… and Now the New York Times

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… and Now the New York Times

Over the years I’ve been asked this so many times – when do I think health and patient advocacy as a well-known profession will “arrive?”  As if there should be some sort of date on which a switch is flipped and the world begins to recognize, then hire independent advocates to help them navigate the healthcare system. Truth is, I’ve been expecting that tipping point for years. But (true confession) the evolution has been slower than I anticipated. Despite my 30+ years of business experience, working with every size business in every area of business imaginable, my crystal ball is still somewhat tarnished and my prediction abilities remain challenged. The answer remains:  I just don’t know. It has been growing steadily. The opportunities are apparent every day!  But… yes, it has been slower than I thought it would be. So many advocates, frustrated because the profession isn’t more mainstream, and because their phones don’t begin ringing off their hooks the moment they hang out their shingles, ask me “Why can’t the Alliance make it happen?  Just do a lot of big promotion!  Why aren’t you pushing advocacy in national press?  Or doing lots of google advertising? or?” They ask me for two reasons:  first, because they don’t want to do marketing themselves – they want someone else to do it for them. (Don’t we all!) And second, because they don’t understand the nature of marketing well enough to understand why a big national promotional outreach doesn’t help THEM. At least it doesn’t by itself without some work on their part to make it happen. Now we have the opportunity to test that! Just out a few days ago, an excellent overview of health and patient advocacy and navigation was published in the New York Times. Now, the NYT is, arguably, one of THE most influential news publications in the United States, and possibly the world (geesh, these days you really can’t call it simply a “newspaper”). The bulk of its readership is no where near New York – it’s everywhere. Talk about big press! The article is titled, Patient Advocates…

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