Public Health & Health Sciences Blog

Dr. David Gordon, dean of the School of Health Professions & Studies (SHPS) has been awarded $15,000 in grant funding to use telemedicine to bring subspecialty care to the underserved and disadvantaged of Flint. The funding will allow the UM-Flint Urban Health & Wellness Center (UWHC), in partnership with the Hamilton Community Health Network FQHC, to pilot a telemedicine program that will connect U-M Health System subspecialists with UHWC patients.

Safety-net primary care clinics like the UHWC are often challenged to be able to provide appropriate subspecialty consultations and care for their patients due to barriers such as inadequate health insurance and patient transportation problems. In Flint, many low income and underserved patients wait months to be physically seen by a subspecialist, or may not be seen at all if they lack health insurance. Telemedicine, which is the use of telecommunication resources like live video, audio and electronic document exchange in medical service provision, provides an opportunity to bring subspecialty care right into the safety-net clinic for these patients.

The funding will primarily be used to purchase the technical equipment needed for teleconferencing. The initial pilot will focus on the needs of UHWC patients who are already part of the Genesee Health Plan, who constitute about 80 percent of patients seen at the UHWC.

To learn more about this grant, please contact Amalie Helms, Grants and Contracts Specialist in the School of Health Professions & Studies, ahelms@umflint.edu | 810-237-6694.