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Zoom Conferencing Technology Helps Pass Project ECHO Bill


December 29, 2016

Even though selfie and messaging apps get the bulk of attention in the media, there are actually people that use the developments that are taking place in ICT to do some impressive work. Case in point is Project ECHO (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes) at the University of New Mexico Health Science Center, which was established as a model to continue education by linking together communities in rural and underserved areas with hubs of specialist teams and primary care providers and educators. These groups are brought together using Zoom video conferencing in weekly teleECHO clinics.

Project ECHO says it is a movement to, "Demonopolize knowledge and amplify the capacity to provide best practice care for underserved people all over the world," a truly inspiring goal.

When the Senate passed the Project ECHO bill, it validated the project in New Mexico, but more importantly it will boost care access for rural populations through telehealth training. The bill, called the Expanding Capacity for Health Outcomes (ECHO) Act was approved unanimously by the Senate.

Introduced Senators Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) and Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), the goal was to give rural areas access to healthcare through continuing medical education using telehealth technology.

The model at the University of New Mexico was first introduced in 2013 by Sanjeev Arora, M.D., a professor in UNM’s Department of Internal Medicine. He said, “Medical knowledge is exploding, but it’s often not traveling the last mile to ensure that patients get the right care in the right place at the right time. If we can leverage technology to spread best practices through case-based learning and mentoring of providers, we can move knowledge—instead of patients—to get better care to rural and underserved communities across the country."

This knowledge is being moved using Zoom's video conferencing technology, which provides a platform that allows participants to share information freely and an easy to use solution that makes it possible to fully collaborate with scale and capacity that delivers high availability.

The company also provides a highly secure platform with Secure Socket Layer (SSL) encryption, AES 256-bits encryption and HTTPS access to ensure the information conferencing participants are sharing in telehealth is always protected.

"Zoom is proud to be a part of this important effort to reduce rates of chronic disease and improve healthcare in rural areas. We have worked with Project ECHO for years, and we're pleased that they will be able to scale their programs far and wide. It is rewarding to see our secure, easy, compliant video communications platform help this important mission," said Eric S. Yuan, Founder and CEO of Zoom.




Edited by Maurice Nagle

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