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Study Utilizes eConsult System to Improve Access to Helpline Services for Underserved Los Angeles County Residents

Posted by Kristin Harms

May 11, 2017 11:48:23 AM

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif.--()--Safety Net Connect (SNC), a leading provider of innovative healthcare technology for organizations assisting underserved populations, is pleased to announce that its electronic consultation “eConsult” system used by Los Angeles County Department of Health Services (LADHS) is engaged in a two-year-long University of California, Davis (UC Davis) study to measure the benefits of an integrative approach to tobacco cessation, in partnership with California Smokers’ Helpline (Helpline), a free, evidence-based smoking cessation program funded by the California Department of Public Health, the Centers for Disease Control, and First 5 California.

This collaborative project, funded through a Community Practice-Based Research Planning Award from the Tobacco-Related Disease Research Program (TRDRP) of California, was launched with the aim of creating and fostering long-term sustainable partnerships to conduct cost-effective, high quality tobacco cessation programs that are replicable across clinics throughout California. Several months into the project, SNC’s eConsult technology has already demonstrated a positive change in the delivery of tobacco cessation services for underserved populations, while increasing access to evidence-based tobacco treatment.

“The partnership with Safety Net Connect, the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services (LADHS), and the Helpline is a great opportunity to break down barriers to treatment, help smokers gain access to proven cessation methods, and positively impact the health and wellness of the low income patients served by LADHS,” says Gary Tedeschi, PhD, Clinical Director, California Smokers’ Helpline.

How the Helpline and eConsult Work Together. As the nation’s second largest public health system serving 670,000 patients each year, LADHS has utilized SNC’s eConsult technology since 2014 to power its web-based care coordination platform that connects 5,000 primary care providers with community-based specialists, averaging 17,000 eConsult requests per month. Leveraging this industry-tested system, the UC Davis study expands the scope of eConsult for LADHS providers by offering direct referrals for its large population of tobacco-using patients – most of whom are low socioeconomic; linguistically, racially, ethnically, diverse; and geographically dispersed – to free, multilingual telephone-based tobacco cessation counseling services at the Helpline. In addition to improving access to care, the integration of LADHS/SNC eConsult and the Helpline facilitates an unprecedented connection between disparate electronic health records systems across LADHS and community clinic providers.

“Working with Safety Net Connect has dramatically increased access to Helpline services among the hundreds of thousands of patients served by the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services,” says Antonio Mayoral, Director of Operations and Information Technology for the California Smokers’ Helpline. “We hope to have the opportunity to work with other providers throughout California who utilize Safety Net Connect’s eConsult solution.”

“This is an exciting opportunity to expand access to services for everyone in the Los Angeles community who wants to pursue healthy lifestyle choices,” says Chris Cruttenden, President of SNC. “We are proud to partner with the Smokers’ Helpline and to expand our relationship with LADHS to include this important collaborative initiative.”

About California Smokers’ Helpline

The California Smokers’ Helpline (Helpline) is a free, evidence-based, telephone counseling program for quitting smoking, proven in clinical trials to double a smoker’s chance of quitting. Multilingual services include telephone counseling, self-help materials, chat, and text messaging. The Helpline is operated by the Moores UCSD Cancer Center under the direction of Shu-Hong Zhu, PhD, Professor of Family and Preventive Medicine and is funded by the California Department of Public Health, the Centers for Disease Control, and First 5 California. For more information, please visit www.nobutts.org.

About Los Angeles County Department of Health Services

The Los Angeles County Department of Health Services (LADHS) is the second largest municipal health system in the nation. The LADHS mission is to ensure access to high-quality, patient-centered, cost-effective health care to Los Angeles County residents through direct services at DHS facilities and through collaboration with community and university partners. For more information, please visit www.dhs.lacounty.gov.

About Safety Net Connect

Since 2009, Safety Net Connect (SNC) has partnered with public and private organizations to provide a multitude of successful and nationally recognized web-based healthcare solutions for underserved and safety net populations. SNC’s innovative solutions have reached over 5 million patients from clients such as Los Angeles Department of Health Services (LADHS), MedPoint, LA Care, Orange County Healthcare Agency, CalOptima, San Diego Healthcare Agency, and Cook County MHN (an Illinois Medicaid Project). For more information, please visit www.safetynetconnect.com.


Safety Net Connect
Kristine Nash-Wong

About this Blog

The California Smokers' Helpline offers free, evidence-based tobacco cessation services in multiple languages to help smokers quit. We also offer free training and resources to health professionals to increase their knowledge and capacity for tobacco cessation.

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Contact Us

For more information about our free training and resources for health professionals, please contact the Helpline Communications Department at (858) 300-1010 or cshoutreach@ucsd.edu.

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