Last month, UCI was on site at DTC Perspectives’ annual Multicultural Health Conference to learn and share best practices for reaching the multicultural consumer. I was honored to share the stage with Mario Anglada of Univision Farmacia, and our partners Dr. Joel Zonszein of Montefiore Medical Center and Dr. Ashwin Patel of InquisitHealth to review one of our most impactful and successful partnerships of the past year.
You might remember a recent blog in which we shared how Univision Farmacia, Novo Nordisk, Montefiore and seven leading healthcare organizations created a patient program for Hispanics who have or are at high risk for developing diabetes. This time, we wanted to hear from our partners, and the roles they played to make the collaboration a success. Here’s what we discussed:
Montefiore’s Challenge –Montefiore is a medical center that provides healthcare services to the Bronx community, which has a large adult Hispanic population affected by diabetes. According to Dr. Zonszein, the problem is a lack of information on how to treat the disease. He says “it’s tragic to see Hispanic patients who come in with hemoglobin A1C score higher than 7%. We knew what the challenges were, but we didn’t know how to solve them. That’s why, when we were asked to partner with Univision, I saw a tremendous opportunity to utilize Univision’s media platforms as a bridge to reach the Hispanic community.”
InquisitHealth’s Peer Mentoring Program—One of the major components of the collaboration was InquisitHealth’s peer mentorship solution which, at launch, tested individuals’ A1C to diagnose uncontrolled diabetes (A1C 9%+). Dr. Patel explained, “When we looked at the patients who were in that category, their average A1C score was 11.5%, which is extremely high. So, we matched these individuals with Hispanic trained mentors [with diabetes as well] who coached them over the course of six months through phone, text message, and smartphone-based consultations.”
Collaboration in the Healthcare Industry—The panelists agreed that one of the primary reasons we don’t see collaborations in the healthcare industry is because of the gap between primary care providers and pharmaceutical companies. Zonszein adds, “we have to work with pharma and pharma has to work with physicians.”
The success of this program was due in large part to the cohesive partnership that was created. Dr. Patel noted that “each partner was chosen specifically because they had a specific expertise— Montefiore is a great provider of diabetes services, but they might not be so good at providing peer mentoring. InquisitHealth is really good at peer mentoring, but might not have the capabilities of engaging the Hispanic consumer like Univision is.” Utilizing each partner’s specific strengths, and allowing each to ‘own’ that area of the program without much interference is what allowed this partnership to thrive.
The face of healthcare is changing with organizations shifting to different approaches that require collaboration between all providers to offer the best services to patients. Our goal is always to bring our partners together in an effort to empower the Hispanic consumer, which we accomplished with this tremendous undertaking.