Did You Know That Your Local Hospital Has a Patient Advocate There to Help You?
March 10, 2022
While we may look at them as sources of medical relief and treatment, hospitals are still businesses that can fall victim to the same kind of issues companies all across the world are facing. One such issue is in regards to customer service. However, unlike retail where problems may have a simple solution or directive to follow, situations inside hospitals are often treated with a lot more sensitivity.
The trained professionals who handle patient issues are called patient advocates and though you may have heard of them before, you may not know how to access their services.
What Kinds of Situations Can Patient Advocates Help With?
A patient advocate does exactly how they sound: they advocate on your and your family’s behalf during times of difficulty. And no situation has been more difficult than navigating the COVID-19 pandemic. More than two years into the pandemic and many hospitals across the country are still limiting the number of guests each patient can have, and even at what time. While this may not seem too different than traditional visiting hours, it poses a potential problem if a patient is in their last hours and multiple people need to visit at a time or if one family member refuses to leave their bedside.
The above example is just one of many situations a patient advocate may be able to help you with. Patient advocates have seen and done it all and they have most notably helped patients who may want to see their pets or assisted with a parent’s request to spend the night by their child’s bedside. In some cases, they may be able to reunite spouses who are currently admitted to different hospitals or help coordinate special virtual events for a patient who is unable to leave the facility.
Whatever it is, patient advocates are there to resolve the patient or their family’s issues in regards to their care and special requests. If you have a special request or need help arranging transport, home care, or have questions about visitation, a patient advocate can help. While they may still be limited in regards to how much they can help you due to hospital rules and/or by the law, they are meant to be in your corner to help ease your concerns while a loved one is in the hospital receiving care.
How to Find Your Local Hospital Patient Advocate
Depending on where you’re located, your patient advocate may also be referred to as a patient representative, social worker, or patient liaison. If your loved one is in the hospital and you need the help of the facility’s patient advocate, you should be able to call up and ask for them directly through the hospital operator. Or, you can ask your loved one’s nurse or treatment team for the information, as they should be able to help you.
You can also obtain your own independent patient advocate through a service called the AdvoConnection Directory. This independent service connects you to hundreds of private patient advocates throughout the United States who can help you advocate for your family’s rights, set up a second opinion, and even assist you with negotiating down some of your medical bills.
Independent patient advocates do cost money, which is the difference between using one on your own and the one the hospital provides, however, knowing where to turn for these services can give you peace of mind when you need it.
Contact A Medical Malpractice Attorney For A Consultation About Your Medical Malpractice Case In Pennsylvania
Were you or a loved one injured due to medical malpractice in Pennsylvania? Then you need to talk to an experienced medical malpractice lawyer as soon as possible for guidance on how to proceed. The Pittsburgh emergency room error attorneys at Goodrich & Geist, P.C. are prepared to assist you with your legal claim. We represent victims of negligent surgeons, doctors, nurses, and pharmacists in Pittsburgh and the surrounding Western PA counties. Call us today at (412) 766-1455 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a consultation. Our main office is located at 3634 California Ave., Pittsburgh, PA 15212. Home visits can be arranged in certain situations.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.