The Health Navigator Foundation
Bridging the gap between Hospital and Home
Founded in 2018, the Health Navigator Foundation supports patients facing the need for complex life saving surgeries. With a health navigator by your side, we provide the essential resources of housing, food, parking and gas during the critical transition from hospital to discharge to recovery.
We believe that everyone deserves equitable access to resources that achieve optimal health outcomes. By addressing social determinants of health, we empower recipients of navigation services on their path to recovery and well-being.
Since 2018, Health Navigator Foundation...
What We Do
We are there to help navigate you through your recovery post-transplant or LVAD following your discharge from the hospital or rehabilitation facility.
- Our team understands the nuances of clinic days and is available to navigate you and your caregiver during procedures, laboratories, and clinic appointments.
- We know your clinic schedule can be complex and overwhelming, and our goal is to help you and your caregiver feel confident in navigating your medical follow-up.
- You may have had to relocate temporarily following your transplant, and navigating the local community may be overwhelming and a source of stress. We are here to help guide you so you can focus on your recovery.
- We also maintain constant communication with your medical care team to help bridge any gaps.
For individuals with qualifying income levels, we provide essential resources to allow those facing life-saving surgeries and their caregivers to focus on their recovery rather than worrying about ancillary costs of their illness. Patients with qualifying income levels are additionally offered basic resources including:
- Food/meal support
- Parking vouchers
- Gas cards and/or Lyft rides
- Short-term lodging
Dealing with organ failure can be daunting and filled with uncertainty. We have found that individuals and caregivers in this position benefit greatly from speaking to someone who has been through the process of organ transplant or advanced therapies and can describe their first-hand unique experience.
Our peer mentors are in the unique position to provide feedback and encouragement because of their experience.
The Peer Mentor Program consists of Transplant and LVAD recipients and their caregivers who have completed training to mentor patients and their caregivers going through the process. Peer Mentor roles include:
- Sharing their personal experience with the process
- Explaining their recovery and life after the transplant procedure
- Offering reassurance, emotional and educational support and non-medical guidance
No Cost to You
Who We Are
KRISTA RAMONAS, M.D.
Founder & Medical Director
DEBORAH FRANZON, M.D.
Director of Clinical Research
NINA WINTERSTEIN, LCSW
Nina holds an undergraduate and master’s degree from UC Berkeley and is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. She began her social work career in 2014, moving into direct care with transplant patients in 2019. Nina is dedicated to supporting patients and their caregivers during the critical period following their transplant or LVAD. Being able to witness the transformations of patients and help facilitate connections between them is incredibly rewarding. Nina believes in the power of peer connections—through the peer mentor program and monthly support group, she fosters nurturing connections where individuals can find solace, understanding, and strength during their recovery and beyond.
Sir John Mactaggart & Lady Helena Mactaggart
Founders & Board Members