The Compass Summer 2022 | Page 6


Improving access for rural patients

Funded entirely by your generosity , the Ross McKnight Patient Pathways program launched earlier this year on our Temple campus .
aylor Scott & White from heart disease , cancer , serves many population unintentional injury , chronic groups throughout the lower respiratory disease , state , each with their own and stroke — many conditions unique healthcare needs and that are preventable or barriers to care . The Ross treatable with appropriate McKnight Patient Pathways and consistent care . program — designed to meet However , many rural patients the challenges faced by rural struggle to access the care patients — is the latest effort they need . Their health issues in our ongoing commitment worsen until they become to serve the unique needs unmanageable , leading to of patients and communities greater use of emergency and across Texas . hospital services .
Texas is home to the largest “ Our ultimate goal is to keep rural population of any state . patients as healthy as possible According to the Centers and out of the hospital ,” says for Disease Control and
Katie Sciba , manager for Prevention , rural Americans Comprehensive Care at Baylor are more likely than their Scott & White Medical Center urban counterparts to die - Temple . “ Through the
Many rural patients face challenges , such as :
f Transportation f Poverty & Lack of Insurance Rural patients often have Nationwide , both the to travel long distances poverty rates and rates of to access care . Many lack people without insurance reliable transportation or are higher in rural areas are unable to bear the cost than in urban areas . of travel and time away Without the means to pay from work , especially for for care or medications , frequent appointments . many patients turn to the emergency room f Internet Access as their primary source Rural areas are less likely to of healthcare . In other have the internet services instances , patients and speeds needed to utilize struggle to have their virtual care options . Patients basic needs met , such as may also lack the knowledge adequate food or housing , or confidence to navigate and their healthcare internet-based care . becomes a lower priority .
Patient Pathways program , we reach out to those who are struggling to manage their own health for various reasons , find out what their individual challenges are , and connect them with resources to address those issues .”
The program launched in March 2022 at Baylor Scott & White Medical Center – Temple and has since served 67 patients living in Bell , Milam , and Falls counties . A dedicated patient navigator works with patients recently discharged from the hospital who live in rural areas to make sure they have the resources they need to manage their own healthcare . The patient navigator can help patients arrange rides to appointments , walk them through the process of gaining health coverage , or connect them with resources in the community , such as housing or food banks .
The program was named for Ross McKnight , a longtime member and former chairman of the board of trustees for Baylor Scott & White Health .
To learn more about this program and how you can help , please contact Lori Luppino at Lori . Luppino @ BSWHealth . org or 254-899-3771 .