Exploring Specialized Roles in Health Care Advocacy


Advocates can specialize in order to provide more targeted assistance for patients.

At the 2022 Healthcare Advocate Summit, Shawn Newton, a pharmacy technician and medication access coordinator at the Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah, shared the specialized model used by the Huntsman Cancer Institute and demonstrated through role-play how the model works in real time.

“One of the biggest resources we have is [our] specialization model,” Newton said. “Not everyone is going to be able to do that…[But] this is working pretty well for us, and if you can do something at your institution to mirror this, you’ll see huge benefits.

“I do really believe in this model,” he added. “We have a research project we’re working on to help advocate for this [program] more, because it is working. Even though it has shortcomings, I think those shortcomings are more easily navigated than just a random influx of referrals for any disease, for any drug, at any time.”

Advocates who work directly with patients and medical staff provide critical insights crucial to improving the patient journey. The Healthcare Advocate Summit fills a gap for advocates, creating a space where advocate voices drive conversations around solutions for medication access issues faced in the health care industry.

Full sessions from the 2022 Healthcare Advocate Summit are available to purchase on demand. To learn more about the 2023 Healthcare Advocate Summit, taking place September 6 to 8, 2023 in New Orlans, Louisiana, visit healthcareadvocatesummit.com.

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