The Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation (BMSF) www.bms.com awarded the ECHO Institute http://echo.unm.edu a five year $10 million grant as part of the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center http://hsc.unm.edu program.
The goal is to expand and apply the “Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes” (ECHO) model of telementoring and collaborative care to cancer and to provide quality cancer care for rural and underserved populations to patients living in the U.S and Africa.
Project ECHO is working to increase access to the best practice cancer care for vulnerable populations in the U.S and worldwide. The program pairs doctors with providers in community hospitals and health centers with the National Cancer Institute’s www.cancer.gov Comprehensive Cancer Care Centers and academic medical centers.
The Foundation’s funding will enable the ECHO Institute to significantly expand its footprint in cancer both domestically and internationally and train more partners or hubs on how to implement the ECHO model.
The goals for the five year partnership with the Foundation are to:
- Strengthen the cancer health system through training and capacity building
- Strengthen connections between cancer centers and communities
- Include Community Health Workers as a bridge to populations less likely to engage with the healthcare system
- Engage the community of cancer ECHO experts in an ongoing collaborative to share learnings, best practices, and innovations
- Evaluate the impact of the ECHO model as a means to improve health outcomes and the quality of life for cancer patients
- Work with leading organizations in cancer and healthcare payment experts to incorporate ECHO into cancer prevention, screening, treatment, palliation, and survivorship in the U.S.
BMSF President John Damonti reports, “Project Echo is a proven approach to breaking down barriers to high quality specialty care for medically underserved populations facing a number of serious diseases. This partnership will support the pilot application and spread of ECHO’s telementoring and collaborative model at this time to cancer.”