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Part II: The Dirty Dozen Skills, Abilities, and Attributes of Successful Health and Patient Advocates and Care Managers
Yes, Part II, as promised in our first installment last week when we began with the first four attributes of successful advocates. Find Part I of the Dirty Dozen. Which of these describe you and your abilities? Which of them don’t? Where do you go from here? Do your own assessment! Part II: Abilities of Success Health/Patient Advocates and Care Managers 5. Health and patient advocates and care managers have an intimate understanding of the healthcare system. Important – I do not mean you must understand medicine. In fact, you really don’t need to understand medicine – as in diagnosis or treatment – to be successful. That’s why you don’t need to be a doctor or nurse or have another clinical background to build a successful advocacy practice. Successful advocacy is about understanding THE SYSTEM, not medicine. You must understand how to work the system to get your client what she needs. That may mean you know the least expensive MRI locations, or it may mean you know how to get an appointment with Dr. Specialist. It may mean you know how to work with insurance reps to get a claim approved, or it may mean you know how to find better pricing for Mrs. Smith’s prescription drugs. Maybe you need how to access a hospital’s chargemaster, or line up DRGs, CPTs, and RVUs. The best advocates understand that the answer to the most vexing of situations their clients encounter can usually be solved by following the money, then creating an alternative – even if that alternative requires making a promise or a threat to whatever barrier stands in the way. (See Part I: Assertiveness and Chutzpah). Read more: Goldilocks, Dad, and Finding Care That’s Just Right Read more: What Health Advocacy Is, What It Isn’t, and Why Most of It Can’t Be Taught Notice that none of those things are medical. However, that does take us to… 6. Successful advocates know that they might not “know”. Knowing one’s limits is such an important ability that it actually affects all aspects of our work, whether the work is directly…