Patient Advocacy

Patient Advocates are normally healthcare professionals, like nurses, who are working to help patients manage and navigate their healthcare system. Patient Navigators are normally patient advocate staff of a healthcare system like a hospital system or primary practice on behalf of patients in that system. Patient Advocates are found both as staff and contracted independently by patients to work for them. Patient Advisors come from the community as patients or former patients, family members or caregivers who have experiences to share from the patient side with healthcare personal management. They are more like “coaches” and information brokers to help both patients and healthcare professionals communicate and work together better.

“Patient Advocate (is) A person who helps guide a patient through the healthcare system. This includes help going through the screening, diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up of a medical condition, such as cancer. A patient advocate helps patients communicate with their healthcare providers so they get the information they need to make decisions about their health care. Patient advocates may also help patients set up appointments for doctor visits and medical tests and get financial, legal, and social support. They may also work with insurance companies, employers, case managers, lawyers, and others who may have an effect on a patient’s healthcare needs. Also called patient navigator.” (>NCI Dictionary of Cancer Terms)

>Search the cancer page for patient advocates (search for “advoca”)

“Healthcare Advocacy” shall mean a Healthcare Advocate providing services including, but not limited to, assisting clients to make informed choices regarding available options and resources within the healthcare system, working with clients at all “levels of care” in the healthcare system, ensuring that people understood diagnoses and procedures, assisting in considering alternate treatment options, clarification of personal values as they relate to medical treatments, coordination of medical services, case management, discharge planning, arrangement of community-based services, assisting with complex medical decision-making, helping arrange second opinions and securing services from other medical systems, and advocating for clients with insurance systems and healthcare providers. Healthcare Advocacy shall not include: (1) giving second opinions; or (2) direct, hands-on medical care of any type, including, but not limited to, physical exams, blood draws, wound care, and surgical procedures.
> Find an Advocate 

Patient Advocate FoundationProfessional case managers at PAF work with the mission to identify and reduce the challenges that individuals like yourself are having when seeking care for their disease. Each team member strives to make a difference in the lives of every patient we serve, to allow more time to focus on medical recovery, to reduce everyday stress compounded by insurance frustration and mishaps, and to ensure that financial pressures do not compromise quality care. Working alongside patients or their loved ones, we gladly take the lead on some of the most complex healthcare challenges and bring decades of collective experience to the problem.

Just like on the first day we opened our doors, PAF’s case management services are provided at no cost to patients in need. In fact, we regularly work with caregivers, family members or medical professionals that reach out to our team on behalf of a patient who could benefit from our assistance.
>Find a Case Manager
PAF Patient Education Topics

Patients Rising is a national 501c3 organization based in Washington, DC. We’re a patient rights nonprofit that helps patients overcome barriers to access.
You can ask us a question and we’ll get you an answer or point you in the right direction.
>Patients Rising Navigator Website
>How to Choose a Patient Advocate

>Who Provides Patient and Health Advocacy?
>Services Offered by Private Health and Patient Advocates