Saturday, February 2, 2013

Patient navigation: no ordinary job



There’s an adorable “New Employees Checklist” feature at the website of the academic medical center where I recently started work.  In comic sans font are suggestions like: “review departmental phone/e-mail directory, “review performance goals and expectations” and “identify the customers served by this position.”

Hmm…that’s not really the way my first two weeks have gone. Since mine is a new position, “the customers” and “performance goals” are hazy.  Even the departmental directory has eluded me.

I am a new patient navigator

serving the fertility preservation practice at the center for reproductive health. I have crafted several ways to explain to people what that means. If they are insiders, I tell them the name of the faculty physician with whom I work. If they are patients, I tell them about the way I hope to help individual patients get better care and better service.

And if I am speaking to administrators I take a deep breath. I want to say “We may be entering a new, Obamacare era where some care can be delivered without a billing code. How can I help you?”

It's exciting to be part of creating a new paradigm in healthcare! The many stakeholders have many agendas; we need more than shared purpose to succeed. I hope we find the chutzpah, patience and strength to take the most patient-centered path. That's what my GPS is set for.

1 comment:

Chris Sarfaty said...

Love your Feb. 2nd Entry. Feel like I have found a kindred spirit. With you on all points. Found my way to you via #cHealthchat, #connectedhealth today 3-20-13