Nancy Ruffner

Nancy Ruffner Patient Advocate - Aging Strategist
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Nancy Ruffner

Nancy Ruffner Patient Advocate - Aging Strategist
Advocate Location
Piedmont , SC 29673
Special Care & Aging
Other Services
Medical Guidance
TeleAdvocacy Available
Paid Consultations Only
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*Greater National Advocates Terms of Use Apply
How I Can Help
One-to-One consulting with patients and their loved ones. Specialty in successful aging and including Solo Agers.
Bring your concerns including: Medical, Legal, Financial, Housing, Insurance, and Support.

Are you looking for simple, and immediate? For that reason I only offer
- ONE-HOUR Consultations -
No contracts nor lengthy obligations
Triage of your matter - Candid assessment by a seasoned professional patient advocate
Problemsolve - Yep, we’re making it a verb, and heading for solution.
How Stuff Works - Successful aging, healthcare navigation, Best Fit -housing, essential legal documents, tricky conversations, building your team, finding resources, accomplishing goals.
Gain Direction - Q&A. Prioritizing. Next steps. Clarity.

Gain in ONE HOUR
Navigational Tips and How To’s. Suggestions for courses of action. Tap my brain, gain the benefit of every situation I have assisted in my decades-long career.
Resources - How To Find them, how to use them.
Direction - for more information, including reading and research, organizations that are info-clearinghouses. For a diagnosis, sources for possible financial assistance. How to identify, find and vet other professionals you may need along your way.

No long-term commitment
No invoicing
No open-ended, "how-long-is-this-gonna-take-and-what-will-it-cost-me? ANXIETY.
Complete focus on you and your situation

Designed for:
Starting, stuck, or stymied
Need To Know, Now!
Learning How Stuff Works

Telephonic and video conferencing available.
Important Information About Me
  • I offer TeleAdvocacy Service
  • I am insured
  • My geographical area of practice is Online consulting - US-based in Greenville SC. 30+ years in Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill NC, my lay of land remains current.
Why I Became A Professional Health Care Advocate
I can tell you that I've been "Inside The Kaleidoscope", too.

Armed with education and relevant work experience my sister and I thought we were the two best-equipped daughters on the planet to assist our parents as they aged. With my sister as part of the area Ombudsman office and I as a Legal/ Financial Specialist within a global EAP (Employee Assistance Program, benefits), we had phenomenal research capabilities and a wealth of resources at our fingertips.

What we encountered was a fragmented and complex healthcare system and soon I saw the gaping need. We struggled to oversee care coordination and ensure adequate communication among providers so as to make informed decisions. We put out fires, like when a specialist prescribed a medication considered to be dangerous in our father's condition (it was among those listed on the Beers Criteria® for Potentially Inappropriate Medication Use in Older Adults). We fought with a Long Term Care insurance company to even get the claim initiated so that all those years of our parents' faithful payments would render funding for the care that they now needed. We researched and employed technology, created accessibility. We downsized and right-sized and helped our folks as they entered Independent Living, Assisted Living, and Memory Care.

Here's an interesting part. We were as sisters and caregivers and members of the Sandwich Generation, holding down professional employment and all the while spinning plates became fatigued and debilitated individuals. Grappling with home/work/life situations we found ourselves in disagreement regarding a parent's care decisions and housing. We became estranged. At one point I nearly sought to legally contest my sister's suitability as Agent with Power of Attorney. I myself had no support. You see, we both wanted what was best (for our dad), we just had different ways of achieving it.

I get it now. In my work now you will hear me refer to this facet of caregiving as "Quibbling Siblings" (whether infighting, downright estrangement, or even sabotage). I've been there.

I was meeting with success, truly navigating. Friends and professionals began to seek out my help with their circumstances and for advice.

More than a few folks declared "You should really hang out your shingle." My reply for a while was a steadfast "NO!" (meaning "No, I could never"; things were too raw and In-My-Face). Besides, I loved and valued my work, and since my employer was a benefits company I was secure in them, surrounded by and with access to every benefit imaginable for health, work and life. Why would I ever want to leave that?

A series of events would soon follow, unconnected and unsolicited signs whose result was as close to 'A Calling' as I had ever felt. I was peppered with enough signs that I felt I must pay attention to them. So the "I could never" became the "maybe I could", and then the "could" was followed by the "I should" and finally the declaration: "I will".

I've never looked back. And there's very little I would change.

I founded an agency called NAVIGATE NC, and worked within it 2013-2022. NAVIGATE NC became a market leader for patient advocacy services, serving as the voice of patients and their families and enabling patients to receive the highest quality care.

Today my practice involves online consulting with patients and their loved ones by telephone or video conferencing. I am today a national speaker, presenting at conferences and events on topics such as navigating a complex healthcare systems, successful aging, Solo Aging, and handling tricky communication. I also coach healthcare entrepreneurs both in start up or to grow their businesses.

I look forward, every day, to providing remedy. My job is to provide remedy, and I do that by provoking thought, bringing education and information so you can make the best decisions for you. My antennae will be up for you or your loved one: for best outcome, for safety, as support, and to save you time and money. I can show you the way through The Kaleidoscope.
Contact Advocate
Formal Education
Western Carolina University, Bachelor of Science in Social Work, 1979
NC State University, GCCE (Graduate Certificate Counselor Education) 2010
Additional Skills
I bring a wealth of savvy and a ton of tenacity. I have a work ethic "to beat the band", and strong integrity not often displayed in our society today. I am a sum of my experiences, and you will often hear me say that I'll "bring the 500 families" I've helped along with me, to help you now.
Now offering 1:1 consulting for:
* Patients and loved ones
* Solo Agers
*Adult Children with Aging Parents
Professional Affiliations
Member, Greater National Advocates
Member, Professionals Working With Solo Agers
Certified Dementia Friendly Business