Adding an independent patient advocate to your health care team
When you have health problems requiring medical treatment and interventions, or you become acutely unwell and require hospitalisation, you hope that you will get excellent care. You trust that your health management will not itself be a source of stress, confusion, unnecessary expense or conflict. You want to be offered all the treatment options, to be given adequate, understandable information upon which to make informed decisions and to feel that you are treated with respect and dignity. You need to know your privacy is assured and your personal wishes about care are acknowledged. However, when you are unwell, you may not be able to fend for yourself and you may benefit from expert support and advocacy.
Health management can involve confronting and overwhelming diagnoses, multiple healthcare providers and several facilities.
If you find yourself experiencing any of the following, healthcare outcomes will likely suffer:
-Confusion or anxiety about a medical condition or treatment
-Problems navigating the health system or accessing treatment
-Brief/unco-ordinated contact with doctors or other providers
-Communication difficulties with or between doctors or other providers
-Poor quality healthcare
-Denial of rights regarding your (or someone else's) healthcare
-Problems amongst family members about how best to deal with the interests of a loved one
-The tyranny of time/distance-when you are too far from someone or too busy to effectively support them
-The declining health and functionality of an aged relative. respite care Sydney
How does a patient advocate work?
WE SUPPORT & ADVOCATE FOR YOU ACROSS ALL AREAS OF HEALTH CARE:
-acute, chronic and critical health problems
-advanced case management
-disability care and services
-monitoring and collaboration with hospital and medical care
-supervision of the transition from hospital to home or nursing home
-support for a client's age related health problems and activities of daily living needs
-support for people confronting health issues related to genetic disorders.
-formulation, collation and sharing of healthcare documentation
-respite care when the family needs a holiday or support
-navigating and submitting a hospital complaint
Problems with standards and access
When the care standards of a provider or institution is causing concern, or access to care is being denied, we can help. Through advocacy, collaboration, negotiation or intervention, we can ensure that patients receive the care they need to achieve optimal health outcomes.
Informed consent & health literacy
A Patient Advocate will assist you to be informed and confident about the decisions you need to make and will assist you to achieve the best possible health outcomes. This involves helping a patient understand a diagnosis and the treatment and options. Where you would like reassurance about a diagnosis, we source and arrange a second opinion.
Knowing where and who to go to in the health system and understanding the language and culture is known as health literacy. In Australia, more than 60% of patients lack the level of health literacy necessary to effectively achieve the best outcomes from their health management. This results in stress, wasted money, delayed and poor treatment options and early admission to nursing homes. respite care Sydney
We collate and co-ordinate your health management & records.
How does an independent patient advocate support you?
-Your advocate will attend medical appointments and complex medical tests with you and navigate/translate what you are being told.
-We specialise in tele conferencing meaning we can "attend" appointments with your providers and carers via smartphone: cheaper, more spontaneous and flexible.
-In an emergency your advocate will attend a hospital or A&E department to assist you and your family through an acute event and help you to make informed decisions about treatment choices. We understand the language and culture of hospitals and can ensure that your treatment is timely and appropriate.
-A health trained patient advocate asks the important questions you may not know to ask. We collaborate with your providers so they are all in the loop regarding your condition, your treatments and your wishes.
-We provide you with written reports of all meetings we attend and (with your permission) circulate these to all your providers. This advocacy means everyone is on the same page.
-A patient advocate will help you to get the appropriate documentation in place that guides medical care in an emergency or at the end of your life.
- If you are concerned about the standard of your care we will arrange for it to be reviewed, including obtaining a second opinion where appropriate
-Where your care has been substandard or you have experienced poor outcomes we will guide and support you through the hospital complaint process.
Dorothy & Kay are both healthcare professionals with decades of experience in the aged and healthcare systems in NSW. We are qualified patient advocates and draw on our experience, communication skills, networks and commitment to get results for our clients. We do not provide nursing or medical care. Please enquire about our fees during your initial telephone enquiry.
* This website is the marketing platform for two Sydney based patient advocates who work as sole traders in separate businesses with individual ABNs*. Each is a qualified health professional, has completed Patient Advocate training and has individual Professional Indemnity Insurance.