Jaclyn Iannucci, PhD, associate research scientist in the Department of Neuroscience and Experimental Therapeutics at…
New institute will lead interdisciplinary telehealth research, education and clinical services across the university
Texas A&M University is set to establish a new Telehealth Institute as part of Texas A&M Health to advance interdisciplinary telehealth research, education and clinical services.
The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents has approved the creation of the new institute, which is aimed at addressing disparities in access to high-quality health care.
Through collaborative partnerships and the application of scientific knowledge and innovative solutions, the institute will provide telehealth services to diverse communities and will increase research in clinical care, rural health, policy, law, community outreach, education and population health by collaborating with schools across the university.
Carly McCord, PhD, clinical associate professor in the Texas A&M School of Medicine and the School of Education, has been named the executive director of the institute. It is being created and operated in partnership with the Texas A&M Health Digital Health Initiative led by Jim Colson, vice president of Digital Health, to collaboratively innovate and advance digital health processes, systems, tools and technologies across the university and the tech industry.
Three core Telehealth Institute teams—research, clinical and education—will integrate their efforts together with Digital Health to maximize their impact. The research core team will conduct telehealth-related research and evaluation projects, disseminate high impact scholarly work and facilitate and accelerate interdisciplinary research opportunities across the university.
The clinical core team will lead patient care delivered by licensed providers across health disciplines. This team will focus on increasing access to care and fostering innovation in care delivery over time based on evidence collected through the research core and validated in practice.
The education core team will advance telehealth education and training with a focus on equipping students, trainees and practicing health care providers with the expertise and competencies to effectively serve diverse populations through telehealth.
“The need for excellence in telehealth is undeniable,” McCord said. “We are excited to build on 14 years of successful research and care in telebehavioral health and take on new challenges in improving health outcomes for rural and underserved communities. By creating new telehealth service offerings and synergizing faculty expertise across the university, we will continue to make advancements in telehealth care and knowledge. Texas A&M is perfectly poised to lead in this space, and it is a privilege and a pleasure to have the opportunity to lead this institute.”
“Telehealth advancements are enabled through advancements in digital platforms, devices and data,” Colson added. “Digital Health is partnering with the Telehealth Institute to bring cross-university and cross-tech industry research and development to underpin the Telehealth Institute’s advancements in health research, clinical service and education processes to establish world-class telehealth care.”
The Telehealth Institute builds off the successful Texas A&M Health Telebehavioral Care program, which has been leading service delivery, policy-relevant research and evaluation, and interdisciplinary training in telehealth counseling since 2009. Telebehavioral Care provides counseling services via telehealth to underserved individuals in regions across Texas.
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