It is common for medical facilities to provide customer service in the form of an employee they refer to as a patient advocate. When a patient or a member of his or her family has questions about their treatment or how to pay for it, they may contact this individual.
Health/Patient Advocacy Training (US)
Some of these hospital patient advocates have received formal Health/Patient Advocacy (US) training, but the majority do not.
American Hospital Association (AHA)
Members of the Society for Healthcare Consumer Advocacy are generally members of the American Hospital Association (AHA) because of their association with the AHA (HPOE).
It is common for patients to look for their aid when they are upset or need support. It can be anything from getting a ride back home to understanding their medical costs.
Patient Advocate – An Unreliable Ally
Empowered patients, on the other hand, know that the hospital’s patient advocate is compensated for his or her services. This means that her loyalty is to the hospital, making her an unreliable ally in trying times.
Patient advocates in the form of healthcare assistants, like those in for-profit advocacy groups get started on the path to a real career helping patients.
Many patient advocates have worked as “case managers” before they became patient advocates. Since the early days of case management’s origins in social work, these patient advocates have been helping to coordinate medical treatment for their clients. Because they are offered employment directly by the patient, they are trustworthy.
In recent years, however, there has been a shift in the way these professionals build their service lists. Some of these decision-makers are former doctors, nurses, or other healthcare professionals who have received specialized training in this area.
Services of Patient Advocate
In some cases, other people are good at organizing and can help with transportation or bill tracking and payment. Nonetheless, some help elderly patients transition into assisted living and nursing homes.
According to Christina DiArcangelo, it’s important to know what you can do and where you can go.
Which is why, Christina DiArcangelo started Affinity Patient Advocacy. Like so many, Affinity Patient Advocacy’s Founder Christina DiArcangelo counts herself as one of the countless lives unfortunately touched by cancer. As her father taught her from a very early age, though, Christina vowed to fight with all that they had to overcome this dreaded diagnosis.
The birth of Affinity Patient Advocacy occurred with Albert J. DiArcangelo Sr.’s diagnosis of Stage 4 Liver, Lung and Stomach Cancers on August 28, 2015. Understandably distraught over the diagnosis, Christina bravely sprang to action, working very closely with his medical team on his treatment plan, coordinating wellness visits, working on clinical research, and organizing medical and social services within her own vast network of medical professionals. Unfortunately, Mr. DiArcangelo lost his courageous battle with cancer on October 13, 2015.
While this news was devastating to the DiArcangelo family, Christina realized a greater purpose in her family’s experience to help others. Christina realized that there is no more important aspect of the treatment process than a support system to advocate for all of the patients needs and to support their family through the difficult times ahead.
It was for this reason that Affinity Patient Advocacy first started in September 2015. Christina realized that every patient and family deserves to have an advocate to help them navigate the complexities that lay ahead. Many do not have the expertise and background that Christina has, and it is for that reason that Affinity Patient Advocacy’s purpose is to ensure that all receive the fair treatment, education and services they deserve.