Connecting Specialists with Rural Healthcare Providers
Project ECHO® (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes) is a movement to demonopolize knowledge and amplify the capacity to provide best practice care for underserved people all over the world. The model connects primary care providers and specialists on a live, virtual platform to share knowledge and expand treatment capacity in rural communities.
Using proven adult learning techniques and interactive video technology, the ECHO Model™ connects groups of community providers with specialists at centers of excellence in regular real-time collaborative sessions. These sessions, designed around case-based learning and mentorship, help community providers gain the expertise required to provide needed services. The ECHO model functions on a “hub and spoke” model.
The ECHO model supports ongoing learning and assistance for healthcare professionals to improve patient care delivery. Participants are encouraged to attend as many sessions as possible to get the full benefits of the program.
Implementing the ECHO model can help:
- Reduce the need for patients to travel outside of their communities
- Create a supportive Community of Practice through knowledge sharing and relationship development
- Use technology to leverage scarce provider resources
- Provide strategies for providing the best possible care to patients in rural communities
- Increase provider satisfaction and efficacy
- Improve patient outcomes and quality of care