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Health Care Consumer Advocacy Graduate Certificate

National, state, and local communities are experiencing an increasing number of complexities and obstacles to obtaining and providing equitable access to cost-effective, quality health care for diverse populations. UIndy's graduate certificate in health care consumer advocacy prepares students to serve as advocates for health care consumers, caregivers, families, and providers. You'll gain a deeper understanding of the regulatory environment surrounding health care and learn how to effectively guide clients through the many levels of the health care system.

What does a health care consumer advocate do?

Health care consumer advocates have a variety of roles and responsibilities that often include:

  • Serving as a liaison between the patient and the many complexities of the health care system
  • Helping patients understand diagnoses, prognoses and potential outcomes
  • Explaining the availability of treatment options, including facilities and personnel
  • Providing services for the patient, such as obtaining prescriptions, conducting home care evaluations, filing insurance claims and facilitating payment-for-care options
  • Assisting patients in understanding, developing, interpreting, and following health care plans (i.e., medicine dosages and frequencies).

Job outlook for health care consumer advocates

Health care consumer advocacy is a growing field that is expected to be in high demand in the coming years. You'll find jobs for health care consumer advocates under such titles as “patient care coordinator,” “patient case manager” or “client services manager.” Health care advocates work in many settings, including:

  • Hospitals
  • Medical practices, including specialties like oncology, diabetes and integrative health
  • Clinics
  • Social service agencies
  • Insurance companies
  • Long-term care facilities
  • Public & nonprofit organizations

Program length & format

The graduate certificate in health care consumer advocacy is 18 credit hours and can be completed in as little as six months. Due to the rapidly changing health care landscape, this certificate must be completed within one year of the initial start date. Students can chose one of two formats:

  • Face-to-face weekend intensives, with online collaboration and learning between each meeting. The weekend intensives meet one weekend a month for six months.
  • Fully online, which can be completed in six months.


Tuition for 2017-18 is $478/credit hour. Learn more about financial aid for graduate students ►

Technology requirements

  • Access to a computer, preferably at home
  • High speed Internet (dial-up is not acceptable)
  • Internet  Explorer 8.0 (or better) or Firefox 6.0 (or better)
  • Current word processing program
  • A functional head-set with microphone (ex. Logitech)

Courses & prerequisites

The health care consumer advocacy graduate certificate includes six 3-credit-hour courses. You must also complete an online learning prerequisite module (no tuition charged) and may need to complete a prerequisite course in health care terminology if you do not have a health care background. See course descriptions ►

When can I start?

New cohorts in the Health Care Consumer Advocacy graduate certificate program begin each fall.

See admission requirements ►

Apply now