UC Davis Health launches digital inclusion program

(SACRAMENTO)

UC Davis Health has launched a first-in-the-nation Digital Inclusion Program to bring much-needed technology, connectivity, and health care to underserved populations.

The initiative is a collaboration with Verizon Business that aims to bridge the digital gap and reduce health disparities. The goal is to provide underserved populations with free smartphones, tablets and connectivity through hot spots to help them access telehealth care and social services.

“The Digital Inclusion Program allows us to expand our presence in some of our most vulnerable populations, allowing them to access resources and critical care in the palm of their hand,” said Ashish Atreja, CIO and chief digital health officer of UC Davis Health. “As a world leader in digital health, UC Davis Health is again breaking the digital divide by creating access for underserved and rural patient populations.”

Ashish AtrejaThe Digital Inclusion Program allows us to expand our presence in some of our most vulnerable populations, allowing them to access resources and critical care in the palm of their hand.”—Ashish Atreja

Verizon Business is providing the connectivity and UC Davis Health will test different ways to improve the telehealth experience for rural and underserved populations. Moreover, patients using the technology will also be able to access to social services and other needed resources.

“Secure and reliable connectivity is the bedrock of any telemedicine solution,” said Scott Lawrence, senior vice president of global solutions at Verizon Business. “Working with UC Davis Health, a pioneer in this field, we are helping connect underserved patient populations with health care services, an effort that aligns with our work to reduce health disparities through technology.”

Keisuke Nakagawa, director of innovation at the UC Davis Health Digital CoLab, said: "It's critical that our programs address the social and digital determinants of health, which are increasingly becoming a key factor in accessing care and improving health outcomes for the most vulnerable populations we serve."

UC Davis Health serves one of the most diverse patient populations in the nation, providing care for a region covering 6 million people in 33 counties, across 65,000 square miles.

As part of the program, Verizon Business will provide UC Davis Health with a wide variety of connected solutions to enable UC Davis Health to deliver care to vulnerable patients including the incarcerated, unhoused and elderly.

“Providing care to underserved communities has always been a struggle, made even more severe by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Atreja added. “The Digital Inclusion Program is just another step in us providing connectivity and access to our underserved communities. “I look forward to the impact it will have on creating a more inclusive and equitable care experience in the health community.”

Atreja will be among the speakers who will discuss the new program at next week’s Future & Health at ViVE conference in Los Angeles.

Comments (0)

No login
gif