Why It Matters
Iora Health is a start-up that seeks to revolutionize primary care delivery. Its goal is to disrupt the current models of primary care delivery and reduce health care spending.
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Dispatches from Las Vegas: Learning from Iora Health

By IHI Open School | Tuesday, January 20, 2015
Eva Luo1

For the next four weeks, Eva Luo, an Open School student and an MD/MBA candidate at the University of Michigan Medical School and Harvard Business School, is doing a rotation at Iora Health in Las Vegas to learn about their model of primary care. While there, she’s also going to be working on a population health project through the Open School’s new initiative, the Improvement Change Agent Network, or I-CAN. Below is her first dispatch for our blog, in which she describes why she’s interested in primary care, population health, and I-CAN. Look for more of her posts here, and contact us at openschool@ihi.org if you want to write for our blog.

Usually, what happens in Las Vegas stays in Vegas. But not this time! 

For the next four weeks, I have been adopted by the Culinary Extra Clinic, an Iora Health Practice, in Las Vegas. If this was a video entry, you would see the biggest smile on my face with some giddy laughs thrown in! There are so many reasons being in Las Vegas makes me smile:
  1. I have just four more months of medical school left.
  2. I’m completely avoiding the cold Michigan winters by living in Vegas. Temperatures range  between 50 and 60 degrees here every day.
  3. Most of all, I’m an Iora Health fanatic
Briefly, Iora Health is a start-up that seeks to revolutionize primary care delivery. Its goal is to disrupt the current models of primary care delivery and reduce health care spending through a team-based and patient-centered approach. With a greater emphasis on primary care, the team can prevent costly emergency room visits and hospital admissions. Most of all, it creates happy patients and happy clinicians!

Beyond that, Iora Health takes a population health perspective in managing its patients. This means that each patient receives a health coach and has access to wellness classes, fitness classes, and cooking classes to improve their overall well-being. Home visits, hospital visits, phone calls, text messaging, and emails are all normal services. Since the first time I wrote about Iora Health, they have grown dramatically and now have clinics in Boston, New York, Las Vegas, Hanover, Seattle, and Phoenix. 

For the next four weeks, I will be immersed in the Iora way of primary care, working side-by-side with the phenomenal team at Culinary Extra Clinic. I will also be working on a population health project, piloting IHI Open School’s new I-CAN curriculum. More details on my project to come in the next blog post!

I-CAN stands for the IHI Open School Change Agent Network, and it’s a new development at the IHI Open School. It ties together all of the quality improvement, patient safety, and health care operations courses currently offered and adds on a layer of practical skills in leadership and community organizing to transform IHI Open School students into effective population health change agents. This pilot began with an eight week I-CAN virtual course. A capstone component of the course is to put the learned skills into action with an improvement project focused on population health. If you’re interested in the course and becoming member of the I-CAN network, click here to learn more.  

I welcome all of y’all to join me on my visit to Las Vegas! I will regularly share my thoughts and experiences here on the IHI Open School Blog. Please help me in ensuring that what happens in Vegas DOES NOT stay in Vegas!

Read more in this series:

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