How to Become a Patient’s Advocate

doctor and patientYou can help hospitalized friends or loved ones by being their patient advocate—the person who will help them work with physicians, nurses and hospital staff. To help your loved ones make the best decisions about their care and treatment, here is some advice:

  • Know what condition your loved one is being treated for.
  • Know your loved one’s rights and responsibilities.
  • Know whether or not your loved one has an advance directive and if so, what it specifies.
  • If your loved one is too ill or reluctant to ask questions, make note of his or her concerns and any you may have. Don’t be afraid to speak up.
  • Will your loved one need home care or care at another facility? Speak with a member of their care team to find out your options.

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