decisions that lead to better health results
- identify values and belief systems to assist in self-advocacy and provide support while either the client or caregivers self-navigate
- encourage effective communication with healthcare providers to obtain the best results possible and achieve outcomes that are realistically possible
- The healthcare providers are often busy and have a hard time providing the amount of information necessary during a short appointment for their patient to truly understand their care and conditions. The Consultant may do research into the client’s medical conditions and treatments to supplement the information the doctors provide, so the client and their families have a better idea of the details behind the prognosis and treatment recommendations brought up by their healthcare provider.
I learned a long time ago the wisest thing I could do is be on my own side, be an advocate for myself and others like me. ~Maya Angelou
What is the difference between a Medical Advocacy Consultant, a Doctor, and a Medical Case Manager?
There are a LOT of differences. They should not be confused or seen as similar roles, because they are not. Though the common goal for both the Consultant and Doctor is the well being of the patient – the Medical Advocacy Consultant does not treat, diagnose, prescribe, conduct surgeries, offer medical advice, or legal advice.
A doctor is someone who is experienced and certified to practice medicine to help maintain or restore physical and mental health. A Doctor is specially trained to diagnose, treat, and care for a patient’s well-being. Doctors meet and talk with patients and caregivers to diagnose, manage and treat illnesses and injuries. A Doctor is also qualified to prescribe medications and perform minor medical procedures and minor surgeries, and give specific medical advice. Essentially, Doctors care for the general health of their patients.
A Medical Case Manager is involved in working with healthcare professionals and others in the community to assess patients’ health and oversee plans to manage their conditions and progress. Duties can include planning how to successfully place or discharge patients, along with performing frequent reviews of their cases. Registered nurses and licensed medical social workers often fill the role and may work in a variety of clinical and community settings. They can also help determine how long a patient must stay as an inpatient before moving to an outpatient or home health care basis.
The Medical Advocacy Consultant does not manage the health of patients, nor do they have patients. Medical Advocacy Consultants are not necessarily licensed healthcare providers (though some may have prior medical experience that assist them in locating additional resources). They provide tools and strategies for the client or caregiver to complement their relationship with their Providers; strategies to self-advocate for their own general health, or that of the client being cared for; and support the client’s goals for self-advocacy while respecting their human dignity and confidentiality.
Healthy is an outfit that looks differently on everybody. ~ Anonymous
What does it cost to use the services of a Medical Advocacy Consultant?
Pricing varies based on the type of service needed and the complexity of the need. Each service will cost something different to accomplish, mostly as a function of the time it takes to accomplish it. We are always happy to discuss your specific requests with you.
If you’re interested in hiring us as a Medical Advocacy Consultant, please EMAIL US to evaluate your request.