With an aim to increase health and alleviate health disparities affecting sexual and gender minorities in Indiana, the Indiana University Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health – Indianapolis (IUPUI) will launch an LGBTQ+ ECHO Teleclinic at IUPUI, based on the Project ECHO (Enhancing Community Health Outcomes) model. In partnership with clinicians from the Eskenazi Transgender Health and Wellness Program, the Riley Gender Health Program, and the IU School of Medicine, this ECHO is the first of its kind in the state and is funded in part through the IU Responding to the Addictions Crisis Grand Challenge.
The Project ECHO model, originally developed in New Mexico, transforms the way education and knowledge are delivered to reach more people in rural and underserved communities. This low-cost, high-impact intervention is accomplished by linking inter-disciplinary specialty teams with multiple primary care providers using Zoom videoconferencing technology. Experts mentor and share their expertise across a virtual network via case-based learning, enabling patients to receive treatment for common, complex conditions in their own communities with providers they trust.
The LGBTQ+ ECHO Teleclinic’s inaugural cohort will bring together a network of medical and mental health care providers and faculty expertise to increase clinician access to information vital for providing culturally-responsible, comprehensive, primary care for transgender, gender non-binary, and sexual minority patients. The cohort will also discuss topics related to mental health, hormone therapy, surgical care, and socioeconomic considerations.
Each 90-minute teleclinic will consist of two main components: a brief lecture covering a topic related to LGBTQ+ care and two to three case-based discussions of patients submitted by participating providers. The first LGBTQ+ ECHO Teleclinic will begin on Wednesday, September 12. Subsequent teleclinics are scheduled every second and fourth Wednesday for the duration of one year. For more information, please contact ECHO program coordinator, Ms. Andrea Janota.