Introduction to Patient Advocacy
(Law 940 – Online; Offered to Certificate students only)
This course provides a comprehensive overview of the core skills employed in patient advocacy. Emphasis is placed on access and application of information, critical thinking and reflective practice, creative and collaborative problem-solving, critical questioning, and communication. Specific course topics include:
- Introduction to the Patient Advocacy Field
- Patient Perspectives
- Communication and Listening
- Empathy and Loss
- Empowerment and Capacity Building
- Framing Decisions
- Creative Problem-solving and Inter-professionalism
- Introduction to the Health Care System
- Health Literacy and Cultural Competency (What we refer to as Caring Carefully)
- End-of-life and Hospice
Applied Advocacy Experience: Patient-Centered Care and Health Advocacy Clinical
(Law, Medical Sciences and Nursing 768 – on campus; combination (on campus & online); or online; fall or spring start for all students; Intro to Patient Advocacy is a prerequisite; alternative summer start for qualifying graduate students with no Introduction to Patient Advocacy prerequisite)
Students advocate for patients with life-threatening and serious illnesses as they navigate the health care system.
Students help individuals and families:
- Evaluate treatment options
- Access quality medical care
- Converse with family members and co-workers about their illness
- Appeal insurance denials
- Assess eligibility for public and private benefits
- Address financial and employment related concerns.
Learners are introduced to the following substantive topics:
- Medical Debt
- Prescription Drug Coverage
- Employment Issues
- Insurance Pricing & Payments
- Public and Private Health Insurance
- Public and Private Disability Benefits
- Clinical Trials and Researching Medical Information
(Law 940 – offered spring semester; blending learning (on campus & online); or online beginning spring ‘13)
This seminar is designed to build on the patient advocacy clinical experience by (1) deepening understanding of the systemic causes of problems consumers experience with health and health care in the U.S. and remedial opportunities; (2) examining key elements of, and challenges/opportunities in, the advocacy field; (3) strengthening identity and capacity as an advocate – with particular emphasis on system-level strategies. The course: introduces theories of change, themes, roles, and strategies of system level advocacy; highlights the opportunities and limitations of patients in the policy domain, explores the role of advocacy groups, and critically examines advocacy in the legislative, regulatory, community, and organizational arenas.
Health Advocacy Externship
(Law 854 – on campus; combination (on campus & online); or online beginning summer ’13; offered to certificate students only)
This externship opportunity is available to certificate students wishing to apply their advocacy skills in a community-based non-profit, government entity, or health care organization. Students work with an Advocacy Faculty mentor to identify a site, on-site supervisor, and prepare a learning contract to guide their experience. The Applied Advocacy Experience is a prerequisite.
Capstone Project or Paper
(Certificate culminating experience; Law 990: Directed Research – on campus; combination (on campus & online); or online beginning summer ‘13))
The Capstone Project or Paper is a self-directed project at the end of the certificate experience. Students are paired with a faculty mentor who guides their project or paper from conception to completion. Past projects have included an analysis of cost-savings as a result of advocacy interventions, a video examining advocacy throughout the stages of cancer care, creation of an information packet for a spinal cord injury support group, and a needs assessment for a community non-profit contemplating advocacy training.
If you are interested in pursuing an independent study related to health advocacy, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.