Why Pink Ribbon Consulting
As a Product Trainer for a Global Breast Care Manufacturer,
I trained Professional Fitters about the nuances of selecting specific breast care products to match a patient’s fitting needs.
We practice fittings on live survivor models, who share their breast cancer journey with the group and allow these ladies to ‘practice’ on them.
A dealer product training class includes breast care industry updates regarding trends and changes in insurance coverage. Also included is learning the critical documentation requirements similar to what a doctor documents in your medical chart.
A Fitter must attend classes in order to sit for a national exam and become Certified and Certified Fitters must also earn continuing education credits to maintain their Certification.
As a Certified Mastectomy Fitter, I once had a patient burst into tears when she called her insurance provider about her benefits and the agent on the other end of the phone asked her ‘what is a mastectomy?’. Mary was a walk-in patient and we never had a chance to verify her benefits, which we did for our patients with appointments.
But we also encouraged our customers to find out for themselves, so they understood which products were covered by their insurance provider and have realistic expectations. Every boutique wants you to know your benefits, but it can be frustrating to have to make the call and explain what you are asking about.
As a Luxury Lingerie Stylist, I had a lovely, 60-ish year old woman walk in asking me for a nursing bra…for herself. She was very embarrassed and explained she was preparing to have breast cancer radiation seed therapy (Brachytherapy APBI) and was told to find a front closure bra with ‘easy access’ to her site. Her next stop was a maternity store but, thankfully, I could refer her to a specialty boutique.
Can you imagine? I was so angry that an Oncology team, associated with a highly regarded cancer institute, was completely unaware of specialty bras for this patient or that she had insurance benefits to cover their expense. This is common among breast cancer patients’ care teams.
Every Fitter has had experiences where a post-mastectomy patient comes in wearing a bra stuffed with a sock full of birdseed or other seed-like products, to try and simulate a lost breast or part of a breast. Make sure you are giving yourself the benefit of specialty products that your insurance may cover.
Often, it is only by chance or luck that a patient finds out they have benefits from Medicare or insurance, which covers a vast array of products that can change the way you look and feel about yourself. As a Professional Fitter, we have all had the hugs that mean we made a difference in that patient’s life–leaving with beautiful bras and a breast form that make her look and feel amazing!
I am familiar with all the manufacturers and their unique products, that may not be given as a choice to you, depending on what boutiques are in your geographic area. This is the day of the internet and every product is a click away!
But there is no substitute for the caring, hands-on experience of a Professional Fitter. If you don’t have a boutique close to you, I can help you find the closest one…but do not go without making an appointment and bringing a correctly filled out prescription from your doctor, so you can take products home with you.
If your doctor is not sure how to fill out the Rx for breast care products, please have them call me. The Rx has very specific criteria for your insurance to cover products and without them specified on the Rx, it could delay delivery of items to you.