Inner Strength RN Health Advocates: Nurses Offering a Personalized Patient‑Centered Approach

By Mary Baron, RN, MS, iRNPA and Charlene Baron, RN, BSN, iRNPA

The Need for Patient Advocacy

Have you or a loved one ever felt like you did not know what questions to ask when you go to your doctor? Or felt overwhelmed navigating numerous appointments with specialists? Are you feeling lost because you feel like you have tried everything and still are not getting better? RN Patient Advocacy seeks to decrease the possible side effects of uncoordinated care.

People will admit to stories that range from feeling overwhelmed and confused in the medical system to reports of unwelcomed drug interactions or hospital-acquired infections. People can feel like a collection of symptoms or the label that their diagnosis brings. The trend within our society can at times appear as a “SICK” care system instead of a “HEALTH” care system.

Bridging the Gaps

Nurse Patient Advocacy’s goal is to bridge the numerous gaps in care people are experiencing every day. These gaps can lead to undesirable outcomes. We bridge these gaps and connect the dots in your care on many levels. These include but are not limited to facilitating communication between providers, health education about your unique situation, helping you to feel confident in your medications, and bridging different paradigms of care including allopathic, integrative and functional. We also bridge the gaps that can be present when a family member is ill and there is either a gap in distance or understanding amongst family members. We get to truly meet our clients where they are at and provide support around what matters most to them.

Nurses as Patient Advocates

In general, an advocate is someone that supports and helps another to express his or her needs. Many can recall times when having the support of someone to help advocate on their behalf has made all the difference, especially when facing a difficult medical situation. As healthcare costs and confusion within the healthcare system rise, the need for guidance from a supportive professional relationship grows. More specifically, nurses are adopting this title and filling a need that is becoming increasingly more apparent. Advocacy is a core tenet within the nursing profession. We learn how to first assess our patient’s needs and then how to communicate them as effectively as possible.

An RN Patient Advocate is a highly skilled clinical nurse who can empower you in the healthcare system, teach you what is happening, work closely with you and your family to reach your health goals and focus on collaboration with your current medical providers. This helps to prevent medical errors and save costs for unnecessary procedures. We provide health and wellness coaching – we teach you and your family about the relationship of your current illness to your whole medical history. A more in-depth understanding can lead to better health overall. Most importantly, we teach you and your family how to be more effective health advocates for yourselves.

Inner Strength RN Health Advocates LLC – A Personalized Patient-Centered Approach RN Patient Advocacy provides an answer to the question: How do we again focus on whole-person wellbeing and bring caring and compassion back into the world of healing? As RN Patient Advocates, this is the center of our focus. We are answering the call to bring medicine and healing to a personalized, patient-centered approach. More specifically, at Inner Strength RN Health Advocates LLC, we seek to first develop a clear understanding of your unique situation.

Although we investigate, research and teach you about your medical diagnosis, we also take a strengths-based approach to your wellbeing. Our goal is to empower you in your own health so that you become your own health advocate.  Instead of focusing on what is WRONG with you we shift the focus to what is RIGHT with you. We not only assist you in getting the most out of your doctor’s appointments, but to also inspire you to realize the healing that can take place between those appointments, within yourself in your daily life. Finding the right surgeon and care team can mean the difference in your care, but so can reawakening the spark and connections that bring you joy.

When to contact us

Frequently, people ask us when someone should call a Patient Advocate. The answer we give is ANY time. We will help someone at any place in his or her healing journey, and we truly love to work with someone or a family during the prevention phase. Oftentimes, prevention is qualified as getting the proper screenings, and while screenings are important, we feel true prevention means having an awareness of one’s attitudes, habits and beliefs about their health. The day-to-day things we do for ourselves can make the biggest difference.

Other times to consider calling us: 

  • Healthcare situations that are complex and causing confusion
  • Understanding new medical diagnoses, current healthcare treatments, medications and their potential risks
  • Transition planning for various stages and levels of care, including in-home care and assisted living transitions
  • Clients living independently or in a facility with no local family who are in need of a local advocate for their well-being
  • Challenging family dynamics around healthcare decision making

About us

Mary Baron, RN, MS, iRNPA and Charlene Baron, RN, BSN, iRNPA are co-owners of Inner Strength RN Health Advocates LLC. We two sisters together bring a varied nursing background, and a consistent passion to meet people where they are and support them in their own health journey.  We both gained specialized training in RN Patient Advocacy from the University of Arizona’s School of Nursing. In addition, we are both Roots Wellbeing Facilitators, a program that emphasizes mind-body, strengths-based strategies to enhance one’s personal wellbeing. Together, our passion for advocacy stems not just from their nursing careers, but also from the personal experiences we have had on our own health journeys and supporting our family members during illness. We are excited to bring this passion to our Collier and Lee County neighbors.

  • Mary received a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from the University of Notre Dame, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Johns Hopkins University and Masters of Nursing Administration from Simmons College. Following a change in careers from public accounting to nursing, her nursing experience includes 8 years in the Cardiac ICU and 3 years as a Director of Patient Services, all at Boston Children’s Hospital.
  • Charlene received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology from the University of Notre Dame, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree from New York University and a certificate in Mind-Body-Spirit nursing from Massachusetts General Hospital Institute of Health Professionals.  Charlene practiced long-term acute care nursing at Spaulding Hospital, Cambridge in Cambridge, MA, community and chronic disease nurse case management at the South End Community Health Center in Boston, MA and Nurse Care Coordination at Long-Term Solutions in Natick, MA.