FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
My healthcare facility of choice has given me a patient navigator/advocate. Why should I hire you?
Hospitals and insurance companies often hire patient advocates/navigators. These patient advocates work for the health plan and or hospital and although they serve a valuable purpose and assist patient they are limited in what they can and will do for you. For example, they:
- Won’t accompany their member to a physician office visit or visit them in the hospital.
- Won’t refer a complicated case to another facility or to a physician who is not in their network.
- Won’t help their member select a physician, arrange for a second opinion or expedite appointments and diagnostic tests.
- Won’t serve as a communication resource for family and friends.
- Won’t do in-depth research to assist their member in selecting a treatment option.
How can I benefit from a patient advocate?
A private patient advocate works for you, not a hospital or health insurance company or other third party. An advocate works to eliminate barriers by helping make sense of the healthcare system as well as enhancing communication and coordination so you can make informed decisions.
What type of patients do you help?
- Patients needing help understanding and navigating the system
- Patients undergoing treatment who are too ill or overwhelmed to handle all the details
- Patients who need help finding a specialist, getting a second opinion, researching treatment options
- Patients and families who need help researching housing options that offer more care and services
- Out of town family who need help managing the care of an aging parent long distance.
- Patients with complex and/or serious medical diagnoses such as cancer
Can you help with aging parents?
Yes, we have a great deal of experience with seniors and elderly patients and understand their unique challenges. We can arrange for services in the home or research the most appropriate facility to match the needs and unique personality of the person.
Do you accept commissions or placement fees from Senior Living Communities?
No, Patient Advocates Lancaster does not receive or accept commissions from any outside product or service providers including senior living communities. We work for you. This is part of our Code of Conduct and Professional Standards.
Do you attend appointments with patients?
We are happy to attend appointments with you or a family member. We will also work with you to prepare a list of questions and concerns before each appointment to address with your doctor. If you’d like, we will send a list of important information and questions that you should ask at every visit.
What if my parent or loved one has to go to the Emergency Room before I can get to town?
We are available to accompany or meet a patient at any local hospital including Lancaster General Hospital, Lancaster Regional Medical Center, Heart of Lancaster Regional Medical Center, and Ephrata Hospital. We will reassure your parent or loved one and act as your eyes and ears until you arrive. We will ask questions, take notes and communicate with you or others regarding your loved ones status and any decisions that need to be made. Read Brenda’s testimonial.
Do I have to sign a lengthy contract? What if I only need help for a short time?
We work with each client on an individual basis and never charge for work we don’t do. We don’t require a minimum number of hours. Each client’s needs are different and we will work with you to determine what best meets your needs. We also understand that situations change and more or less help may be needed. We will provide a written estimate for your approval prior to providing services.
What if my family member needs help outside regular hours?
One of the benefits of working with a private patient advocate is that we are not just available 9-5. We work for you and are available evenings and weekends as well.
The bills and insurance paperwork are overwhelming. Can you help make sure my insurance is paying the correct amount?
We can review your bills and make sure you are receiving the maximum reimbursement as well as making sure hospital bills are accurate. We can also file appeals for claims that are denied.
Can you help patients and families who have a serious disease?
We understand that serious diagnoses often come with increased needs because the patient may be too overwhelmed, tired, or ill to make appointments, handle bills, research treatment options or do things for themselves. We are able to assist with anything you are unable to do so you can focus on healing.