For healthcare providers like nurses, their first job is to deliver quality care. However, there is more to quality care than knowing disease. They also act as patient navigators and help patients to make the right decision regarding their health. The healthcare system is too vast, as well as becoming too complex to understand. The healthcare advocate helps patients and their families to navigate through the complex healthcare system and manages all the legal aspects of patient treatment.
For patients and their families, it can be a bit daunting to understand medical jargon and go through medical bills so a patient navigator can help them efficiently. Nursing has direct interaction with the patients as well as they know all about medical terms. Consequently, they are ideal for the position of a patient advocate. When nurses successfully advocate for their patients, there are chances of promoting their work to the healing process.
Changing Role of Patient Advocate
In other words, patient advocacy is the safeguarding, encouragement, optimization of health and capabilities, preventing illness and injury, eradicating suffering through the diagnosis and treatment of human response. It involves guiding the care of patients, families, communities, and families. In the many complex medical conditions, patients and their families can get confused. An experienced patient advocate can assist the patient and their family through the unfamiliar system as well as communicate with doctors efficiently.
In addition to that, they also educate patients about the procedure and tests. They know about how culture and character can affect the patient’s insight while adhering to protection laws. Patient advocate integrates all aspects of patient care and also make sure that they don’t have any issues unresolved.
Their main goal is to preserve human dignity and drive positive outcomes from any medical condition.
Revolution of Healthcare System
The medical healthcare system is changing rapidly, both in terms of technology advancement and methods of treatments and diagnosis. Consequently, changes in regulations related to the delivery of health care and health service are also rapid. However, patient advocates are adept in their skills, and they know their stuff. They advocate for patients with compassion, respect, and dignity.
Mostly, nurses enter the profession of patient advocates because they have the desire to help. The longing to assist and manage the suffering is an essential part of being in this profession. And this is required at emotional, physical, and psychological levels.
Advocates help their patients to make the right decision about their treatment and health. If the patient is alert, nurses can take responsibility, and they have to take their decision seriously. The patient advocate has the authority to offer information to the patient so that they can make an informed decision. Patient advocacy involves making the patient’s priority. However, there are severe medical conditions. For example, if the patient is suffering from a terminal illness, a family member may want more facilities for their loved one.
However, the patient only wants comfort measures and to meet his loved ones. In that case, patient advocates have to meet all the requirements of the patient. Advocacy is all about standing for the rights of the patients and their families. However, other providers have gone far beyond that traditional scope, that restricts advocates from working on the patient behalf to resolve issues which involve billing concerns, clearing doubt about health insurance, and helping address coverage dispute with other plans.
They play a vital role in medical decision making by assisting patients and their families with better treatment options. Today, patient navigators are more empowered with a high level of accountability and high resolution. Patient advocacy can occur at many different levels. In some cases, doctor advocates for individual patients by requesting timely diagnosis, tests, and easy access to the resources.
They may advocate at the regional level or for groups of patients. On the system level, doctors may advocate for a provincial medical association’s strategy to enhance healthcare overall. And on the global level, physicians support health-related environmental protection. The patient advocate should address the systematic problems of care and health services.
Today, patient advocacy has taken a massive array of dimensions. Protecting patients from illegal activity is only a part of patient advocacy. However, supporting the patient is a bigger goal.