Consumer Health Advocacy

Learn how to navigate the complexities of the health care system and advocate directly for patients with a Certificate in Consumer Health Advocacy from UW–Madison.


Is this program right for you?

Help people get the care they need with a Capstone Certificate in Consumer Health Advocacy at the University of Wisconsin–Madison.

The field of patient advocacy is expected to grow steadily in the next decade as more people seek to improve health outcomes, reduce costs, improve quality, and humanize the health care experience for patients and clinicians.

At UW–Madison, you are part of a dynamic and thoughtful learning community that makes a strong, positive impact on the well-being of patients and on the health care industry as a whole. Our educational approach encourages hands-on learning. UW–Madison offers the nation’s only certificate program with an experiential Patient Advocacy Clinic.

Two certificate tracks allow you to focus on health care advocacy at the patient level or at the policy level. Whether you hope to switch careers, deepen your professional practice, or gain direct patient service before graduate school, the certificate in Consumer Health Advocacy allows you to explore next steps.

Is this program right for you?

Help people get the care they need with a Capstone Certificate in Consumer Health Advocacy at the University of Wisconsin–Madison.

The field of patient advocacy is expected to grow steadily in the next decade as more people seek to improve health outcomes, reduce costs, improve quality, and humanize the health care experience for patients and clinicians.

At UW–Madison, you are part of a dynamic and thoughtful learning community that makes a strong, positive impact on the well-being of patients and on the health care industry as a whole. Our educational approach encourages hands-on learning. UW–Madison offers the nation’s only certificate program with an experiential Patient Advocacy Clinic.

Two certificate tracks allow you to focus on health care advocacy at the patient level or at the policy level. Whether you hope to switch careers, deepen your professional practice, or gain direct patient service before graduate school, the certificate in Consumer Health Advocacy allows you to explore next steps.

Admissions Requirements

All applicants must:

  • Have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution; international applicants must have the equivalent of a U.S. baccalaureate degree.

To apply:

  • Online application to UW–Madison as University Special Student.
  • Transcripts.
  • CV/Resume.
  • Personal statement.
  • Contact information for two references.
  • One letter of recommendation.

Applications accepted for fall or spring enrollment. We are holistic and selective, and consider myriad factors when evaluating applications.

Program Highlights

  • Our Consumer Health Advocacy certificate program is flexible. You can choose to earn your certificate online or through a blended approach with online and in-person coursework.
  • You earn your certificate quickly, so you can start your new career in patient advocacy sooner. With our flexible course options, you can earn your certificate in just 12–18 months.
  • You learn from the best: our faculty and staff at the Center for Patient Partnership use their personal experiences and years of expertise in the field of patient advocacy to help you navigate medical, legal, and insurance systems to provide patients with the best care possible.

How You'll Learn

  • Complete the entire certificate online, following a two-day in-person orientation. Or you can work both in person and online.
  • Join a dynamic, interactive, interdisciplinary learning community.
  • Learn in a state-of-the-art environment with a faculty that prioritizes individualized guidance.
  • Provide advocacy to patients through a web-based database and video conferencing with faculty supervisors.

Sample Curriculum

  • Introduction to Patient Advocacy
  • Applied Advocacy Experience (Intro)
  • Applied Advocacy Experience (Advanced)
  • Models of Advocacy (Includes Capstone Project/Paper)

Job Outlook

Top Job Titles
  • Clinical Liaison
  • Patient Navigator
  • Patient Advocate
  • Nurse Navigator

Market Salary
$56K in 2018

Job Postings
2,171 in 2018

Source: Burning Glass Technologies: Labor Insight. 2019.
Burning Glass Technologies’ Market Salary is an estimated expected salary. Market Salary uses machine learning algorithms to account for experience, skill, and education among other factors that may impact individual salaries.

Ready to learn more about Consumer Health Advocacy?
View the UW-Madison Guide

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Connect with our enrollment coaches

Our friendly, knowledgeable enrollment coaches are here to answer your questions. Contact an enrollment coach to:

  • Learn how to make this program work with your life/schedule
  • Verify credit transfers
  • Get help with your application
  • Determine if financial aid is available

Visit with our coaches on campus or at an upcoming student fair in your area. Search student fairs & events

Connect with a coach