What is a Patient Advocate?
Patient advocates help patients in various ways. They may ensure a patient sees the appropriate doctors; that treatment plans are being followed; and that the patient is taking advantage of all available treatment options. Advocates also coordinate care between doctors, if needed.
Online Healthcare Degrees in Patient Advocacy
As a new and unregulated field, there are no set national standards or certifications for patient advocates, so employment requirements are very flexible.
Patient Advocate Salaries
A 2008 survey conducted by the Society for Healthcare Consumer Advocacy, a membership group of the American Hospital Association, found that among the 173 advocates who responded, the average salary was $51,895. Only three respondents reported salaries over $100,000 and six reported earning less than $30,000.
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Vicky Phillips was cited in 2009 by US News & World Report as "for 20 years the leading consumer advocate for online college students." In 1989 she designed America's first online counseling center for distance learners on AOL. In 1998 she authored the first print guide to online graduate degrees, Best Distance Learning Graduate Schools put out by the Princeton Review. In 2001 she authored Never Too Late to Learn the Adult Student's Guide to College.