A Patient Navigator To Help You Find Your Way
If you decide to have joint replacement surgery, you’ll be assigned a patient navigator. Your navigator is your resource throughout your experience. She will schedule your pre-surgery appointments as well as your follow-up appointments after surgery.
With your patient navigator here to help guide you, you won’t have to call multiple people when you have questions. She is your single point of contact for any questions about your surgery.
Q&A with Patient Navigator
What is the best part of your job?
I love seeing patients achieve their range of motion, mobility and independence. I also love the relationships I build with patients. I spend a lot of time with patients and really get to know them. This makes it easier for patients to ask me questions and for me to anticipate their needs.
What can patients do to make sure they benefit from having a patient navigator?
Call me! When people are having surgery, they naturally have a lot of questions. But sometimes, they just don’t ask. It’s important that you feel comfortable before surgery and that you communicate any concerns afterward as well. You’ll get the most out of your relationship with a patient navigator when you let me know what questions or concerns you have.
What if you don’t know the answer to my question?
Of course, that happens. But it’s my job to get the answer. I might have to call your doctor or the rehab clinic or your insurance company, but I will find the answer to your question. What this means for you is you just have one person to call. Most patients find that to be a relief.
What if I have a sensitive question for my doctor?
Naturally, I want patients to feel comfortable telling me anything, but I understand if you want to talk to your doctor. I’ll help you schedule an appointment or have your doctor call you.
What should I do before surgery?
Well, you should always ask your navigator and doctor any questions. Make sure you are 100 percent confident in your decision, and having all of your questions answered is critical for that. I also want patients to make sure their home is ready after surgery — rugs and cords are out of the way, frequently used items are easy to reach, etc. We’ll provide a checklist of everything you need to do before surgery.
Based on your experience, what should patients understand about joint replacement?
Although each patient is different and progresses at different rates, you get out what you put into your rehab experience. It is a collaborative effort between the physician, patient, rehab team and the patient’s support system. Being educated about what joint replacement entails helps the patient take ownership in the outcome. If they know what to expect ahead of time it lessens anxiety and stress so they can focus on recovery.
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