A Guide to Developing Assistance Programs for Health Care Consumers

The Health Rights Hotline, based in Sacramento, California, wasestablished in 1997 as a model to demonstrate and assess how anindependent assistance program can help consumers successfully accesscare, navigate the health care system, and improve the system for allhealth care consumers.

Based on the experiences of the Health Rights Hotline, this Guideprovides a framework and specific steps that organizations may take to set up a consumer assistance program. Areas covered include program design, staffing and training, outreach, collecting and analyzing data, program evaluation, and financing.

The Appendices contain a variety of documents that can be used as templatesfor developing budgets and requests for proposals, job descriptions,program protocols, staff and/or volunteer training programs,memorandums of understanding, and reports from data collected.