A Patient Advocate needs extensive experience within the healthcare industry in order to function effectively.
Katie Fitzgerald, Founder Of Golden Isles Patient Advocate, has over 25 years’ experience managing the daily operations of several medical practices and surgery centers. She has lived in Glynn County for 15 years and has had to opportunity to get to know the local providers and the health system, both from a management standpoint as well as a patient. Her medical leadership expertise focused on patient satisfaction, contracting with insurance carriers and attorneys and bringing new services to the community.
She has an extensive billing and collections background and thoroughly understands how health insurance works, specifically Medicare. Katie has a passion for helping patients understand the benefits of their insurance plan, and can help you select the plan that is just right for you!
Katie is a patient advocate, no longer representing physicians, corporations or insurance companies.
She is dedicated to only the best interests of her clients – the patient.
Five Great Reasons to Consider Hiring Katie Fitzgerald as your Patient Advocate!
- This system is too confusing! We all find the healthcare system confusing and too complex. A good patient advocate can help either fight the system or take advantage of it. I know how to do both!
- You need to concentrate on your health and recovery. When life throws you or a loved one a challenge, your time, attention, energy, and resources will be focused on going through the process of reaching a positive outcome. Hiring an advocate can put assets on your side from the beginning.
- You aren’t sure what and who to pay. The easy answer is to match your EOBs to your statements. But this won’t help you if a mistake was made and you don’t know it. My background as a billing manager enables me to offer you expert administrative and claim-related auditing services, as well as other financial skills.
- My insurance is not paying my claims. What is the reason? There should be a good explanation as to why an insurer would reject a claim. If you do not have the time, knowledge or inclination to hear one person throw the blame at another with no resolution in sight and growing frustration, let me handle the job. Errors will be rectified, records sent, appeals filed and sanity restored.
- I cannot pay these bills. Let me first remind everyone that checking coverage and benefits, getting authorizations and assessing liability should be done BEFORE treatment or procedure. Preparation is key. Depending on the situation, I can negotiate on your behalf, arrange for a payment plan or a reduction of your liability.
If those five reasons aren’t enough to convince you – the next five are practical reasons to hire Katie Fitzgerald of Golden Isles Patient Advocate as your own Personal Patient Advocate.
1. I am confused about my treatment options. Managing a chronic illness or condition will almost certainly require a change of mind, a lifestyle adjustment, the need for educational resources and a bit of support. I research your clinical, pharmaceutical and treatment options. This will ensure that the prescribed course of active meets FDA guidelines, is covered by your insurance, and that you have all the necessary information you need to make an informed decision. It will allow you to prepare yourself, your caregiver and loved ones to the upcoming adjustments and changes in your life. While only a medical doctor can and should advise you on your medical needs and status, your advocate can translate new requirements into concrete steps. Nutritional musts can be turned into recipes and menus, treatment side effects can be eased, preparation can lower anxiety and bring back a sense of control, education will empower. As your advocate, I can help find specialists, treatment centers and/or necessary equipment. I can also schedule the second opinion appointment you are entitled to and should seek for all life-threatening illnesses.
2. I cannot care for my loved one. Sad reality is that most family members are unable to care for others, due to work obligations, geographical distance, or responsibilities their own family. As your loved one’s advocate, I would step in and act as the main caregiver, be their eyes and ears. Accompanying the patient to appointments, monitoring their prescription schedule, assisting with daily logistics at home, acting as their liaison with medical office staff and insurance carriers, handling communications with clinicians, being at their bedside while inpatient or in another facility, are all part of this service. I report findings, changes and progress in a status report to the person(s) who has hired me if agreed upon by the patient. I can also organize other supportive care, supervise activities, monitor visits and communicate your loved oneʻs mental and emotional state of mind.
3. I need someone to coordinate my care at home or in rehab facility. The logistics of dealing with a serious diagnosis or condition are often obscure and unknown at first glance. From finding a neighbor to feed Fluffy, to making sure the wheelchair is delivered to the right address, to updating and communicating the patient’s medication list to all clinicians involved, to checking insurance coverage for all services, to driving a spouse to visit, I can help coordinate your care, and help with the day-to-day management of your affairs until you are back to normal. I collect discharge instructions and make sure they are implemented and followed. If you are at home, I will arrange for and supervise treatments and therapies given there. Your safety and well-being are given the utmost priority.
4. I need help dealing with legal and social paperwork. A patient is given a difficult diagnosis, needs to start treatment or schedule surgery that same week, and must deal with 1,001 details while sinking into the unknown and having to find immediate solutions to countless problems. I can help! Worries like filing disability forms, signing up for financial support, searching out all benefits available are all things I have experience doing from being a manager, patient and daughter of a chronically ill parent. If a patient faces a shortened life expectancy, or may be incapacitated to make decisions, what discussion should we have? Who with? What are the necessary forms to fill out? Where should these be filed? While you should seek legal, financial, and accounting advice from a specialized professional, an advocate can help answer many of these questions, provide you with forms and assist you with applications. I can educate you on your basic rights and direct you to more appropriate or specialized organizations and agencies. I stay in my wheelhouse.
5. I need other services. Advocates are sometimes known to carry other hats: life coach, stress-management advisor, interpreter, mediator, medical literature researcher, alternative modalities consultant, mentor, moral supporter. I have helped plan funerals, applied for VA survivor benefits, social security for surviving spouses, hired Hospice and advocated for telecommuting work opportunities. Trust me to locate national support organizations, local resources, free or low cost services. Allow me the opportunity to help you reach your health goals and be your most trusted confidant.