May 6, 2022

Patient advisor uses her experience to advocate for others

I retired from my 25-year career with a large healthcare insurer in 2009. At that point, my desire for patient advocacy work led me straight to the University of Michigan healthcare system. I also serve as an advocate for the American Society for Clinical Pathology and for the American Cancer Society. I am honored and privileged to serve each of these institutions. It feels wonderful to educate and empower patients, move the needle on important issues, and make a real difference in policy, quality, and safety in health care.

Michele Mitchell, OPE Patient Advisor

Michele Mitchell shares her story being a patient to advisor to advocate. 

Patients have a right to their own health information but often need assistance understanding and interpreting it. There is a vast amount of information – and, unfortunately, misinformation – out there. Patients need help to synthesize this information and I think doctors and health systems need to take on an expanded role. Trusted clinicians should provide reputable sites to search, engage in more outreach, and preemptively educate their patients. I love the phrase, “Nothing about me without me.” However, patients must also take more responsibility for their own care. They need to help their providers by engaging in the prescribed treatment plan, asking the right questions, and partnering with their providers in shared decision-making.

To listen and read about Michele's journey click on the link below.