advocacy business

Successes, Failures, and My Biggest Surprise

12 years. While on the one hand, 12 years seems like a looong time, on the other hand, it has gone by in the blink of an eye. I’m referring to the 12 years I’ve focused my professional life on building the profession of independent health and patient advocacy, having made the decision in 2007 to begin building an online presence for advocates through the AdvoConnection Directory website. It eventually launched in Fall 2009* and evolved to become The Alliance of Professional Health Advocates. So I’ve been giving thought to what I consider to be our biggest successes, biggest failures, …

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Licensed, Certified, Uppercase, lowercase: Where Are You?

Andrea is confused, and if Andrea is confused, others among you are, too. She’s just the one who asked. (You might want to thank her!) Andrea posted a comment on a previous APHA Blog post called Revisiting the Mean Girls in Our New Advocacy Environment asking me to follow up now that we have certification for Patient Advocates. Her confusion (excerpted, but you can read it all here): In my opinion, the PACB certification does not nullify or restrict a state license in nursing. It feels like these two knowledge bases go hand in hand. I cannot find any information …

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How Much Do Patient Advocates Charge?

If someone asked me what question I am asked most frequently, I’d tell them the answer is some variation of this family of questions: How much do advocates charge for their services? What is the hourly rate for patient advocates? How much do patient advocates make? How much money do patient advocates get paid? What is the average amount a patient advocate charges? We’ll begin by answering these questions with a question (bad form, but it makes our point…) How much does it cost to take a vacation? What does it cost to go to college? How much more can …

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When Is an Advocate Not an Advocate?

image - no excuses

Twice in the past week, I heard from people whose APHA memberships expired, explaining why they didn’t renew. In both cases excuses in the form of complaints about their memberships were made. A little bit of research turned up the facts that those complaints were at least misguided. I responded to each of them about their frustrations. In both cases, they felt insulted. Now, don’t get me wrong. I receive criticism and suggestions on a regular basis, sometimes including good, usable, feedback. I’m always appreciative of constructive feedback and ideas even if it’s in the form of criticism. That’s how …

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When Granny Doesn’t Want to Cross the Street

You have probably heard that old joke about a Boy Scout who was determined to help a little old lady cross the street. After a number of attempts and iterations, he finally picked her up and carried her to the other side of the street, set her down on the sidewalk, and left, having completed his good deed. But the joke was really on him – because the lady had no interest in getting to the other side. She had wanted to stay right where she was. We frequently receive requests to take Granny across the street. They come in …

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Independent Advocacy’s Three-Legged Stool of Success

In response to one of the most frequently asked questions I get as the director of The Alliance of Professional Health Advocates – I might be providing an answer you don’t expect. That’s OK! Because if you don’t expect it, then you may hear it even more clearly than you otherwise would. And that can only be good. I hear the basic questions in a number of formats: Do I need to get a degree or certificate to be a patient advocate> Followed by, “what degree” or “what courses do I need to take?” Do I need to be certified …

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