It’s been a few months since I joined the Acadia Benefits team as our Employee Advocate. I was fortunate to be trained by Paula Green, who recently retired after spending over 20 years in this role. My colleagues have been very welcoming and helpful in getting me up to speed on what I need to know about our customers, carrier partners, and ins and outs of the field of employee benefits. Spending the last 8 years working at a large insurance carrier in the Portland area has prepared me well for my new role as Employee Advocate. I am so grateful to have the opportunity to use my skills and knowledge to support employees with this important resource.
I understand dealing with insurance-related issues can be extremely frustrating and confusing for people. Not to mention expensive; our customers and their employees pay a lot for their benefits. Having a dedicated Employee Advocate available is a very valuable and unique resource. It provides companies and HR departments a service to refer their employees to if issues arise. Not only does this free up time for our customers to focus on other important employee-related tasks, but it also provides a firewall for businesses under HIPAA privacy regulations, so employee medical information is kept confidential.
The issues I’ve worked on have varied greatly including questions about bills received, denied coverage for prescription medications, pre-authorization procedures being questioned, and more. I have dedicated contacts with many of our carrier partners who I go to directly to ensure issues are resolved timely, accurately, and seamlessly. Having an experienced resource for our customers’ employees to go to, who knows how to “work within the system,” can save time, effort, frustration, and many times money. This valuable service has helped tens of thousands of employees since the Employee Advocate role was created in 2000 and is provided at no cost to our customers, their employees, and family members.
I look forward to getting to know more of you over the coming months and please don’t ever hesitate to contact me with any questions or issues. You can always find my contact information and details about the employee advocacy services we provide here. And please keep an eye out for my blog series “Tips from Sara” where I will share common issues and trends that I am seeing.