What is Project ECHO?
Project ECHO is a telementoring program designed to create communities of learners by bringing together health care providers (medical officers, general physicians, nurse practitioners, nurses, community health workers, etc) and experts in topical areas using didactic and case‐based presentations, fostering an “all learn, all teach” approach. Using basic, widely available videoconferencing technology, clinical management tools, and case‐based learning, health care providers develop knowledge and self‐efficacy on diseases, conditions, and/or processes.
Project ECHO has been recognized globally as a successful tool to improve patient care outcomes. Unlike telemedicine, this tele-mentoring model does not foster a health care provider and patient relationship. ECHO follows these four key principles:
Subscribes to the disease management model of care that aims to improve quality, reduce variety, and standardize best practices.
Fosters multidisciplinary partnerships that increase access to care and reduce health care costs.
Engages health care providers to participate in case‐based learning under guided practice to provide specialized care to their own patients.
Utilizes technology to promote face-to-face mentorship and sharing of knowledge and experience by experts and peers without the need for cost-intensive supervision, in-person trainings, and travel.
Published data demonstrates that patients who received care from providers mentored using the ECHO methodology had outcomes as good or better than those treated at specialized referral hospitals, which has largely been credited to leveraging the patient‐centered medical home model.
There are currently over 560 hubs worldwide in more than 30 countries on six continents for nearly 70 diseases and conditions.
How is the AAP involved?
In November 2013, the AAP partnered with the ECHO Institute to address the health and social needs of children and youth with epilepsy in rural and underserved areas of New Mexico. The AAP has since expanded its this relationship with the ECHO Institute to include other programs across the United States and globally.
The AAP serves as an ECHO Superhub, training and supporting partner organizations (hubs). The mission of the AAP ECHO Superhub is to utilize the ECHO model to achieve optimal physical, mental, and social health and well-being of all children by sharing best practices and building capacity among all pediatric providers. In this capacity, we:
Conduct ECHO immersion trainings for individuals and organizations interested in implementing pediatric-focused ECHOs
Build a community of learners by fostering interprofessional collaboration and sharing best practices in pediatric care
Serve as a resource center, whereby AAP staff
Provide technical assistance
Assist with curriculum development for various chronic health conditions
Create and expand partnerships
To date, the AAP has:
Trained more than 40 organizations
Supported dozens of pediatric ECHO programs
Launched more than 10 AAP ECHO programs
Assisted organizations with the centralization of ECHO efforts within academic institutions, country health systems, and state programs
If you are interested in getting involved, click here.
To learn about the various AAP ECHO topics, click