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Nationally Renowned "Health Care Without Walls" Author to Speak at ASU

I recently was asked to speak at the American Association of Colleges of Nursing on preparing the nursing workforce for community-based care. Most of my career has been spent in community. In fact, my first job out of college was as a visiting nurse in New York City. I believe in community-based care – so preparing the presentation wasn’t difficult for me.

The elusive 'community-based care'

Mostly, though, I’m just frustrated hearing about the “imminent” shift of health care from acute care to community. People have been saying this for as long as I can remember and it never seems to happen – at least not to the promised extent. Certainly, the issues are daunting – payment reform alone could take a book. BUT – at the same time, we all know that community is where people live their lives and want to receive meaningful healthcare. Throughout, I’ve held to the promise of community-based care in which prevention and promotion are front and center along with effective chronic illness care and everything else that “community” signifies.

Health Care Without WallsA blueprint for the future

At the recent 2018 National Center for Interprofessional Practice and Education Summit, I heard a plenary presentation that energized and inspired me. It offered a vision of a transformed health system called “Health Care Without Walls” that captures the vision of community while updating it for today’s context.

Susan Dentzer, the President and CEO of the Network for Excellence in Health Innovation (NEHI), talked about what it would take in today’s world to shift the axis of the health care system into community settings.

Working with almost 100 major health care organizations and stakeholders including health plans, universities, employers and biotech firms, NEHI is laying out a blueprint for significant system redesign. Their blueprint has something for everyone to think about: a focus on health promotion and prevention, state of the art technology applications, and payment and policy changes.

A visit from a visionary

Susan DentzerI sat in the audience of several hundred people – mostly educators and providers - thinking, “It’s about time!! I want to be part of this. No – “want” isn’t the right word – I “need” to be part of this!” 

When Q and A time came, I raced up to the microphone to ask my question (something about financial incentives for this new system). I wrote Susan the same day – and she responded within minutes and said, “Let’s talk.” 

As a result of this talk and others, Susan Dentzer is coming to ASU on January 25, 2019 to present NEHI’s vision of Health Care Without Walls as she did at the National Center Summit this past summer.

I am beyond excited about Susan’s visit. Why?

It’s an important opportunity for the ASU Community and our many academic and clinical partners to explore what a health care system without walls would mean for educating our students, for improving healthcare quality and costs, and for new research.

It’s a chance to ask each other questions we don’t ordinarily get to talk about like: What new technologies can we anticipate?  How can our research at ASU provide tests of this intriguing concept?  Who prepares faculty for this new reality?  And my personal favorite, if there’s no walls, what will health care architects do??

Please RSVP now to Susan’s presentation, and join what I expect will be an exciting and likely unconventional conversation.

Event Details

Presentation with reception to follow

Friday, January 25, 2019 from 3:00 - 4:30pm

ASU Downtown Phoenix Campus - Health North Auditorium



About the Author

Gerri LambGerri Lamb is the Founding Director of ASU’s Center for Advancing Interprofessional Practice, Education & Research and Professor at the College of Nursing and Health Innovation. She is committed to supporting the growth of interprofessional initiatives at ASU in collaboration with much-valued academic and clinical partners. She also works to connect local and state activities to the national IPE community in her role as past chair of the American Interprofessional Health Collaborative and liaison to the National Center for Interprofessional Practice and Education Nexus Innovations Incubator.

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