Patient navigators are members of the health care team whose sole mission is to guide patients through the medical maze stretching out before them. Navigators answer questions, identify resources, and serve as a liaison between the patient and the health care team. Research has shown navigators improve the time between diagnosis and treatment for an identified illness or condition.
As a navigator, Trish talks to women to discover barriers to care – whether they’re financial, schedule-based, or personal – and works with the patient to find solutions. She helps connect patients with community resources they need and educates patients about the importance of sticking to the treatment plan. The health care system is complex and can be confusing; the navigator is a guide, helping patients negotiate the twists and turns that may accompany diagnosis and treatment.
You might think of Trish as another nurse tending to your needs, but navigators work with physicians, nurses, radiologists – anyone on your health care team – to coordinate your care and help keep everything on track.
For example, if you have a pelvic floor disorder and you don’t know where to turn, Trish would be the person to contact to help figure out your next steps.
If you’re a woman facing a complex diagnosis or treatment plan, ask your doctor about patient navigation services. As a Women’s Health Navigator for FMH Crestwood, Trish is ready and willing to help.