Patient Advocacy begins when you ask members of your medical-care team important questions, empowering yourself to understand all phases of your treatment. Make lists of questions and e-mail or fax them to your doctor. This will help you make the most of the time that you spend with your physician and ensure that you get answers to all your questions.
Improving the Treatment Experience
Patient advocacy continues when you help other young women navigate the system. YSC’s SurvivorLink program, for example, gives you the opportunity to share priceless skills, support and understanding as a patient advocate.
If you really enjoy this role, you can volunteer or try to get a job as a patient navigator at a local hospital — and make a difference in young women’s lives face to face. In this position, you can give newly diagnosed women the gift of your support and experience. These women really appreciate when another survivor helps them navigate the process and avoid common problems.
Patient Advocacy continues as we work to improve the care that providers deliver. Young women make a significant impact when we work to change systems that don’t meet patients’ best interests.
Team Up To Speak Out
Joining an organization can help you add your voice and spirit to patient advocacy. Before becoming active with any group, however, search for one that best represents your values and the causes that matter to you.
Your spirit and convictions, combined with the resources of a good organization, can help us attain improved care, fuller lives and better overall experiences for patients. As a well-informed and educated advocate, you can make a difference!