$1.6 Million Ryan White Grant Awarded to Weill Cornell Medical College To Study Benefits of Information Technology for HIV Care

Medical Information Management Is Critical for Complex HIV Care

Mar 10, 2003

New York, NY

Weill Cornell Medical College's Department of Public Health has been awarded an impressive $1.6 million Ryan White Grant to study the benefits of information technology for those with HIV. The study intends to enroll patients, in part, through NewYork-Presbyterian Healthcare System's new HIV Special Needs Plan, known as NewYork-Presbyterian System Select Health. Select Health is expected to begin operations shortly upon licensure from New York State's Department of Health.

Medical information management is critical to HIV care. Prescription indications, lab results, side effects, referrals, and more all can be dauntingly complex, said Dr. Bruce Schackman, Assistant Professor of Public Health at Weill Cornell Medical College and the study's Principal Investigator. This grant allows us to study how, by using a customized computer, patients and doctors may improve the delivery, quality, and cost-effectiveness of HIV care.

The four-year study will investigate HIV patients' use of a computer kiosk that is designed to identify problems that require a referral and monitor adherence to treatment. If the technology is demonstrated to be effective, it will be adopted by Select Health and be available to members throughout the Plan's primary care provider network of hospitals and community health centers. Furthermore, the technology may serve as a model for managed care programs nationally or HIV primary care, as well as other treatment areas, added Eli Camhi, Executive Director of Select Health.

Prior to seeing their doctor, enrolled HIV patients will confidentially review their online medical record and complete a screening for medication side effects, treatment adherence, substance abuse, and depression. The kiosk, located in a private area, will have an English/Spanish-language option, as well as audio (through headphones), which is especially useful for patients who lack reading skills. The first kiosk will be available at the Specialty Care Center at New York Hospital Medical Center of Queens, a premier AIDS treatment facility and member of the NewYork-Presbyterian Healthcare System. Participants will be patients at the Queens clinic, including members of Select Health, the System's HIV Special Needs Plan.

We are pleased to be a part of this important initiative, designed to enhance treatment adherence and continuity of care for persons with HIV/AIDS living in the New York metropolitan area, said Dr. Arthur Klein, Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of the NewYork-Presbyterian Healthcare System.

This project represents another successful partnership between the Department of Public Health at Weill Cornell Medical College and the NewYork-Presbyterian Healthcare System, said Dr. Alvin Mushlin, Professor and Chair of the Department of Public Health at the Weill Cornell Medical College. Together, the project's leaders will employ research to find new ways to improve clinical care.

Dr. Bruce Schackman, the grant's Principal Investigator, has been a leading researcher in the effort to ensure appropriate access to treatment for all individuals with HIV and AIDS. His co-investigator is Dr. Mark Callahan, Chief of the Division of Outcomes and Effectiveness Research in Weill Cornell's Department of Public Health.

Dr. David Rubin, Medical Director of the AIDS Center at New York Hospital Queens, said, We are very much looking forward to participating in this very innovative program. It will enable patients to use high-technology equipment to maximize their adherence to our comprehensive anti-HIV therapies. Dr. Rubin, Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College, is the study's Site Director.

Ryan White Grant

The grant one of six awarded by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) and the Agency for Healthcare Research Quality (AHRQ) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and by the AIDS Education and Training Centers (AETC) is designated a Special Project of National Significance under the Ryan White Comprehensive AIDS Resources Emergency (CARE) Act of 1990. The Ryan White CARE Act is federal legislation that addresses the health needs of persons living with HIV by funding primary health care and support services. The CARE Act was named after Ryan White, an Indiana teenager whose courageous struggle with HIV/AIDS and against AIDS-related discrimination helped educate the nation.

NewYork-Presbyterian System Select Health

NewYork-Presbyterian System Select Health, or Select Health, for short, is currently completing its application to the State Department of Health to operate an HIV Special Needs Plan. Select Health will offer comprehensive health-care services to persons with HIV and AIDS who are eligible for Medicaid. Medicaid recipients infected with HIV and their children, regardless of HIV status, are eligible. Enrollment is voluntary. NewYork-Presbyterian System Select Health is seeking approval of its proposed provider network as completed in Manhattan, the Bronx, Queens, and Brooklyn, which includes designated AIDS Care Centers at System hospitals; health care centers at Wyckoff Heights Medical Center, New York Methodist Hospital, and Community Healthcare Network; and several community-based organizations.

NewYork-Presbyterian System Select Health was developed by the NewYork-Presbyterian Healthcare System, Partners in Health, the Community Healthcare Network, and Wyckoff Heights Medical Center, and with the assistance of numerous community-based organizations.

New York Hospital Medical Center of Queens

New York Hospital Queens is a 439-bed tertiary care teaching and research facility located in Flushing, New York. The Hospital is a member of the NewYork-Presbyterian Healthcare System and is affiliated with the Weill Medical College of Cornell University.

NewYork-Presbyterian Healthcare System

The NewYork-Presbyterian Healthcare System which includes 32 acute-care hospital sites, 15 long-term care facilities, and numerous ambulatory sites, and specialty institutions promotes high-quality, cost-effective, and accessible care for communities throughout the Tri-State Metropolitan region. The System serves nearly one out of every four patients in the New York Metropolitan area. Each System member has an academic affiliation with one of two of the country's leading medical colleges: Joan and Sanford I. Weill Medical College of Cornell University or Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons.