Virtual care closes gaps in health care

By Bo Jungmayer
Thursday, September 13, 2018
Chamber photo

Access and collaboration were common themes at yesterday's panel discussion “Meeting Needs Through Virtual Care,” organized by the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, as part of its Executive Speaker Series.

Jaja Okigwe, president and CEO of First Choice Health moderated the discussion. Prior to joining First Choice Health, Okigwe was the vice president of Strategic Investments and Innovation at Premera.

mia-wise-blog-portraitDr. Mia Wise, a medical director at Premera Blue Cross, spoke on the panel, along with Dr. Chris Cable, senior medical director of Clinical Excellence and Integration at Kaiser Permanente; Dr. Karen Gifford, administrative director of Pharmacy at Virginia Mason Medical Center; and Dr. Brad Younggren, chief medical officer at 98point6.

Okigwe asked the panelists to speak to the opportunities virtual care solutions can provide, as well as how to increase adoption of these solutions.

Wise, who is also a practicing primary care physician in Seattle, shared how virtual care can address health care access issues, for patients in rural or low-income areas.

She highlighted patients with chronic conditions who would benefit from virtual care options. Instead of having to drive to their doctors, they can use virtual services at home to accomplish monitoring tasks they otherwise might have needed to do at the doctor’s office.

Wise added a caveat that as we incorporate virtual care and track patient outcomes, we need to make sure their outcomes align with their goals. “Health care is a relationship,” said Wise. "The interaction isn’t intended to be transactional. It’s more of a dialogue between a patient and a provider offering care solutions that will lead to better outcomes for the patient.

Premera supports partners working in the virtual care space to continue improving the overall experience of our customers.

Premera offers numerous 24-hour care solutions. You can find the list here

About the Executive Speaker Series: The monthly Executive Speaker Series events each focus on a unique industry and feature top business leaders who discuss the successes, challenges, and opportunities facing their sector.

Visit the Executive Speaker Series Program page to see other Executive Speaker Series events!

Bo Jungmayer is in Corporate Communications at Premera Blue Cross.


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