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Surgical Innovation
April 2017

Expanding Burn Care Knowledge in a Rural Region Through Project Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Telehealth, University of Utah Healthcare, Salt Lake City
  • 2Burn Trauma Intensive Care Unit, University of Utah Hospitals, Salt Lake City
  • 3Department of Surgery, University of Utah, Salt Lake City
  • 4Web and Social Media Editor, JAMA Surgery

Copyright 2017 American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved.

JAMA Surg. 2017;152(4):401-402. doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2016.5747

Project ECHO (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes) is a dynamic health care delivery platform for rural and underserved populations pioneered at the University of New Mexico in 2004 by Sanjeev Arora, MD, a hepatologist. He observed that thousands of individuals with hepatitis C (HCV) across rural New Mexico were not receiving treatment owing to a shortage of HCV specialists in the state and long waits at the few facilities that did treat HCV. These observations inspired the creation of Project ECHO, with the goal of providing primary care clinicians with the specialized medical knowledge needed to effectively address, treat, and cure individuals with HCV.1,2 The HCV ECHO experience was replicated in Utah in 2011 by Terry Box, MD.3 The Senate recently passed the Expanding Capacity for Health Outcomes Act, which promotes ECHO as a model for rural health care.4