Please upgrade your browser

The Need for Patient Advocates Is Clear

The Professional Patient Advocate Institute (PPAI) is a member organization and a community aligned around the common cause of providing advocacy for consumers as they strive to secure their healthcare needs and cover their insurance and financial matters.

Healthcare can be an arduous road to navigate. Catastrophic injuries, chronic illness, complex medical conditions and age-related needs are but a few of the life events that can lead to serious financial and care-related roadblocks. Attaining time-sensitive, germane care is not a circumscribed benefit but a right for all individuals.

The Institute welcomes the wide range of healthcare professionals and others currently working as a patient advocate or those in search for a new model that will enhance their existing practice. The Institute provides a range of services to its members, including resources to grow their businesses, educational opportunities to ensure clinical competency, tools and resources that expand their vision with the ultimate goal of improving the patient experience.

As an organic outgrowth of the emergent patient advocacy paradigm, the Institute offers a Certificate program dedicated to this unique model of care management. The Certificate program is a comprehensive educational process aimed to enhance the training of those in this specialized field, and it serves as a point of entry to professionals who want to transition to this new role, providing a course of study that builds on an existing body of knowledge.

As part of the training program, members gain information and resources that enable them to start a business or broaden their organization’s ability to provide patient advocacy. This training ensures a driving mission: that each consumer has the ability to have control over and benefit from safe, quality, evidence-based care at the right time and in the most appropriate setting.

About Patient Advocates

Patient advocates come from a broad spectrum of professional disciplines that make up today’s healthcare team. They include professionals such as case managers, nurses, disability management specialists, physicians, pharmacists, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, psychologists, nurse navigators, geriatric care managers, life care planners, rehabilitation nurses, financial/insurance/billing advocates, behavioral health specialists, and social workers and other professionals who have a health-related degree and possess the skills to assist patients and families in navigating the complex healthcare system. Patient advocates who enter the profession through personal experience are considered part of the healthcare team and a professional representative for the patient. The patient advocate is viewed as a professional who can objectively assist consumers in understanding and making sense of their healthcare needs.

Why Patient Advocacy is Needed

Consumers of healthcare want to be engaged in their health and healthcare. But they realize the industry is complex, fragmented and requires a specialized skill. In addition, with the cost of healthcare services increasingly shifting to the consumer, people are more cognizant of the true cost of services and want to ensure the recommended plan of care is necessary and meets their goals. When faced with healthcare challenges, many individuals realize the advantage of having a patient advocate, who gives them a voice, understands their goals, conducts research and provides valuable information to help them make informed decisions.

The Professional Patient Advocate Institute

The Professional Patient Advocate Institute offers high-level, in-depth training to those currently practicing as advocates and provides an entry point for those who desire to transition to an emerging practice, or those who want re-enter the field from retirement. The Institute serves independent patient advocates, in-hospital patient advocates, employer groups and others interested in ensuring effective, consumer-driven healthcare. The Institute offers professionals who have an understanding of the healthcare system the opportunity to improve their skill sets so they can truly advocate for the consumer and their families to improve the patient experience and ultimately contain healthcare costs.

A Certificate in Professional Patient Advocacy

Earning a Certificate in Professional Patient Advocacy allows students to:

  • Improve the patient and family healthcare experience
  • Engage patients and their families in the plan of care
  • Promote patient- and family-centered care
  • Reduce medical errors by educating and empowering patients and their families about the plan of care
  • Empower consumers and families to have a voice in their health and healthcare
  • Help reduce fragmentation and duplication
  • Be part of the solution to control escalating healthcare costs
  • Reduce frustration and restore consumer trust in the healthcare system
  • Learn a new model of care coordination
  • Have a common curriculum that unites professionals from various disciplines
  • Better understand the components of patient advocacy
  • Expand their current practice to include patient advocacy
  • Educate consumers, employers and other stakeholders

In addition to ongoing training and a certificate program, the Professional Patient Advocate Institute provides access to a number of complimentary resources, including:

  • Content Center: In-depth articles published weekly providing you tips, tactics and insights into the field of advocacy. Read the article archives »
  • Patient Advocate Report: Sign up now to receive the free Patient Advocate Report letter delivered to your email inbox the third Wednesday of every month. Sign-Up Now »
  • Toolkit and Resource Center: Essential documents and tools for patient advocates, including: healthcare resources, forms, legal documents, business management items, as well as articles and resources to advance independent advocates’ businesses, including: articles, checklists, press release templates, marketing tips and more. Go to resource center »
  • Learn More About Earning a Certificate in Patient Advocacy Go to Certificate Programs »

About PPAI and DecisionHealth

The Professional Patient Advocate Institute is a partner of DecisionHealth a member of the H3.Group, a leading integrated healthcare information publishing company focused on optimal care coordination and the enhanced outcomes of both professionals and patients. Supporting PPAI’s mission of achieving top-quality care delivery and simplified healthcare navigation is H3.Group’s robust network of media services, which are aimed at bolstering the practice of patient-facing professionals. Visit DecisionHealth online at H3.Group.

Corporate Offices

Two Washingtonian Center
9737 Washingtonian Blvd., Suite 500
Gaithersburg, MD 20878-7364