Bachelor of Science in Health Science: Patient Navigation Specialization


Professionals in the emerging field of patient advocacy, health education, wellness and community health collaborate with patients and clinicians to improve health outcomes. They steer patients successfully through the complex health care system and any subsequent treatment plans, while also possessing the skills necessary to safely and effectively follow patients across the care continuum.

The Patient Navigation specialization prepares professionals who understand the barriers to effective care, such as poverty, insurance communication and information barriers; maintain an understanding of current health care trends and issues, and guide patients, caregivers and family members through the prescribed course of treatment.

Patient Navigation professionals work hand-in-glove with patients, clinicians and administrators to ensure efficient and effective care is delivered.

Key Benefits and Highlights

  • Hybrid format for Majors - The Patient Navigation courses will be offered online to serve students during junior and senior years. The remainder of the coursework will be offered at Misericordia University in a traditional/hybrid format.
  • Features a fieldwork experience in which students observe, interact with patients and other health care professionals, participate in the effective progression of patients throughout the care process, and learn about effective patient-practitioner communications
  • Strong and growing market demand
    • Currently a 50% increase between 2016-2024 in the need for patient navigators in health care systems, insurance companies and physician offices.
    • The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) considers the field of patient navigation a “bright outlook’’ occupation because “it is projected to have a large number of job openings and is a new and emerging occupation,’’ according to the Occupational Information Network
    • In Pennsylvania, the state Department of Labor & Industry predicts an average of more than 1,300 job openings annually in patient navigation and related fields, according to Hanover Research.


Patient Navigation Major Course Requirements

BIO 121 OR
BIO 211
Human Structure & Function I OR
Anatomy & Physiology I
4
BIO 122 OR
BIO 212
Human Structure & Function II OR
Anatomy & Physiology II
4
MI 106Medical Terminology1
HCM 101Introduction to Health Systems3
HCI 110Introduction to Health Informatics3
HCM 371Health Care Reimbursement & Finance3
HCM 401Managed Care3
HCM 406Current Issues in Health Care3
HP 125Introduction to Patient Navigation3
HP 135Health Behavior Change Application3
HP 225Advanced Care Coordination3
HP 235Prevention and Chronic Disease3
HP 325Patient Navigation Fieldwork2
HP 200Healthy Lifestyles3
HP 241Fundamentals of Food & Nutrition3
HP 999CPR Certification0
GER 241Introduction to Social Gerontology3
SOC 122Social Problems
Total Credits50

Program Goals/Outcomes

Program Goals

  • Prepare students to provide patient navigation services embedded in the values of justice and hospitality through physical, emotional, and social support to patients following a treatment plan
  • Students will be able to successfully communicate and interview patients to assess barriers to care
  • Students will value the need to maintain an understanding of current health care trends and issues that impact the patient navigators’ ability to provide care/assistance
  • Students will have the skill set to guide patients, caregivers, and family members through a treatment plan with the goal of improving patient outcomes.
  • Students will Identify and explain health resources including publicly funded health insurance programs and health delivery systems

Students completing the BS in Health Science will:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the patient care process from a social justice perspective.
  • Demonstrate critical reasoning skills in the patient care process by conducting a client assessment, identifying functional problems, and developing an appropriate intervention plan.
  • Interact and communicate professionally and courteously with clients while demonstrating the necessary clinical competencies required within their respective health care discipline.

4-Year Course Sequence

Year 1

Fall

Spring

BIO 121

or

BIO 211

Human Structure & Function I

(CORE)

or

Anatomy & Physiology I

4

BIO 122

or

BIO 212

Human Structure & Function II

or

Anatomy & Physiology II

4

HP 125

Introduction to Patient Navigation

3

HCM 101

Intro to Health Systems

3

ENG/HIS/RLS

151- University Writing Seminar - CORE

3

MTH 115

Statistics (CORE)

3

PSY 123

Intro to Psychology

CORE

3

ENG/HIS/RLS

CORE

3

MTH

Math Core-Group A- based on SAT’s - CORE

3

MI 106

Medical Terminology

(on line)

1

16

14

Year 2

ENG/HIS/RLS

CORE

3

ENG/HIS/RLS

CORE

3

HP 135

Health Behavior Change Application

3

HP 225

Advanced Care Coordination

3

FA

CORE

3

HP 235

Prevention and Chronic Disease

3

PHL 100

Intro to Philosophy

CORE

3

---------------

Free Elective

3

SOC 101

Comparative Sociology CORE

3

PHL

CORE


3

HP 999

CPR Certification

0

15

15

Year 3

Fall

Spring

Natural Science core

CORE (3* or 4 cr.)
(cannot be BIO 121 or 211)
*If 3 cr. core, may need additional 1 cr. free elective)

4

HCM 401

Managed Care

Pre-req.- HCM 101 and 371

3

HCM 371

Health Care Reimbursement and Finance

Pre-req.-HC 101,HP 125

3

HCM 406

Current Issues and Trends in Healthcare

Pre-req.-HCM 101, HCM 371

3

HP 200

Healthy Lifestyles

3

HCI 110

Introduction to

Health Informatics (online)

3

SOC 122

Social Problems

3

----------

Free Elective

3

----------

Free Elective

3

----------

Free Elective

3

16

15

Year 4

ENG/HIS/RLS

CORE

3

FA

CORE

3

--------------

Free Elective

3

ENG/HIS/RLS

CORE

3

---------------

Free Elective

3

----------------

Free Elective

3

GER 241

Introduction to Social Gerontology

3

---------------

Free Elective

3

HP 241

Fundamentals of Food and Nutrition

3

HP 325

Patient Navigation Fieldwork

2

15

14

NOTE:
Graduation Requirements: Students must successfully complete 2 writing intensive (WI) courses, and the technical competency requirements (TC 000).

6/15/16

Admissions Requirements

The minimum criteria for admission into the Bachelor of Science in Health Science: Patient Navigation Specialization program as a freshman student are:

  • Class rank in the top half of the high school graduating class and/or a cumulative 2.5 grade point average
  • Minimum SAT requirement of 850 (combined Math and Critical Reading) if taken prior to March 5, 2016, or a combined 930 if taken after March 5, 2016. In lieu of the SAT, the ACT results may be presented with a minimum required composite score of 18.

Successful transfer applicants will typically hold a minimum collegiate grade point average of 2.0, having completed at least 15 college credits. Please note the above listed requirements are general, and that each application is looked at thoroughly, taking into account individual grades, academic rigor, and other factors.

Course Descriptions

BIO 121 Human Structure and Function I, 4 credits

A study of the human body structure and function with emphasis on its cellular control and selected systems involving dynamic control, support and movement.
Lecture: 3 hours. Laboratory: 2 hours.

BIO 122 Human Structure and Function II, 4 credits

This course is a study of the human body structure and function with special emphasis on its ability to circulate fluids, absorb and excrete, and reproduce.
Lecture: 3 hours. Laboratory: 2 hours.
Prerequisite BIO 121

BIO 211/212 Anatomy and Physiology I & II, 4 credits each

A detailed study of the structure and same function of the human body. Emphasis on physiology phenomena and concepts.
Lecture: 3 hours. Laboratory: 2 hours.
Prerequisites: No prerequisite for BIO 211. Prerequisite for BIO 212 is BIO 211 or permission from instructor

GER 341 Substance Abuse and the Aged, 3 credits

Focuses on the use patterns, diagnosis, and treatment methods specific to the aged substance abuser. Issues examined will include misuse and abuse of prescription drugs, behavior and risk factors, factors related to underdiagnosis, and relationship to depression and suicide.
Spring/alternate years

HCI 110 Introduction to Health Care Informatics, 3 credits

A comprehensive overview of the emerging field of health care informatics. Students will examine the impact of informatics on health care delivery systems. The use of informatics in health care professions practice, education, research and administration will be explored.

HCM 101 Introduction to Health Systems (3 credits)

The course is designed to give students a basic understanding of the health care system in the United States. It describes the basic components of the delivery system, and examines the history and evolution of the system. Trends in health care management, delivery, and financing are analyzed, including a critical analysis of the system, examining its strengths and weaknesses. The features of Medicare and Medicaid programs, including possible future funding scenarios, are thoroughly examined.

HCM 371 Health Care Reimbursement and Finance, 3 credits

This course provides a broad-based overview of the managerial aspects of health care finance, beginning with a brief review of accounting systems in health care institutions. A comprehensive review of health care reimbursement structures is presented for acute care facilities, nursing homes, rehabilitation facilities, home health, and hospitals. Cost behavior and cost analysis concepts are examined. Budgeting and internal control, including auditing concepts and techniques, are explored. Service volume financial modeling techniques are explained.
Prerequisites: HCM 101, and either ACC 101 or HP 125

HCM 401 Managed Care, 3 credits

This course is designed to give students a comprehensive understanding of managed care in the United States. It describes the environment leading to the development of managed care, its intended purpose, the types of managed care organizations, strengths and weaknesses of managing care, and its impact on consumers and providers.
Prerequisites: HCM 101, HCM 371

HCM 406 Current Issues and Trends in Health Care Management, 3 credits

This is an issues-oriented course that examines the health care delivery system in the United States that reviews the entire continuum of care relative to current trends and recent changes in legislation, market forces, and consumer attitudes and preferences. The key issues confronting health care today will be identified, causes will be examined, and reasonable solutions will be proposed and debated.
Prerequisites: HCM 101, HCM 371 , and either HCM 452 or HP 125

HP 125 Introduction to Patient Navigation (3 credits)

The course orients students to basic navigation skills and professionalism. Students will discusses patient navigation roles and responsibilities and effective communication and problem-solving skills. Navigators will also learn how to locate and evaluate patient resources and learn strategies for working with community agencies, healthcare team members, and organizations that serve patients.

HP 135: Health Behavior Change Application (3 credits)

The course focuses on several behavioral and social science theories, determinants of risk, and ways to link theories to prevention interventions. The course includes exercises in understanding the factors that influence behavior; an overview of the different levels of interventions; a framework to link theory, behavioral determinants and interventions; and small group work to strengthen skills learned in the course.

HP 200 Healthy Lifestyles, 3 credits

This course is designed for any student interested in understanding contemporary issues related to wellness. At the completion of this course the student will be able to describe the concept of wellness and apply this understanding to everyday life. The content will focus on the physical, sexual, intellectual, emotional/psychological, spiritual, occupational, and recreational aspects of wellness. Wellness will be viewed across the lifespan emphasizing multicultural aspects of individuals and families. Appropriate theoretical models will be utilized to enhance understanding of the content presented. Course discussions and assignments will explore individual lifestyles highlighting behaviors of the individuals that impact on personal and community wellness.
Prerequisites: None required, but PSY 123 and SOC 110 strongly recommended

HP 225: Advanced Care Coordination (3 credits)

Healthcare delivery can be very fragmented, which often results in poor health outcomes, patient dissatisfaction, and higher healthcare costs. Coordinated care contributes to patient-centered, high-quality care. This course prepares patient navigators to coordinate care for their clients consistent with Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) guidelines and requirements.

HP 235: Prevention and Chronic Disease (3 credits)

Risk factors that cause disease, preventative measure and recognition of individuals with chronic diseases and how they affect individuals are provided in this course. Health disparities and illness is also a component of the course materials.

HP 241 Fundamentals of Food and Nutrition, 3 credits

This course will focus on a study of the major nutrients found in food including characteristics, functions and metabolism. Interrelationships of nutrients; effects of inadequate and excessive intake; principles of energy metabolism and a study of energy requirements of the individual will be included.

HP 325: Patient Navigation Fieldwork (2 credits)

This course requires fieldwork experiences under direct supervision that includes, observation, interaction with patients/clients and other health care professionals, participation in the effective movement of patients across the care continuum, self-management and enhanced patient-practitioner communication. Students are evaluated based on their performance in these areas.

MI 106 Medical Terminology (1 credit)

Anatomical names of bones and organs of the body and other descriptive terms and their common abbreviations; prefixes and suffixes, proper usage, spelling, and interpretation of terms. Lecture: 1 hour

SOC 122 Social Problems, 3 credits

Presents a critical thinking approach to social problem theories and an examination of factors associated with social problems in contemporary American society.
Prerequisite: SOC 101. Spring only

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