How Can I Prevent Repeat Hospital Visits?

If you have symptoms that are not yet diagnosed, you may be led to repeated ER visits for symptoms of pain relief. You may need a specialized medical visit, but the wait is too long. Perhaps you saw a specialist, yet your symptoms were poorly addressed or your condition was undiagnosed? While a visit to the ER may temporarily relieve your symptoms, it is often a bandaid for the underlying issue, and not addressing the underlying root cause. Fortunately, we can help get you out of this cycle and prevent hospital readmissions.

What is a Private Patient Advocate?

Pathway Patient Advocates is a Private Patient Advocate company that is unbiased and is not affiliated with a specific health system or insurance company. We work for you to help navigate you through your health challenges. In addition, you never have to feel alone. 

At Pathway Patient Advocates, we can assist with many factors to help prevent repeated hospital visits. 

Medical records review

At Pathway Patient Advocates, we can review medical records to help you understand what has already been evaluated, diagnosed, excluded, and managed. Reviewing medical records also helps identify errors in care, and gaps in evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment. We can also help identify inaccurate documentation, which can then be submitted for redaction/ update.


Case Evaluation

At Pathway Patient Advocates, we can review your case and help identify things that may have not been considered; such as specialized testing, or consideration of applying for a clinical trial. 

Scheduling the right outpatient visit

Many times you may know of a specialist that you would like to see, however are having difficulty obtaining the appointment. This can be for a variety of reasons. Perhaps the specialist you are seeking is not covered by your insurance, or you cannot obtain a scheduled appointment. You may not know which specialist is right for your symptoms or condition. At Pathway Patient Advocates, we can help with this, including helping find the proper specialist as well as arranging the visit and adequately preparing for the visit. In addition, we can attend the visit as needed. 

Obtaining the necessary resources (medications, testing, procedures etc)

After you find a suitable plan of care for the right specialist, it is not uncommon to be faced with obstacles in obtaining the necessary resources. For example, your insurance may not cover the necessary medication. Or perhaps there is a medication shortage and alternative options are necessary. Necessary testing and procedures may not be available locally or lengthy wait times may be present. At Pathway Patient Advocates, we can help with all this, we are experienced with overcoming these challenges and are familiar with navigating the system.

Let us help you keep you out of the hospital. Find the proper assistance and medical care needed to achieve a better quality of life. Call 947-517-8395 for more details.

Are You a “Good Patient”?

I often hear this statement from new clients that I start working with.  I have concerns with my doctor but I don’t want to bring them up because “I want to be a good patient”. Working as a healthcare provider myself for 15 years, I was surprised when I first heard this in my first year working as a private patient advocate. Fast forward several years later, the statement has become all too frequently heard.

What exactly is considered a “Good Patient” and why do you need to be one? What are the benefits and disadvantages of being a good patient?

What is a “Good Patient”

There seems to be this stigma or widespread misconception that a “Good Patient”  possesses the following qualities and characteristics:

  • Never misses or questions reasons for appointments. Even if they are unsure why they are going to an appointment;
  • Fills and prescriptions and takes all medications, even when not being fully aware of the; reason for taking, potential interactions, side-effects, contraindications, or cost;
  • Agrees and follows all management and treatment plans despite knowing or understanding if their insurance will cover it or if there is a more cost-effective alternative;
  • NEVER asks questions during an appointment;
  • NEVER asks a question before an appointment;
  • NEVER asks questions after an appointment;
  • Doesn’t bother the office staff with questions or concerns;
  • Did I mention, NEVER askss questions; and
  • Never consider second bringing up seecond opinions, fearful of offending the doctor.

Why be a “Good” Patient Advocate?

So what are the perceived benefits of being a “good patient”? Many believe that being a good patient will lead to better patient care. There is a fear that if you are not a quote, “good patient”, then you will not receive the proper care. For example, many believe if they choose to get a second opinion, that their healthcare provider will be offended or upset and not want to treat them anymore. I have a current client who is undergoing treatment for a rare cancer. Recently his oncologist had called and said he was changing his chemotherapy drug. I asked my client, did the oncologist mention why he changed it or why he thinks this treatment may work better? My client responded, “ I can’t ask him that. He will think that I am questioning his judgment and expertise.”

We then discussed how it is very important to understand why you are getting certain treatment, and it is okay to ask questions.

These are valid concerns from a patient or family member’s perspective. However, the stigma of what a “good patient” is is not appropriate. It is so essential to build and maintain a trusting relationship with your healthcare providers and the rest of your care team. If you feel that your doctor or other healthcare provider is offended if you ask a question or even a second opinion, then perhaps that is not the best person to be part of your care team. 

You, as the patient, are also part of your care team. Therefore you do have the right to ask any questions and be involved. Taking control of your health will assist you with being more invested in your health and feeling more confident in your decisions, care, and management.

Redefining a “Good Patient” 

Let’s change the definition of what a good patient is. A good patient:

  • Becomes an active member of the care team;
  • Adequately prepares for medical appointments by writing down questions beforehand. This will save time for both you and your provider and make your visits more efficient and beneficial;
  • Always arrives to appointments on time;
  • Takes notes during appointments;
  • Maintains well-organized medical records;
  • Maintains a good understanding of their insurance coverage benefits;
  • Always asks questions for clarification or when new questions arise
  • Expresses worries or concerns with the healthcare team;
  • Feels confident communicating with office staff and medical providers; and
  • Is comfortable obtaining second opinions

Pathway Patient Advocates can assist you with getting the best out of your healthcare and making each interaction with your care team efficient. When you become active in your healthcare experience, you tend to understand things a whole lot better!

Are You Properly Invested in Your Health?

Have you taken the steps needed to get out of this rut and actually get answers? Proper testing? Proper diagnosis? Proper management? Has your quality of life improved? If not, make the change now. 

Working with a private patient advocate can help you finally get answers to your questions and move forward with your health journey.

How can a Private patient advocate help accomplish this?

  1. Personalized Plan: Create a personalized step-by-step plan that is easy to follow to help achieve your goals whatever they may be.
  1. Carry out the plan. For me this starts with reviewing medical records to familiarize myself with details, look for errors and gaps in care. Having a detailed well informed. Basis to start with will help you and your advocate work most efficiently.  This varies from person to person. For example, your plan may include having additional specialized testing undertaken. Finding a specialized second opinion. Finding cost-effective management pains including mediation coverage and much more. 
  1. Advocating for you along the way. Even though a nice plan is set, I always recommend planning for the unexpected. Roadblocks may be met that cause plan modification. You may develop new symptoms during the process of navigating your health. You may unexpectedly end up in the hospital. It’s such a great feeling to know your private patient is there for you along the way whatever unexpected occurs. 
  1. Staying on track: In addition to carrying the plan, it is equally as important to stay on track by keeping organized records, adequately communicating with your care team, and reviewing your progress through your journey. Often people forget to review their progress, however, this step is so essential. Reviewing your progress helps. Keep you on track see what is working what was less helpful and clarify the next steps. It also often highlights your accomplishments and how far you have come in your journey. 

Are you ready to finally get out of your health rut? Ready for a positive change? You deserve to be healthier, happier, more informed, have better care, and an improved quality of life. Make today the day you feel different tomorrow! 

Don’t let healthcare leave you feeling Defeated

In today’s current healthcare, regardless if you live in the United States of America Canada, or abroad, the healthcare system has lots of room for improvement. Oftentimes despite many efforts it may leave you feeling alone it may leave you feeling Alone deflated and defeated. Fortunately, it doesn’t have to feel this way. There are many ways that a private patient advocate can help so that you are not left as another casualty of the healthcare system. 

Starting off strong

Here is a scenario, you or your family have new symptoms, or perhaps find a “lump”. At first, you have a wave of fear. But that fear quickly turns into determination and you take off…You do your research, book your doctor appointment, and write down a list of questions. You are ready to tackle this new finding, whatever it may be…. 


This may or may not be you. And that’s okay, everyone is different and approaches things differently and wants a different level of involvement. 

Not getting anywhere

But sadly what often happens is that you get to your appointment, it is much shorter than you anticipated (other than perhaps the long wait in the waiting room), you get to maybe the first two questions, and you are given a non-detailed answer, perhaps feeling as “brushed-off” and by questions number 3 (if you get that far) you decide to just stop asking.  You feel your symptoms are minimized and your concerns are not validated. So you feel you have to play the role of what you sense you are the “good patient”. 

Now this of course is not always the case, but with today’s fast-paced life, it is quite frequently a reality.

 

Tired

So at this point, you are now emotionally and often physically tired, exhausted, and fatigued. Maybe you have had multiple visits, maybe you have researched, joined forums, and tried various home treatments. Maybe Google has provided you with TOO much information that you know you are not sleeping. Maybe you have no means to pay for more care. Unable to get the referral you need? Not sure What referral you need? Maybe not even sure WHAt a referral is? You’re not a doctor and even if you are, the process is not any easier to navigate. It is putting a mental strain on you and your loved ones. No insurance? Bad insurance? At this point, all that energy and determination you start with has vanished. Perhaps you are becoming depressed. Where do you go from here? What can you do? What energy do you have left to do it?

Private Patient Advocacy

While this is an all too common experienced process, it doesn’t have to be that way! An experienced private patient advocate can travel that journey with you. They can use their energy to get things done more efficiently and effectively so that you don’t have to use your energy. Whether you’re just starting this journey of the unknown or have been in it forever. Whether you are energetic or completely spent, it’s a good time to start working with a private patient advocate. Cancer? Aging? Rare condition? Undiagnosed? A private patient advocate can help. Currently healthy? Let a private patient advocate help keep you that way. 

Does any of this relate to you? If so, give me a call, and let’s chat more at (947) 517-8395

Elena Borrelli DMSC, MSPAC, BCPA

Founder of Pathway Patient Advocates LLC

Why is my Condition so Rare? What are my Options?

Rare conditions


Dealing with health issues is a challenge in itself. Having a rare medical condition adds additional levels of obstacles and disarray. In addition, you may feel that your questions and concerns are being ignored or disregarded. It is unfortunate that these challenges are shared by so many individuals dealing with rare conditions. It should be this way, and I am here to tell you it doesn’t have to be that way. Your experience navigating through a rare medical disorder can be improved with the help of a private patient advocate.  

private patient advocate is distinctly different from a complementary patient advocate offered by your health insurance company or hospital system.  Having an experienced private patient advocate with a medical degree offers you individualized and personalized guidance, having your best interest in mind. If you want to learn more about what makes a private patient advocate unique, read more here. 

There are several factors to consider when living with a rare health issue. Let’s discuss a few below.

Are your symptoms accurately diagnosed?


It is quite common for someone with a rare condition to have additional medical conditions. It is often hard to decipher what symptoms are a result of your rare diagnosis or perhaps another condition. This is one of the many reasons it is so essential to obtain second options and additional testing so that you truly understand what condition or conditions you have.  The first step in treating a problem is diagnosing it. A private patient advocate can help you find the right experts you need and proper testing options.  


Quality of life


Take a minute and consider your quality of life. Everyone’s definition of quality is different. Think about what a good quality of life means to you. What things are most important to you? What activities? What people? Defining what a good quality of life means to you, will help determine what goals to achieve in managing your condition. It may feel discouraging to think about your quality of life because, in the current state, your quality of life may not feel so great. Fortunately, there is a potential to change this for the better.


Treatment options


A private patient advocate can assist you with researching various treatment options to consider, as well as arranging access to treatment options. Remember, your condition may not be so rare to us. As a private patient advocate I have helped many clients with rare disorders, you may be surprised at how familiar we are with your condition. Even if we have not had a prior case with your specific medical condition, our experience with working with similar rare conditions can help us navigate along your journey to managing yours.

We are here for you, even when it feels like no one else is listening. (947) 517-8395.
https://pathwaypa.com/

Is your Health a Mess? Don’t know where to Start?… We do!

Does it feel like your health has gotten out of control? You try to manage one symptom and the other symptoms pop up. Or perhaps you were too depressed or overwhelmed to really focus on getting things fixed. Do you now feel more tired and don’t have the energy to participate in things that you used to? Does it feel too big of a problem to handle? Do you want to get better care and more testing, but are concerned about insurance costs? Or maybe you don’t have insurance. TAKE A DEEP BREATH…. We know where to start. Let us help!

Step 1

Start by giving us a call (or email). Let us listen and hear all about your problems. Not only does it feel good to let it out and ask an expert for help, but we know what to do to get things better. Tell us your wish list and we will put together a plan to make it happen. Don’t hold back – tell us what you want your quality of life to be, even if it seems so far from where you currently are.

Step 2

We will create a personal plan just for you. A stepwise plan that will address all your challenges and healthcare concerns – Both medical and financial. A plan that has achievable steps. One that can be referred back to and checked to see how work toward the plan is making progress toward achieving your goals.

Step 3

Get into action. Planning is essential, but planning goes nowhere if action is not taken.  Let us carry out the plan and walk with you throughout the often scary journey to finding that new diagnosis, or treatment plan, whatever it may be. We are here for you. Let a private patient advocate use the expertise and experience to check things off your plan and do the long calls, research, planning, and navigating. 

Step 4

The next step is to review, revise, and act on the revised plan so that the process can continue to improve your quality of life and reach your goals. Your goals may change and you may have new ones as you get better, stronger, and more focused…and that ok, it’s actually a good thing.

Let a private patient advocate give you reassurance, clarity, and a plan to get you on the right path and carry out the plan. 

Let’s talk today to get started (947) 517-8395

What is TeleAdvocacy, and How Can it Help?

What is TeleAdvocacy?

TeleAdvocacy is patient advocacy from a distance; such as via a technology platform, such as telephone, video visits, emails, and text messaging. TeleAdvocacy provides the opportunity to have an experienced patient advocate help you even if they are not demographically close to you. 

How Can A Private Patient Advocate Advocate for Me without Physically Being There?

I have been offering Teleadvocacy since 2018, well before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. A private patient advocate can offer the assistance virtually as if in person. I can review medical records, communicate with your doctors and other members of the healthcare team, and advocate for you virtually. If you need in-home assistance or assistance with driving to appointments, I can arrange an adequate person to assist with that. I have many adult children who ask me to advocate for their aging parents, and this can successfully be done via TeleAdvocacy.

What if I am not Technology savvy?

Many clients are concerned because they are not well-versed in technology such as video visits or even email. That is not a problem at all. I have many clients whose only access to technology is a basic telephone. Over the years, I have developed ways to simplify technology needs for teleAdvocacy and avoid the process from feeling overwhelming to patients. Many clients are not willing to have someone physically enter their home, often their comfort zone; therefore TeleAdvocacy becomes a much more inviting option. 

What are the Cost Benefits?

Private patient advocates change based on the amount of time their service is needed. In-person advocacy incurs the charges of travel time such as driving, etc. TeleAdvocacy avoids these charges and also helps the advocate be more readily available to help you when needed.

TeleAdvocacy is a great tool that allows you to find an experienced private patient advocate who is just right for you and your situation.  If you would like to discuss how TeleAdvocacy would best fit your needs, please give me a call (947) 517-8395.

What is a Patient Advocate? Do I need one?

There are different definitions of the term “patient advocate”. It is a fairly new concept, and without knowing the different definitions, you can’t really understand why you need a patient advocate. In addition, a patient advocate is often called a health advocate, medical advocate, medical navigator, or professional advocate. There are three main definitions of the patient advocate.

What “patient advocate” is traditionally known as

In many states, a “designated patient advocate” is a person 18 years or older that is designed by the patient, who is given authorization to exercise powers concerning care, custody, and medical or mental health treatment decisions for the individual making the patient advocate designation.

Knowing this definition, you may think I don’t need to hire a private patient advocate, I don’t want someone I don’t know making these decisions for me. Here is where it can be confusing because this is actually different from what many patient advocates do.

Private Patient Advocate

A private patient advocate, like Pathway Patient Advocates, is an unbiased individual who is not affiliated with a specific health system or insurance company. He or she is someone who works for you to help navigate you through your health challenges. In addition, with a private patient advocate you never have to feel alone. We can help with a variety of challenges including; new diagnoses, undiagnosed symptoms, rare disorders, cancer, elderly care management, medical billing, and insurance issues.

Such a patient advocate DOES NOT MAKE MEDICAL DECISIONS FOR YOU and is distinctly different from the commonly known legal term “designated patient advocate”.

So why specifically do you need a private patient advocate?

What Can a Private Patient Advocate Do For Me?

Medical Bills and Insurance issues

Approximately 85% of medical bills contain errors. You may be receiving bills or even collection notices. You may even be reluctant to get the medical care you need due to concerns about cost. Here’s where Pathway Patient Advocates can help: We can assist with reviewing medical bills, looking for errors, and submitting appeals. We can also provide Health Plan benefit education, correcting billing errors due to improper coding, as well as complete medical billing reviews and audits. Our billing and medical expertise can save you money and leave you feeling comfortable to get the medical care you need.

Navigating a New or Existing Medical Condition

We know that being sick is scary. Especially one that is life-altering such as cancer. We want you to know that multiple options are available and Pathway Patient Advocates can assist you in navigating your path to management and comfort.

For many, having a sick family member or loved one is emotionally exhausting and overwhelming. A patient advocate is here for you and your family to help you navigate the process. This includes resources such as coordination of care, second opinions, researching different treatment options, etc. You don’t have to travel the path alone.

Elderly Care support and Placement

As we age or develop different medical issues; we become less independent. Loss of dependence, whether minor or complete can be a difficult adjustment. There are many factors involved in choosing the best placement and care for yourself or a loved one. A Patient Advocate helps make that transition smooth and enjoyable.

These are just a few ways a patient advocate can help…

Many Health systems and Insurance Companies Offer a Complimentary Patient Advocate, Why Should I Hire a Private One?

While many hospitals do now offer patient advocates, they are more like customer service representatives. The patient advocate may refer you to the billing department or other areas in the hospital. They typically do not have the medical or billing knowledge or experience to help you in a way that a private patient advocate can.

A private patient advocate provides an experienced medical professional with unbiased suggestions and assistance to help navigate your path to the best possible care.

My Insurance Does Not Cover a Patient Advocate, Why Pay For The Extra Expense?…

An experienced private patient advocate can save you up to hundreds of thousands of dollars and help you attain the medical care you need in a more timely manner. This not only saves you money and time but also helps you achieve and maintain an improved quality of life.

You only have 1 life, so we recommend that you care for it well. With a healthy life, you have the opportunity to start or continue enjoying life; it is essential to take care of your health.

Not all Patient Advocates Are the Same

Each patient advocate has a different level of experience and education. Ask questions to make sure you feel comfortable with the patient advocate that you pick. Consider asking if they have experience with your specific situation. How long they have been practicing for, and what their educational background is. Your goal is to select an advocate who you can trust and feel confident that they are advocating for you.

The Pathway Patient Advocates Team includes both medical and billing experts. Our span of knowledge is equipped to assist you in any challenge of medicine that you face. Most important is our passion and dedication to helping you succeed and overcome these barriers. Our professional and personal experiences with challenges in healthcare have led us to develop Pathway Patient Advocates so that we can help people like. Dr. Borrelli, founder of Pathway Patient Advocates, is an experienced Board Certified Patient Advocate. She has over 25 years of experience working in the medical field. Cancer, rare disorders, and undiagnosed symptoms need intensive care management and expert care. Pathway Patient Advocates can help you attain just that. Dr. Borrelli and her team treat every client like a part of their family. Let us help you get the proper care that you deserve.

How can a Private Patient Advocate Help with your aging parent?

Trying to navigate and assist an aging parent can be an overwhelming task. Aside from trying to manage your busy lifestyle, you also are trying to adapt to the changes that your parents are experiencing both physically as well as emotionally. As a parent, you may feel a sense of guilt, because, despite your efforts, things are not going very smoothly. Oftentimes, this leads to tension in the relationship between the parent and the child. Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be that way. There are many ways that a private patient advocate can help smooth the transition and help your aging parent better adapt to their changing lifestyle, whatever that may be, and help achieve and maintain the quality of life that they are content with.


Reviewing Health and Medical Team

An experienced private patient advocate can review your parent(s) medical records to search for medical errors, gaps in care, and areas of concern.
It is surprising to most how often information is mistakenly documented in medical records and then repeatedly carried on throughout the chart. Electronic medical records have offered many advantages to healthcare, however, it also increases the ease of copying and pasting incorrect information. In the fast pace healthcare environment, these errors are often overlooked and not picked up by healthcare professionals.

Your parent may need a specialist for a specific condition or may benefit from a visit to their primary care provider for a new or lingering symptom. A private patient advocate can help identify that coordinate the necessary steps. We can help assess what may be missing from your parent’s medical team so that they have access to appropriate care to evaluate their symptoms and overall health.

Medication Management

As we age, often so does the number of daily medications taken. Polypharmacy, also known as taking many medications simultaneously, is a rising concern for elderly patients. Taking too much medication or unnecessary medication can have detrimental effects. Each time your parent has a change in medications from a doctor’s visit or hospital stay, there is an increased risk of errors in their medication regimen. This may mean that your parent is unnecessarily taking more than one of the same types of medication for the management of the same problem. Perhaps they are now taking too high or too low of a dose. Or perhaps their prescriptions run out before refills are ordered. Anytime a change of medication occurs, there is a chance for error. A private patient advocate can help eliminate these errors by reviewing, educating, and managing medications, as well as necessary refills.


Navigate Care

A private patient advocate can navigate care to get your aging parent the care needed. For example, perhaps they need a new primary care physician or specialist. Perhaps they have had the same provider, but it’s just not working with their current lifestyle. Maybe they are homebound and can now benefit from a visiting physician or provider offering virtual visits. Perhaps they now need more in-home care, etc. There are several options available that are often covered by insurance or community programs. It also may be time for your parent to start considering a change in the living environment. We can help compare options as well as assist in a smooth transition.

Preparing and Attending Appointments

Not only can a private patient advocate help find a new provider and schedule appointments, but we can also prepare you for that appointment so that you are getting the most out of your visit. For example, we will discuss and provide a list of questions to ask and any areas of concern. We are available to attend appointments as well. We can also arrange for your parent to be transported to their appointments as needed.

Quality of life

The ultimate goal of a private patient advocate is to assist in navigating your parent’s health so that they achieve the best quality of life. Understanding what they want to achieve and maintain is our first step. We will LISTEN to you and your parent and never make assumptions. Our assistance and approach are tailored specifically to meet the needs of your unique and special parent so that you can rest assured that the person that once cared for you, is receiving the care and assistance they now need.

Call Pathway Patient Advocates today- we are ready to help (947) 517-8395

How to Find the Right Second Medical Opinion

The Importance of a second opinion 

Deciding to get a second opinion is a difficult choice in itself. Many times patients are hesitant to ask for a second opinion because they feel that their current doctor or other healthcare provider will think negatively toward them. A good healthcare provider will want their patient to find the best care whether it is by them or another provider. A healthcare provider should encourage and not discourage a second opinion. If you have the feeling that your provider is put off by your second opinion consideration; then perhaps more of a reason to find a new provider that you are more comfortable with. Once you have made the decision, you want to make sure it is worthwhile. Let’s discuss the steps involved in finding the right second opinion.   

1. Research the right doctor

     In America, having the choice of so many medical providers to choose from can be both a blessing and a curse. Options are great, but can sometimes be overwhelming. When looking for a second opinion you want to make sure you are finding a specialist that is experienced in your specific diagnosis or symptoms. A private patient advocate can research for you to find you the right match. Even if you have a rare disorder, we can find an experienced doctor for your second opinion. Chances are we may even be familiar with your rare disorder based on prior clients. While some situations may benefit from a specialist referring you to another doctor of the same specialty; most often you want to do your private research to find someone specialized in your condition. Fortunately, with technology, you are often not confined to your demographic area. A private patient advocate provides options of specialists that fit your criteria. Another important thing to note is that as private patient advocates, we are not affiliated with any specific healthcare system or insurance company. We also do not participate in any referral fee agreements with specialists. Therefore, we have no incentive to refer you to one provider over another. 

2. Determine how you will pay for the visit

Once the research is done, you will want to determine how the visit will be paid for. If you have insurance, a patient advocate can help determine if the visit will be covered and an estimate of the amount that will be covered. Oftentimes additional information is required by insurance companies, such as prior authorization, etc. Providing these necessities may determine whether or not the visit will be covered. In situations where your insurance does not cover the visit, or even if you do not have health insurance; your private patient advocate can provide options. Out-of-state visits may not be familiar with your insurance policy, and a patient can make necessary clarifications and work to help smoothly facilitate the process. 

3. Schedule the visit on time

It is not uncommon for specialist new visits to wait time for months to even years. What’s the point of finding the right specialist if it takes years to see him? Sometimes patients do not have that long to wait. Fortunately, a private patient advocate can often obtain sooner appointments because they are familiar with what symptoms and parts of your diagnosis are important to share when making the appointment. In addition, many specialty offices have shared with us that patients with private patient advocates are more prepared for their appointments and have a lower rate of cancellation. 

4. Prepare for the visit

 Once you have the appointment, how can you best prepare for your appointment? You often have about 45 minutes to share and discuss everything with the specialist, be examined, and hear the plan. Time will fly by once the visit starts, and you don’t want to feel like the visit was rushed and didn’t get to address important issues. Adequately preparing for the visit can prevent this from occurring. You may have piles of medical records (which you will never be able to cover in one visit). Or you may have little to no records to share and have no idea what questions to ask. A private patient advocate can obtain and prepare necessary information, and discuss a way to share it in the post appropriate way. You can go into the visit feeling prepared, relaxed, and confident. Many patients also prefer Dr. Borrelli or another representative from Pathway Patient Advocates to attend the doctor’s visit. This can be accommodated as well. 

5. The results 

 So what happens after the visit? Likely the visit will have 2 outcomes; 1. the provider will provide some sort of new or modified plan from your first doctor visit. 2. The provider will share a plan consistent with the first. Either result is useful. If the second opinion is the same as the first, then that may give you increased confidence that you are choosing the best option. If you still feel that is not the right option, start considering a third. If you are offered a new management plan, you will likely have some more research to better understand the change. You may be coordinating care between the two providers, sharing records, requiring more tests, and arranging new appointments. While this new plan may be just what you needed to manage or treat your condition; it comes with a lot of navigating and coordinating. A private patient advocate can take care of the navigating and coordinating so that you can focus on healing. 

Make the most out of your second opinion visit

Get the most out of your second opinion by having a private patient advocate help. A private patient advocate can assist with finding the right doctor, understanding how you will pay for the visit, scheduling the visit on time, preparing and even attending the visit if indicated, and can even help after the visit is over. Call Pathway Patient Advocates to learn more (947) 517-8395.