JFS of Washtenaw County developed Partners in Care Concierge in 2008 (originally under the name Patient Partners) as our response to an identified need in our community. Since then, we have watched it grow in popularity and demand. The program provides volunteer support during medical appointments for older adults and their family members. The Partners in Care Concierge (PiCC) program facilitates the removal of barriers that prevent older adults from receiving and accessing health care.
Partners in Care Concierge is being replicated across the nation, undoubtedly due to its unique ability to address community needs through outreach.
In 2011, PiCC was recognized for its innovative approach to medical accompaniment for older adults and was awarded the prestigious Goodman Award from the Association of Jewish Family and Children’s Agencies.
Partners in Care Concierge volunteers assist older adults in preparing for medical appointments, as well as improve communication between the older adult and their physician during the appointment. Participants in this program need not have their own transportation; JFS’ Transportation Services have joined forces with Partners in Care Concierge to ensure that both volunteer and client are safely transported to the appointment, and home again.
Partners in Care Concierge volunteers complete a thorough training before they embark on any appointments. This ensures that they are properly prepared to facilitate productive communication between the client and the physician. Volunteers focus on providing comfort and confidence to clients and their family members before, during and after medical appointments. Following appointments, volunteers methodically report accurate information about what transpired during the medical visit to caregivers, as well as comprehensive, detailed notes on any prescribed follow-up care using the system of forms that we have created.
Partners in Care Concierge, like all JFS programs, is open to everyone in the community.