Lorie was indispensable in my mother’s recovery from cancer. She attended doctor’s appointments and helped us to understand all of my mom’s options and how to seek them out. With Lorie’s extensive experience as a nurse as well as her knowledge of how to navigate the system of hospital care, we were in the best possible hands. As both my brother and I no longer live in New Jersey, we knew that Lorie could advocate for my mom when we could not be there. In addition to all of her expertise, Lorie is a genuinely loving person and was there every step of the way for my mom. Prior to my mom’s cancer, I had dealt with my father’s Parkinson’s disease and dementia (and all of the care decisions that go along with that), but I never had someone like Lorie on my side. The difference of the the impact on my life was tremendous. My family is blessed to have had Lorie in our life and if you need a care advocate for a parent or family member, Lorie is the person for you.
Long Island City, NY
We had the pleasure of working with Lorie Gardner when our daughter was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer. Lorie took all of the burden off of our plate worrying about medical billing and reimbursements. She allowed me to be Melissa’s Mom during this journey. Lorie was there for us every step of the way, from collecting medical records, attending stressful appointments with us, to sitting with our daughter in the hospital when we just needed a brief break. Lorie became more than an patient advocate to us, she became a caring friend in the time of need. I am ever so thankful we found her!
Mary Anne Nussbickel
I have Chronic lymphocytic leukemia. Because of my high risk of infection I had been receiving home immunoglobulin infusions for ten years. When I became eligible for Medicare my in-home therapy was denied and I was required to drive 1 hour to an outpatient treatment facility that was associated with my longtime oncologist’s practice. I became ill after treatments and felt unsafe driving home. I had considered stopping these treatments altogether. Laura advocated for me with my physician and the insurance companies to find a solution. As a result I have resumed my in home therapy and am able to get my monthly IVIG infusion in my own home.
Thank you Healthlink for making this happen!
Professional, committed, compassionate, and results-driven. These are the qualities and high standards instilled and demonstrated by the entire Healthlink Advocates team. We are so appreciative to Lorie Gardner and Doris Zito for their understanding, expertise, and persistent follow up efforts to unravel and resolve erroneous hospital record-keeping, miscoded medical billings, and insurance claim disputes. Their diligence made it possible for our mother to be admitted to a highly reputable long term care facility just minutes from where we live, and saved thousands of dollars in medical fees. Our confidence never wavered despite the daunting and stressful circumstances.
“As a physician practicing at Columbia University Medical Center for over 20 years I’ve had the privilege of working with some of the most knowledgeable and compassionate individuals in healthcare. When my own father became ill it was a blessing to discover that the professionals at Healthlink Advocates possessed the same qualities that I’ve always associated with the very best of caregivers. Whether it was helping to guide my mother through the complexities of my father’s hospitalization or helping her to select the best hospice facility, their expertise and kindness were an invaluable comfort to our entire family. Should you face difficult end of life issues concerning a loved one or require assistance on the best treatment options available for an illness, the professionals at Healthlink Advocates are compassionate guides who will be with you every step of the way.”
John S. Mercer, MD
Clinical Director-Department of Anesthesiology
Columbia University Medical Center
“My wife was diagnosed with an extremely rare form of lung cancer, a bronchial neuroendocrine tumor in early 2013. We thought our battles were over when her doctor gave her a cancer-free prognosis, but an even bigger battle was just getting started – this time against our insurance provider. Even though our coverage was top-notch and all the procedures were 100% covered and pre-authorized, our insurance provider pulled every trick in the book and took back over $200k that they had already been paid out to dozens of health care providers. To say we were lost, angry, and desperate would be a gross understatement. When all of the threats from countless collection agencies overwhelmed us, we called Lorie. My only wish was that we would have called her sooner. From our very first meeting, Lorie was so understanding and compassionate, I knew we were in the right hands. She helped us make sense of a senseless situation, saved our credit, hundreds of thousands of dollars, and most of all: our hope and sanity during a very fragile and vulnerable time. It is an honor and a privilege to provide a testimonial for Lorie Gardner and Healthlink Advocates, and there’s no words that could ever adequately express how grateful we are for being our loyal, uncompromising advocate.”
New York, NY
“Myself and my family have been working with Lorie Gardner and Healthlink Advocates for the past year regarding my father’s elder-care needs.
At a strategic level Lorie’s assistance was invaluable in helping us to identify, understand, and set in motion critical decisions that needed to be made up-front so as to allow our family to act proactively rather than reactively to milestones in the care of our dad. We cannot emphasize enough the peace of mind Lorie was able to help us realize by bringing order to the seemingly chaotic challenges a family faces when dealing with elder-care issues for a loved one.
At a tactical level Lorie has been highly valuable as a result of her knowledge regarding specific medical issues. Lorie worked closely with us and our dad’s healthcare providers to sort out and bring a comprehensive, unified solution our dad’s prescription drugs. What was once out of control is now a well-reasoned prescription regimen.
With regard to medical appointments themselves, the quantity of office visits to our dad’s providers overwhelmed our family’s ability to schedule time off from our jobs. In this matter Lorie not only accompanied him to the appointments, but was also able to press for clear answers from the providers that could only be asked by someone with a medical background. Once again, Lorie was able to bring clarity to a confusing situation.
Our family is most grateful to Lorie and Healthlink and would highly recommend that you consider the assistance she can offer.”
“In 2013 I needed someone to help me with research on home medical equipment and Medicare coverage for these items. I was feeling overwhelmed and frustrated with how much time and effort it took to get what I needed for my dad. I had been caring for him at home since 2009 and as his condition deteriorated we needed more services and equipment to accommodate his needs. It became clear pretty quickly that the healthcare system is not set up for caring for elderly disabled family members outside of an institution, and with no family members to help me, I decided to hire a patient advocate to take some of the burden off me and help get the information and services I needed in a timely manner. I interviewed Lorie over the phone, and was immediately struck with her intelligence, knowledge and good listening skills. She seemed genuinely interested in hearing what I needed and decided to meet with her in person shortly thereafter.
I decided to hire her immediately after we met, and am so glad I did. Over the next year and a half, Lorie helped me with many essential things. What began as purchasing home medical equipment and talking to insurance providers to clarify what they would and would not cover evolved to attending end of life discussions with my dad’s healthcare provider and I, conducting research on hospice programs and other alternatives, interviewing hospice staff over the phone, accompanying me on hospice visits and even meeting with my dad’s caregivers to answer their questions and respond to concerns about end of life care for my dad. Although I never needed it, Lorie made herself available to meet me at the ER or during the many hospital stays with my dad. And just knowing I could call her was a great relief.
Lorie is a professional, a good communicator and a no-nonsense operator. Her background as an R.N. is an asset and she is willing to find out answers to questions she does not readily know. I highly recommend her to anyone needing help with a loved one or for themselves…whether for practical support, information or advocacy. Health decision-making and care is stressful and complex. Nobody can or should do it alone and in my experience Lorie will work hard for what is in your or your loved one’s best interests.”
Highland Park, NJ
“I was spending 6 hours a day on average everyday fighting my way through the insurance maze to try to get our daughters residential treatment appropriately covered by our insurance company without results. I hired Lorie Gardner at Healthlink Advocates, Inc. who literally look the reigns immediately and cut to the chase with all the parties involved. She took the case through the external appeal process and she gathered and provided the necessary documentation. The external reviewer overturned the insurance company’s decision to deny services, which resulted in a $17,000.00 reimbursement back to us from our insurance company. She knows how the system works and is thorough, highly professional and results oriented! I would use Healthlink Advocates, Inc. services again in a heartbeat!”
Yorktown Heights, NY
As a new mother, working full-time, I found myself having difficulty finding a healthy balance in my life. After working with Lucille I was empowered to compartmentalize my life. Taking one day at a time to reduce the overwhelming feeling of trying to be the best mother and employee I could possibly be without neglecting my own well-being. Lucille is a calm, compassionate woman who gave me peace of mind and coached me along the way to finding a balanced physical, emotional, and spiritual lifestyle.
Amy in Summit, NJ
I have multiple chronic conditions that has led me to be disabled for most of my life. Due to our fragmented system of healthcare that is filled with nothing but red-tape, I have struggled for years to receive the care that I need. It is hard enough living and coping with my disability, but the added burden of fighting with the insurance company and not being able to find the right doctors was just overwhelming. My family would try to help, but most of the time they couldn’t get anywhere, too. I was so fed up with the whole system, that I just accepted that this is the way it is and there was nothing I could do about it. That is, until my sister found me a nurse advocate.
I had never heard of a nurse advocate before and I had no idea what they did. At first, I was skeptical. I have had so many people try to help before and they never did. I thought this was going to be like all the other times, nothing but empty promises. I agreed to give it a try and I am so glad I did.
When I first met Lorie, I knew she was different. She listened to me, understood where I was coming from and knew what course of action was needed. Lorie really cared about helping me and saw me as more than just a client. Lorie was able to find the specialists that I needed, she tackled my insurance issues and coached and supported me when I needed it. She helped me make tough medical decisions, she spoke with my doctors, she navigated the healthcare system for me and made sure that I understood everything each step of the way. Lorie did more than just advocate for me, she made my life easier and less overwhelming for both me and my family.
Without reservation, I would recommend Lorie to anyone I know. Lorie doesn’t give empty promises, she gives results. I’m so lucky to have Lorie in my life. I hope that anyone that needs help with their healthcare has the opportunity to see Lorie. Trust me, you won’t regret working with Lorie!
“Lorie Gardner and Healthlink Advocates helped our family quickly gain control of a chaotic and stressful situation when my elderly father was admitted to a hospital, rehabilitation center and ultimately a long-term facility. Lorie started with a face-to-face meeting to assess our situation and recommended we contact an elder care attorney, which turned out to be priceless advice. Lorie then helped us for several months, visiting dad to assess his status, meeting with his health care providers, offering us care advice and handling a myriad of details regarding doctor appointments and medications. If you and your family are feeling overwhelmed by a family health crisis I highly recommend calling Lorie, who will compassionately and efficiently help you care for your loved one.”
Paul in Oakland, NJ
"I never knew what a Health Advocate was until my 44 year old brother sustained a traumatic brain injury last year which sent him into a coma and subsequently a long and very complicated recovery. Now I think THANK GOD people like Lorie are out there helping families like ours navigate the dysfunctional world of healthcare and insurance. I live 3000 miles away and am not able to be present as much as my East Coast family so hiring Lorie was a way for me to help them carry the burden. She has met with many members of the medical team - nurses, doctors, social workers and I found that at the second hospital the social worker appreciated having a professional involved in the conversations. Most importantly, when emotions are running high in our family at different decision making points, Lorie has been a great sounding board and has a knack for getting us all calmed down and moving in the same direction - I call her our neutral third party. Caring for a sick family member has to be up there with the biggest stresses in life and few of us have all the knowledge and tools we need to manage it. Having an advocate is a huge help and a pressure valve. If you have the budget, I would highly recommend hiring a Health Advocate like Lorie.”
Health Link Advocates (HLA) are a professional and committed group. Recently, we hired their services and they demonstrated how high their standards are.
We are so appreciative of Lucille Plantemoli for her understanding, expertise and drive. Her diligence made it possible for us to focus on our mothers care. Asking the right questions to the medical community made the difference.
Had it not been for Lucille Plantemoli and HLA I am confident we would have had a different outcome.
Lorie has been an absolute Godsend for my mom and I! After trying for years to navigate through the complicated healthcare system without much luck, Lorie was able to locate resources for my mom, find qualified specialists, and was able to help with insurance issues. Lorie is more than just a typical nurse advocate; Lorie coached us through making tough medical decisions and was supportive of our care decisions. Lorie listens, is compassionate and most importantly, she knows her stuff. I would recommend Lorie to anyone that needs a nurse advocate!
Lorie Gardner is an amazing advocate. I don't know what I would have done without her expert guidance and advocacy assistance. My mother had a stroke and needed rehab at a local facility. I had extreme difficulty getting her care plan in place and getting the correct care services at the facility. Having Lorie on my side - helped me enormously to straighten this out. Her advocacy services are caring and personalized. Definitely do not go this alone - her help is invaluable and will keep your sanity as you navigate through the maze of healthcare - particularly while caring for an elderly parent or family member during a very stressful time. Thank you Lorie.
I was facing a brick wall trying to get the proper care for my elderly mother. With Lorie Gardner’s advice, I was able to get over the Medicare wall and was successful at a second level appeal. My mother is continuing to get the care and rehabilitation she needs at the subacute facility instead of being discharged too early.