Project ECHO® (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes) is a Teleconsulting and telementoring partnership between MD Anderson specialists and providers in rural and underserved communities.
Recognizing a critical need to address disparities in cancer care, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center has been designated as an ECHO superhub for oncology by the ECHO Institute at the University of New Mexico Health Science Center (UNMHSC). MD Anderson is one of just nine ECHO superhub sites in the world and the first focused on oncology.
Project ECHO (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes) was developed in...
Build capacity among distant community based clinicians via case-based learning and co-management of patients by using videoconferencing technology integrated with clinical management tools to connect primary care providers in rural and underserved areas with specialty consultants.
Overview and Proof of Concept
Developed in 2003 by Dr. Sanjeev Arora of the University of New Mexico (UNM) in response to a high prevalence of untreated Hepatitis C (HCV) in the state. Using this model, Dr. Arora conducted a prospective clinical trial, the results of which were published in 2011 in the New England Journal of Medicine. Dr. Arora conducted weekly videoconferences with primary care providers in 16 community clinics and 5 prisons in New Mexico. Patient cases were presented, and a multidisciplinary team at the UNM provided clinical mentoring, evidence-based advice on patient management and regular didactic education sessions. At the end of the study period, the outcomes of patients treated by specialists at UNM were compared with those of patients treated by primary care providers. The study found no significant differences in sustained viral response between the UNM cohort and the ECHO cohort. The study concluded that the ECHO model is safe and effective in treating HCV in underserved communities.
The Project ECHO model has since expanded to more than 89 hubs for nearly 45 complex conditions in the United States and twelve other countries. These specialties include infectious diseases, rheumatologic diseases, chronic pain, addiction, HIV diabetes, complex multisystem disease, cancer prevention and hospice care.
Becoming an ECHO Partner
Follow these steps to become a member:
- Find a program you would like to participate in
- Contact the program coordinators or Melissa Lopez to receive the meeting invitations and information about the ECHO clinics
- Set up the free videoconferencing software (Zoom) and any required hardware that is needed for participation
- Connect to your first ECHO clinic
Videoconferencing (Zoom) Instructions
Follow these steps to connect to a clinic:
- Evidence-based, best practice guidance from specialists
- Case-based "learning-loop"
- Clinical update presentations from experts
- No cost CME, CEU, CNE for participation
- Live Q & A
- Opportunity to translate new knowledge into practice to improve outcomes for patients in their community.
All of our sessions are free, but require a commitment to actively engage in the peer learning community by sharing their experience and presenting cases.
ECHO MD Anderson uses an internet-based video technology; called Zoom. Participants can connect to the video sessions through their phone, tablet, laptop, or a computer with a webcam. Technical support is provided.
Any health care professional who wants to engage around a topic, share their experience, and learn from their peers can attend ECHO sessions. We welcome clinicians, psychiatrists, counselors, social workers, healthcare administrators, certified tobacco treatment specialists, patient navigators, nurses, pharmacists, and public health practitioners.
Only non-identifiable information is shared during the sessions. Our sessions are HIPAA safe and a secure place to share information.
All non-international sessions include credit for attending. The series description on the promotional flyers and on our website will indicate whether or not continuing education credits can be obtained.
Patients are not actually seen during Project ECHO sessions. Instead, these sessions facilitate a way in which community providers can connect to specialists who help co-manage patients. Participants can present cases to a specialist or simply join others in the spirit of learning (similar to grand rounds).
MD Anderson Project ECHO Staff
Ellen Baker, M.D., M.P.H.
Director, Project ECHO
Cell: 281-782-7184 Fax:713-794-4403
Melissa S. Lopez, M.Sc
Program Manager, Project ECHO
Desk: 713-794-5182 Fax: 713-563-9203
MD Anderson Cancer Center
Division of Cancer Prevention and Population Sciences
Cancer Prevention Building, 8.3080
1155 Hermann P. Pressler Dr.
Houston, TX 77030-3721
MD Anderson Cancer Center
Division of Cancer Prevention and Population Sciences - Unit 1370
PO Box 301439
Houston, TX 77230-1439