SHCA Domains of PracticeTM
Gaining knowledge and skills around improving the patient experience is crucial to not only our function as Healthcare Patient Advocates, but as collective voices reaching for an ever-improving patient experience. To aid in the development of fellow advocates and the overall profession, SHCA has identified Domains of Practice as being key skills and knowledge for advanced competency in the role of a patient and consumer advocate:
Distinguish Yourself in Today’s Competitive Marketplace
Whether you are entering the field, climbing the career ladder, or simply want to learn more about various disciplines within patient advocacy, the SHCA Domains of PracticeTM Certificate Program will give you the key knowledge and tools necessary to succeed in your field.
SHCA’s content is delivered over a series of webinars and offers a fresh look at the fundamentals of patient advocacy. The webinars are designed to provide convenient professional development opportunities for those in the fields of healthcare patient advocacy and customer service/service excellence. The content is developed by expert faculty members who facilitate learning through discussion and interaction with participants.
SHCA will present webinar modules designed to teach the following disciplines of the healthcare patient advocacy:
- Patient Advocacy
- Healthcare Management
- Communication Skills
- Research Methods
- Consumer and Service Excellence
Visit the SHCA Domains of PracticeTM curriculum program website for full details on the module calendar, content, fees and more.
SHCA members are entitled to reduced prices for most SHCA educational programs, publications and member services. Join as a member online or call (312) 422-3700 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. CT weekdays.
The Healthcare Consumer Advocate is aware of the philosophical issues and principles surrounding medical practices; is involved with ethical decision making related to the continuation or completion of treatment particular to the end of life; is involved with policies for informed consent, capacity/competency, confidentiality, procuring and donating organs and other tissue, and mechanisms protecting patients and their rights during research, investigations, or clinical trials.
Knowledge of the following legal issues relative to medical ethics:
- Advance Directives
- Ethics Committee
- Patient Bill of Rights
It is essential that the Healthcare Consumer Advocate possess knowledge of these subjects, including any federal or state laws pertaining to these issues, as well as any pertinent Joint Commission or other regulatory agency standards.
1.2 Advance Directives
1.3 Ethics Committee
1.6 Patient Bill of Rights
1.7 Knowledge of legal issues relative to medical ethics
1.8 Knowledge of federal and state laws and other regulatory agency standards
2. Grievance & Complaint Management
The Healthcare Consumer Advocate receives grievances, complaints and concerns from patients, their families and others; analyzes the grievance/complaint/concern with appropriate service departments for resolution and responds to the grievance/complaint according to CMS Grievance Guidelines* and appropriate regulatory agencies. When a possible liability is introduced through customer complaints, the institutional risk management personnel are involved as appropriate. Grievances/complaints/concerns are summarized and compiled for reports to management toward future improvement of customer service.
2.1 Receives grievances/complaints/concerns from patient/families and others
2.2 Analyzes the grievance/complaint/concern with appropriate service departments for resolution
2.3 Responds to the grievance/complaint according to CMS Grievance Guidelines and appropriate regulatory agencies
2.4 Involves Risk Management when a possible liability is introduced
2.5 Issues are summarized and compiled for reports to management and for future improvement
3. Measuring Patient Satisfaction
The Healthcare Consumer Advocate has the knowledge and ability to use various measurement tools, integrate data and prepare meaningful reports, and insures the use of that information, demonstrating how patient satisfaction data impacts the way the organization delivers care.
3.1 Uses valid measurement tools
3.2 Integrates data
3.3 Prepares reports
3.4 Demonstrates how patient satisfaction impacts how the organization delivers care
4. Interpersonal Communications
The Healthcare Consumer Advocate transmits and receives information about patient-focused issues with clarity and skill, involving all interested parties; develops a personal rapport with patients, families, and all healthcare providers for the benefit of the patient. The Healthcare Consumer Advocate expresses ideas effectively, both in speech and writing, and is a skilled listener able to represent the perspectives of others.
4.1 Communicates patient-focused issues with clarity and skill
4.2 Involves all interested parties
4.3 Develops a personal rapport with patients, families, and all healthcare providers
5. Customer Service/Service Excellence
The Healthcare Consumer Advocate is familiar with theories and practices involved in developing integrated customer service initiatives, which may include any of the following:
Policies and Procedures
Reward and Recognition
5.1 Involved in developing customer service initiatives
5.2 Staff Education
5.3 Hiring Practices
5.4 Performance Appraisals
5.5 Management Practices
5.6 Policies and Procedures
5.7 Reward and Recognition
6. Mediation/Conflict Negotiation
The Healthcare Consumer Advocate intervenes in conflicting relationships involving the interests of patients and others in the healthcare environment; promotes reconciliation, compromise, or settlement. While resolving conflict, the Healthcare Consumer Advocate keeps the welfare of the patient in the forefront, realizing that the patient is often the least able party to successfully represent him/herself in a competing or opposing relationship.
6.1 Intervenes in relationships of conflict
6.2 Involves interested parties (family, staff, physician, others)
6.3 Promotes reconciliation, compromise or settlement
7. Crisis Intervention
The Healthcare Consumer Advocate works to manage crisis situations and focus efforts toward the well-being of the patient/family and the stabilization of the crisis/event. When indicated, the appropriate hospital staff is accessed.
7.1 Manages crisis situations
7.2 Focuses on the well-being of the patient/family
7.3 Stabilizes the crisis event
8. Data Management
The Healthcare Consumer Advocate collects patient opinions and/or grievances/complaints/ concerns and other relevant statistical material; compiles information for retrieval and decision making. He/she handles written materials using organizationally directed or prescribed data security, often using computerized methods. These issues are moved forward for performance improvement by the organization.
8.1 Collects patient grievances/complaints/concerns
8.2 Compiles information for retrieval and decision making
8.3 Handles written material using organizations security procedure/policy
8.4 Data collected moved forward for performance improvement
9. Healthcare Management
The Healthcare Consumer Advocate has knowledge of and seeks active involvement in the changing healthcare environment. Every opportunity should be taken to contribute to both local and national issues in the healthcare domain. The viability of the Healthcare Consumer Advocate role is contingent upon the ability to pro-actively anticipate change. Global topics include:
Third Party Payers
On an organizational level, the Healthcare Consumer Advocate maximizes every opportunity to be involved in management and quality improvement efforts, bringing into focus the patient at all times in areas such as:
Policies, Procedures and Institutional Practices
Quality Improvement Programs
*Reference: CMS Interpretive Guidelines for Patient Grievances A-0041 §482.13.
(See SHCA website www.shca-aha.org/shca-aha/resources/cms.html)