Denied Health Insurance Claims: Role of Healthcare Advocates

Morgan Ferrell

While having health insurance is essential for receiving necessary medical care, having claims refused can cause undue stress and frustration. Around 20% of health insurance claims are refused annually in the United States, forcing patients to deal with convoluted appeals systems and the possibility of footing expensive medical bills.

Having someone on your side who can explain your rights, talk to your insurer on your behalf, and fight for the care you need is invaluable in these situations. This article will discuss the significance of healthcare advocates in helping people whose insurance claims were rejected, and it will provide data to show how widespread the issue is.

Who are Healthcare Advocates?

What a Healthcare Advocate is?

In the healthcare system, an advocate is someone who fights for patients’ rights and interests. Patient’s rights are protected by healthcare advocates, who fight for their client’s rights to care that is tailored to their individual preferences, values, and health conditions.

As an added bonus, they aid patients in understanding the healthcare system, interacting constructively with their providers, and making well-informed decisions about their health.

Types of Healthcare Advocates

1. Professional Advocates

Healthcare advocates are paid, professionals. These advocates may be nurses, social workers, patient navigators, lawyers, or patient advocates. They may have extensive healthcare system knowledge and patient advocacy expertise.

Professional advocates may work for hospitals, healthcare advocacy groups, or independently. They can help patients with insurance, finances, medical treatment, appointment scheduling, and advocating for their medical needs and preferences.

2. Family and Friends

Patient advocates might be family and friends. They may offer emotional support, help patients navigate the healthcare system, and represent their medical requirements and preferences. Elderly, crippled, or nonverbal individuals may benefit from family and friends.

Relatives and friends can help doctors understand a patient’s medical history, preferences, and values. They may also participate in end-of-life care and treatment decisions.

3. Self-Advocacy

Patients can self-advocate in healthcare. This may involve asking medical inquiries, comprehending their diseases and treatments, and conveying their medical requirements and preferences to healthcare providers.

Chronic patients should self-advocate. Patients can make better healthcare decisions and interact with their doctors by learning about their ailments and treatments.

Denied Health Insurance Claims: How Healthcare Advocates Help

Patients who have their health insurance claims denied may feel frustrated and overwhelmed. This is especially true if they are already coping with a medical condition. Advocates in the healthcare sector can play an important role in this respect. Professionals in the healthcare industry whose job it is to advocate for patient’s rights as they move through the system.

They can assist patients in comprehending their insurance plan, handling appeals and denials, coordinating care with their healthcare providers and insurance companies, and lowering their overall healthcare costs.

Advocates for healthcare can assist with health insurance claims that have been denied in the following ways:

1. Healthcare Advocate as an Educator

Advocates in the healthcare field can clarify the finer points of a patient’s health insurance plan. Many patients struggle to make sense of their insurance policies and have a murky understanding of the specifics of their coverage.

In order to better understand their coverage and make educated decisions, individuals can benefit from having a healthcare advocate explain the policy’s provisions, restrictions, and exceptions.

2. Helping Patients Understand Their Insurance

Patients may benefit from the guidance of a healthcare advocate when trying to make sense of the complexities of their health insurance plan. Many patients struggle to make sense of their insurance policies and have a murky understanding of the specifics of their coverage.

In order to better understand their coverage and make educated decisions, individuals can benefit from having a healthcare advocate explain the policy’s provisions, restrictions, and exceptions.

3. Dealing with Denials and Appeals

If a patient’s health insurance claim is refused, a healthcare advocate can aid them through the appeals process. They can look into the denial letter, find out why the claim was denied, and assist patients in compiling the appropriate paperwork for an appeal.

An advocate for healthcare can also act as a liaison between the patient and the insurance provider, speeding up and easing the appeals process.

4. They Communicate with Doctors and Insurers

A healthcare advocate can act as a liaison between the patient and the healthcare provider or insurer. Appointment setting, patient records maintenance, and insurance claim filing are all examples of this.

Patient advocates in the healthcare industry work closely with doctors and insurance companies to guarantee that their clients get the treatment they need and that their claims are paid in a timely manner.

5. Negotiating and Reducing Healthcare Bills

The cost of medical care is something that advocates may help patients haggle down. They are able to look over medical bills and insurance claims, find mistakes and overcharges, and then negotiate with healthcare providers and insurance companies to lower the total cost of care.

In addition to assisting people in finding affordable healthcare, healthcare advocates can also assist them in applying for cost-saving financial assistance programs like Medicaid and charity care.

Benefits of Healthcare Advocacy

The term “healthcare advocacy” is used to describe the act of aiding patients in understanding and negotiating the healthcare system in order to receive the best treatment available.

Professionals and laypeople alike can assist patients in making educated decisions about their healthcare by advocating on their behalf and providing them with access to resources. Some advantages of healthcare advocacy include the following:

1. Improving Patient Outcomes

Having an advocate in the healthcare system can help patients get the best treatment available, which in turn improves their health results. Patients who have advocates can benefit from an increased understanding of their conditions and treatments as well as an improved ability to express their needs and concerns to their doctors.

A patient’s quality of life and ability to cope with their illness can be greatly enhanced with the assistance of an advocate.

2. Cost Savings for Patients

One further way in which healthcare advocates help patients save money is by negotiating reduced fees with providers. An advocate’s expertise in the healthcare system, as well as knowledge of the individual patient’s insurance plan and available financial aid programs, can be invaluable as patients try to obtain care that fits within their budget while still meeting their needs.

A patient’s advocate can also act as a mediator between the patient and the healthcare practitioner or insurance company in the event of a disagreement over payment or treatment.

3. Health Care Inequality Reduction

Assuring that all patients may easily have access to high-quality care is another way in which healthcare advocacy can help bring about a more level playing field in terms of healthcare.

Patients from underprivileged and marginalized groups can benefit from the assistance of advocates because they are better able to understand the healthcare system, gain access to necessary resources, and have productive conversations with their doctors.

Healthcare advocates can also aid in locating and eliminating structural obstacles to high-quality medical care.

4. Empowering Patients

In addition to improving access to care, patient advocacy can equip individuals to play an active part in their own healthcare. To better connect with their healthcare providers, make educated decisions, and advocate for their own needs and preferences, advocates can assist patients to learn about their legal protections and duties as healthcare consumers.

Choosing the Right Healthcare Advocate

Navigating the healthcare system may be intimidating and complicated, especially for people suffering from a chronic disease, a major medical condition, or a disability. Having a healthcare advocate may be incredibly useful in making educated decisions, interacting with healthcare providers, and ensuring that you receive the best possible treatment.

When choosing a healthcare advocate, there are various factors and attributes to consider to ensure that you have the right individual on your team.

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Healthcare Advocate

1. Personal compatibility

Your chosen advocate should be someone you can open up to and trust with your problems. To get the most out of an advocate, you should feel comfortable talking to them and be certain that they have your best interests at heart.

2. Experience

Choose a lawyer who has worked in the healthcare industry before, preferably with a history in nursing, social work, or administration. They need to be familiar with healthcare systems, medical jargon, and insurance coverage.

3. Availability

Your healthcare advocate needs to be accessible and flexible. Make sure your advocate is available to accompany you to your doctor’s appointments, hospital stays, and any other medical appointments.

4. Cost

You should evaluate whether or not the cost of hiring a healthcare advocate is feasible. Find out whether they take your insurance and if they have any other payment options.

5. Expertise

Think about the advocate’s background and whether or not they’ve dealt with cases similar to yours. You may choose to hire an advocate who specializes in your condition or impairment, for instance.

6. Communication Skills

Think about how confident you would feel in the advocate’s abilities to coordinate your treatment with your doctors, insurer, and others. They should be able to simplify complex medical concepts and processes for you.

Characteristics of an Effective Health Care Advocate


You need someone who cares about your well-being and can empathize with your position to be your healthcare advocate. They should understand what you’re going through and be there for you emotionally.


Advocating for better healthcare can need patience and perseverance in the face of red tape. Your advocate should be calm under pressure and able to keep you focused on your objectives.


A qualified advocate will have an extensive understanding of healthcare issues, available options, insurance coverage, and the advocacy process. They should have the knowledge to respond to your inquiries and give you reliable data.


Appointment scheduling, medical records, and other paperwork are common tasks for advocates in the healthcare industry. Your legal representative ought to be methodical and detail-oriented.


Advocating for better healthcare can test your patience and resolve. Your advocate needs to be persistent and not give up easily.

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Personal injury lawyer Morgan Ferrell has 10+ years of experience. She fights for injury victims and has helped many get proper recompense. Morgan Ferrell writes about personal injury law for and other legal publications. Dedicated to quality and successful.