Desiring to provide primary care for Oklahomans living in rural areas, the Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences is examining how the use of video technology is bridging the gap.

It all starts with Project ECHO.

Developed at the University of New Mexico in 2013, health care providers in underserved areas were given the ability to consult with specialists on patient cases through video teleconferencing, which allows primary care physicians, nurses and other health care professionals to provide the type of specialty care they wouldn’t get elsewhere.

Dr. Sanjeev Arora, who founded the Project ECHO model in New Mexico and helped develop the first teleECHO clinic in response to concerns about hepatitis C, will headline the first Project ECHO Summit at OSU Center for Health Sciences in Tulsa.

The Project ECHO Summit will be held at 9 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 29, at the Tandy Conference Center in the A.R. and Marylouise Tandy Medical Academic Building, 1111 W. 17th St.

Through Arora’s work, Project ECHO has grown to cover more than 60 disease areas at 280 academic medical centers in 34 countries.

The OSU Center for Health Sciences began a similar program of its own that has now expanded into nearly a dozen health care lines, focusing on everything from substance abuse, infectious disease and mental health to HIV and metabolic diseases.

The summit, which will feature health care professionals, legislators and education leaders, will study the impact Project ECHO has had on the state.


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