When faced with a significant medical or care decision, having another set of eyes and ears on the situation can provide important, objective feedback that otherwise might go overlooked. Whether you need to sort through options, research alternatives, or simply benefit from the comfort of someone holding the situation with you, a skilled advocate can help you stay calm and focused, more than you might on your own. And while a family member can certainly accompany you to a medical appointment and take notes, sometimes it helps to have someone who while compassionate, is not emotionally involved.
How can an advocate help?
- Navigate the complexities of the healthcare system
- Understand your insurance and financial situation
- Ask the right questions – particularly in a medical crisis or a new diagnosis -- clarity and confidence from someone on your side can have a positive impact of your ability to sift through the information you have been given and move forward
- Hold the “big picture” for you and/or your family
What qualities might you look for in an advocate?
- Excellent communication skills
- Assertiveness (determined but always respectful)
- Passionate – someone who cares deeply about the client, the outcome, and patient rights in general
- Experience within the healthcare arena (not necessarily a medical professional but someone who has had personal knowledge of how to navigate among providers, facilitate fruitful conversations, first hand knowledge of the condition you are dealing with, etc)
- Knowledge of resources available to you or at the very least, is capable of researching those options for you
At Senior Care Authority, our Certified Senior Advisors can be your family’s advocate, whether you are making care decisions or working your way through a medical crisis. Someone walking beside you on a rugged and often tricky journey, can make all the difference in the world to your ability to stay calm.