The National Psoriasis Foundation is constantly looking for ways to improve the lives of people living with psoriatic disease. Three years ago, they opened the Patient Navigation Center, where they provide free (yes, you read that right!! It’s free!), personalized assistance to anyone impacted by psoriatic disease, including patients, families, healthcare professionals, and caregivers.
I recently had the opportunity to speak with the incredible Kathleen Carter, the Associate Director of the Patient Navigation Center, and she provided me with valuable insight into the types of questions and information that a Patient Navigator can provide to you and why it is such a special service for the psoriatic community.
Whether you were diagnosed yesterday or 20 years ago, Patient Navigators answer your questions and find solutions to help you live your healthiest life. It’s not uncommon to believe that even when you’ve been living with psoriatic disease for a while and are actively treating it that you know most everything about the disease. Kathleen told me that it is very common for someone to call with a specific question, but through the conversation with their Navigator, they uncover a larger solution or learn something completely new.
When you initially contact the center, you will be matched with a Patient Navigator who will become your person so that you can continue to work with them through every conversation and they are familiar with your unique situation. You can set up ongoing appointments or just call once and awhile with questions. The center is incredibly proud that they can provide the community with this quality, personalized service that benefits and supports those living with psoriatic disease.
The Navigators are amazing people with so much knowledge about psoriatic disease and they genuinely want to help get us the information we seek. They understand that every person contacting the center is unique and has their own individual needs, so a one-size-fits-all is not how they approach solutions. They can answer just one question or work with you for as long as you want, providing support to you throughout your journey. When you’re ready to call the center, you don’t need to have anything prepared and it’s okay not to know exactly what your questions are. The more willing you are to share with them, the more they can help.
Some of the most common question types they receive are around,
- Understanding treatment options, including how different types work, effectiveness, possible side effects, preparing for the conversation with healthcare provider and feeling empowered to make decisions with their provider
- Possible ways to reduce the cost of prescriptions and understanding ways to get affordable treatment without insurance coverage
- Understanding how insurance works – including selecting new insurance or doctors and budgeting for out-of-pocket treatment costs
- They cannot diagnose medical conditions or treatments, but can help you locate specialists in the area who understand psoriatic disease and will accept your insurance plan
The center serves the community in multiple languages, including English and Spanish, and utilizes a translation service to speak to anyone who has a question about psoriatic disease. They’ve helped over 150,000 people, including patients, caregivers and healthcare providers on behalf of their patients.
There are several ways to contact the Patient Navigation Center, including:
- Visit www.psoriasis.org/navigationcenter
- Call: 800-723-9166
- Text: 503-410-7766
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Or visit https://www.psoriasis.org/navigationcenter to ask a question directly on the website. The center is open Monday – Friday, between 10:30a – 7:30p EST. If you haven’t already, reach out to get the support you need to live your healthiest life with psoriatic disease!