The letter below is another excerpt from the book “U is for Urine”, by Robbie Gardner, former RN and VP Marketing at Quality Underwriting Services.
N is for Nurse
Nurse is the term that many people still gravitate to, but we are trying to change that to Health Professional. In my 25 year career there have been many changes to the industry, but also to the Health Care and Education as well. When I began, every single Health Professional that worked for QUS was an RN and they were all female. Based on the changes, this has allowed the paramed companies the ability to hire different designations of Health Professionals.
To make a long story short, we use the term Health Professional (HP) because we can hire Rn. Lpn, Lab Tech, Paramedic, EMT, etc. Based on their designation and their experience, that determines how we approach them for training.
It is important to know that when we train, it is in person at our office in Edmonton. Training via phone or Skype does not work. How can you accurately review blood draw technique over a phone or computer video link? Our local office is essential to our services. All HP’s are licensed or certified in their Province that they work and carry photo ID.
As an Insurance HP, we are there to gather the medical information requested by the insurance company, quickly and efficiently. We are not there to counsel or diagnose them, nor discuss insurance with them. Any questions of that nature from the client, will be referred directly to the Advisor to answer.
Being a mobile service, we bring our equipment to the client’s home or office. The HP’s have a medical bag, which includes a blood pressure cuff (regular and large), tape measures, weigh scale, the appropriate insurance paramedical form and a specimen kit (blood or urine).
Our weigh scales are good to 320 lbs. Anything beyond that weight would have to be verified with a larger scale. I mentioned that all our HP’s carry large cuffs, so we can accommodate those with larger biceps, versus another appointment.
When an HP phones to set an appointment with a client, they will provide guidance about the parameters that the insurance company outlines. For example, fasting. Some companies have particular times of hours for fasting, some recommended, others not at all. We are aware that the Advisor will have prepared the client, so our conversation is almost a review with the client, reinforcing the guideline.
Our HP’s, as mentioned can be female or male; but there are also languages to consider. We in Edmonton have English, French, Tagalog, Hindu, Punjabi, Fijian-Hindu, Gurjati and Spanish. We are still seeking Cantonese and Mandarin.
Sometimes we are asked about translators and please remember that the insurance company does not want the Advisor acting as a translator, nor a beneficiary as it is a conflict of interest. If a family member can be used as a translator, it would have to be approved by the insurance company. We do have access to a translation services company, again approval by the insurance company is required.
HP was assigned to complete a paramed and a blood profile. The blood profile was completed with no issues. When trying to complete the paramed, the client would not stop texting and was also trying to watch tv. The HP had to review the paramed 3 times with him as she was not certain he was digesting the questions being asked of him. During the appointment the HP called for his attention many times and the client’s spouse finally became very upset with him as he was not participating in the medical. It had to be stated to the client that we are completing a legal document and that it is to be answered accurately. Needless to say a frustrating appointment. With the help of the spouse she was able to get the client on track.
We all know the process, you can lead a horse to water, but you cannot make them drink. We appreciate the Advisor preparing the clients, that is very important and it is the starting point for our role. We also understand not everything is in their control as in the above story and we may have different situations to deal with. Our HP’s simply want to do the job at hand and do it properly and professionally.