NAHAM Patient Access Week: Patient Service Representative Spotlight!

As part of our NAHAM Patient Access Week celebrations we decided to feature our access agents!

While RelateCare as an organization focuses on patient access from a range of angles: consultancy, quality assurance, scheduling, and many more, it is our agents that are on the telephone, talking and dealing with patients, supporting and helping them to get the care they need when they need it.

What makes RelateCare so special is that we have agents and nurses on both sides of the Atlantic, working together to provide patients with a kind ear and an expert voice to get them through a vulnerable time.

Below are four short interviews with some of our agents from both the USA and Ireland!

 

Sarah Moore (Waterford, Ireland)

What is your role in patient access?

My role is as a Patient Services Representative! 

What do you like about helping patients get access to the care they need when they need it?

I really like being able to help the patient get the appointment that is best for them! I also love being that cheerful voice on the phone, cheering them up when they need it the most.

What are some of the challenging aspects of working in patient access?

It can at times be difficult the get the right appointment, the patient may be quite stressed or agitated and vulnerable, and we are required to calm them down and make sure absolutely everything is ready for them for the appointment. We also really try to make the calls as efficient as possible and get everything we need to get done, while making sure to take care of the patient on not overload them with lots of information while they are worried.

This past year required a lot of resiliency, whether Working from Home, or helping patients during this time – how did you manage to cope with these challenges?

I started in Relatecare in September, working from home.  Before this I have always worked face to face.  Working from home was strange in the beginning but I soon realised that you do not have to be face to face to feel part of a team or to help.  Covid19 Lockdowns has thrown all of us a challenge, but i think we have learnt to adapt and continue as best we can, while learning a new way of life is equally fulfilling as the old way of life.

 

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Joyce Hinkle (Cleveland, USA)

What is your role in patient access?

I am a patient services representative. I answer incoming calls from patients assisting with their scheduling needs or connecting their calls to the appropriate medical offices.

What do you like about helping patients get access to the care they need when they need it?

I like that I am playing an active role in their ability to get good medical care. Patients often report that they have difficulty getting through to their doctor’s offices so I am happy when I can connect them with someone who can assist with the need they have at that time.

What are some of the challenging aspects of working in patient access?

This past year required a lot of resiliency, whether Working from Home, or helping patients during this time – how did you manage to cope with these challenges?

I converted my office area into a desk that is conducive to being productive at work. I also tried to stay in touch with my colleagues as much as I could to stay connected to the team, which was a big help!

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Katelyn Coady (Waterford, Ireland)

What is your role in patient access?

My role in access is following up with patients daily to check up to see how they’re recovery is going and if they are in need of any further assistance.

What do you like about helping patients get access to the care they need when they need it?

I mainly focus on the OBGYN files which are following up with women who have just had a baby, I find I can relate to them on a personal level during these times and I am able to have a genuine conversation with them, which is so important and makes for a great connection.

What are some of the challenging aspects of working in patient access?

I haven’t come across a lot of challenges within access, the only things that may knock me are when patients need more help then I can give them and it can be challenging sometimes to communicate that to patients.

This past year required a lot of resiliency, whether Working from Home, or helping patients during this time – how did you manage to cope with these challenges?

In the past year I found it difficult to change my environment to working from home, I find it quite lonely, during the lock down period we had a lot of challenges at home, we had puppies so between working and our days off we were looking after and caring for 15 dogs, which I found kept my mind busy and I didn’t feel as alone during the pandemic. I also have my partner and children here, so I try my best to communicate with them during my breaks and lunch times.

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Theresa Overton (Cleveland, USA)

What is your role in patient access?

I am a Patient Service Representative, so I mainly focus on refilling prescriptions for patients when they need them. I also notify patients about their labs and appointments to make sure they have everything they need to get the care they need.

What do you like about helping patients get access to the care they need when they need it?

I like assisting patients, especially in any area that is needed. Its nice to help.

What are some of the challenging aspects of working in patient access?

I think some of the challenges of working in patient access would be when patients are having technology issues that slow down the rate of patient care.

This past year required a lot of resiliency, whether Working from Home, or helping patients during this time – how did you manage to cope with these challenges?

I missed everybody in the office because they are like family to me. Our weekly huddles with our cameras on did help out a lot and improved our communication, strengthened our team, and we learned to work better together.

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