Tell me about care navigators

Danelle Smit

When individuals and families are facing a complicated, chronic or long-term health condition, it can at times be confusing to effectively move through a healthcare experience – knowing what resources to tap into, which providers offer appropriate services, and how to manage medications and health conditions.

At Agnesian HealthCare, our care navigators are available to offer education, support and resources to help patients overcome any barriers that may prevent them from getting the services they need.

Who are care navigators?

Care navigators are trained nurses and social workers that coordinate a care plan for patients from initial testing to consultation with providers. They focus on educating patients and families, facilitating communication with other physicians, finding appropriate community support and offering aid in insurance matters. This assistance is free; there’s no charge to patients or their insurance companies.

They help patients with their fears, concerns and, more importantly, connect them to the necessary resources they need for the most effective and efficient care.

When can care navigators help?

  • History of re-hospitalizations
  • Frequent use of the emergency department
  • Chronic health conditions
  • Poor community support
  • Difficulty in managing medications
  • Poor health literacy/understanding
  • History of non-adherence
  • Increasing frequency of phone calls
  • Multiple physician involvement

What services do care navigators offer?

  • Help patients become active participants in their healthcare and decision making
  • Serve as a central resource for patients as they have questions for further follow up
  • Manage and coordinate provider office visits, diagnostic tests and communications between primary and specialty care physicians
  • Enhance patient ability to self-manage medications
  • Ensure primary and specialty care follow up
  • Educate patient on chronic or long-term health condition
  • Provide on-site support to make sure the right questions are being asked
  • Provide coaching to address adherence issues
  • Help track medical history, track medications and organize medical records

Who can use care navigators?

Care navigators are accessible to all Agnesian HealthCare patients free of charge, with no requirement for length of relationship.

 

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