Health Advocacy ServicesAny major illness can feel overwhelming. I’m here when there’s nowhere else for you to turn.
As an independent health advocate, I offer a myriad of health advocacy services in San Francisco and beyond. From gaining a better understanding of your diagnosis to helping you select the treatment best suited to your goals and guiding you through the process of purchasing a new health insurance plan. Please see below for a full list of my services.
I partner with you and your healthcare team as you navigate through the healthcare system. I assist you with planning for expected events and adapting to unanticipated circumstances, while keeping you and your family safe and calm when you need healthcare services most—during a health crisis.
Understanding a new diagnosis or treatment
I facilitate, strengthen, and improve the quality of communication between you and your healthcare team. By initiating an open and trusting exchange, you can more comfortably discuss sensitive issues; relieve your worry; increase your understanding of your diagnosis, treatment options, and prognosis; and take a more active role in your care. Studies have shown that honest discussion between you and your providers may even improve your treatment outcomes.
Staying safe in the hospital
People go to hospitals to get well; unfortunately, being hospitalized can also be risky. In fact, an estimated 210,000 to 440,000 hospital patients each year suffer some type of preventable harm that contributes to their death. Because of these alarming numbers, I will monitor your scheduled procedures and medications, engage with medical providers who visit your bedside, and observe and inquire about safety measures being used to prevent errors, infections, falls, and other potential impediments to your recovery.
When you’re out of treatment options and unsure where to turn next
There are always options and abundant resources to improve you or your loved one’s quality of life, even if you have a chronic or acute illness. Let me introduce you to nationally renowned providers and cutting-edge organizations, arrange free or low-cost second opinions, conduct research on novel therapies, identify cost-saving strategies, and identify clinical trials for which you might be eligible.
Help finding the right doctor
If you’ve lost confidence in your providers of if your current physician is ill-suited to meet your needs and treatment goals, I can help you find a better match and transfer your care. This includes helping you access a team of providers with the expertise and experience you seek for your health and peace of mind.
Your advance directive
An advance directive is a legal document that guides you in initiating conversations with your loved ones to ensure that your end-of-life care aligns with your needs, values, and goals. Without this critical document in place, you may miss the opportunity to think through all the quality-of-life issues that matter most to you. I can help you prepare this form before you may need it.
Help handling a loved one’s care
Whether you’re across town or across the country, I understand that managing a loved one’s care extends far beyond meeting their physical needs. I can help family caregivers persuade a loved one to seek treatment, locate a well-respected provider in an unfamiliar city, and oversee care from a distance. My experience mediating challenging family dynamics can improve communication that has become stuck, especially when old conflicts are magnified by your loved one’s illness.
Time to purchase new health insurance
Choosing a health plan is never easy, but it’s more difficult when you or a loved one is ill. Whether you’re selecting employer-sponsored coverage, purchasing a plan through the Covered California marketplace, or you’re a Medicare beneficiary, I’ll help you draw meaningful comparisons among your options and choose wisely.
Know your patient rights
Privacy and self-determination are central to your rights as a patient. Perhaps you’re concerned about accessing and correcting your medical records; or consenting to, refusing, or terminating treatment. As your health advocate, I can teach you how to utilize state and federal protections that safeguard your rights to maximum benefit.
Insurer declines to cover a provider, procedure, or prescription
If the treatment recommended by your healthcare provider is denied by your insurance, don’t worry. I’ll be at your side to tenaciously and expertly guide you through the appeals process and ensure that you receive the care to which you’re entitled. I’ll confirm through your providers that you’ll receive evidence-based healthcare based on current diagnostic procedures, the known benefits and harms of different treatments and practices, and the expected course of your illness.