Nature of business: I help people get the best health care possible. I research illnesses, medications and treatment options, and I educate my clients. I accompany my clients to their doctors' visits and coordinate care amongst multiple physicians. I evaluate clients' medications to identify side effects, possible interactions and depletions and help "connect the dots" so clients can focus on their health.
How long have you been in this business? I've been a registered nurse for more than nine years, and a patient advocate for as long as I have been in the medical field, about 25 years. RN Patient Advocates of Arizona was founded in 2011.
What inspired you to go into this business? A while back, a family member was overwhelmed by a diagnosis of lung cancer. I got involved, spoke with experts and did some research. I got her in to see one of the top cancer doctors in the country. Today, she has a clean bill of health. This inspired me to offer assistance and education to others, so that people could make informed decisions. The state of health care today demands that we make sure we get the right diagnosis, understand the options and get the right treatment.
Professional background: I've worked in the medical field for 25 years. Before becoming a registered nurse, I was a medical office manager and an insurance specialist and worked in family practice, physical therapy and medical-surgical practices. As a nurse, I've worked in home health care, been a school nurse, and since 2005, I've been a hematology and oncology nurse. Last year, I completed the Independent RN Patient Advocate course, which is offered exclusively to experienced R.N.s in association with The University of Arizona, College of Nursing.
What obstacles have you overcome in your professional life? I started nursing school shortly after my third child was born. It was difficult juggling school and family.
What are your greatest accomplishments? Personally, it would be raising my children with my husband of 24 years. Professionally, it would be taking the leap and starting my business. I enjoy helping others by providing a vital service to the community.
What advice can you give other professionals? It's never too late to go out on your own. Don't be afraid to fail.
How do you contribute to the local community? We support many organizations, including Temple Solel, Valley of the Sun Jewish Community Center and local little leagues and public school arts programs. Our children manage their own Bnai Tzedek funds. We have participated in, and volunteered at the JCC Maccabi Games for six years. We also foster pets in need.
What role does Judaism play in your professional life? The ethical values at the core of Judaism guide me in life and business. They teach me to treat my clients with compassion, as I would any family member.
Synagogue: We belong to Temple Solel.
City of residence: Scottsdale.
Family: My husband, Howard, is a program manager for a missile development company. Our children are Ian, 20; Jacob, 15; and Emily, 14.
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