Two Decades of Giving New Mexicans Better Access to Health Care and Education

New Mexico is where it all began for Project ECHO. Dr. Arora launched his mission in 2003 with one goal: to make sure not one more New Mexican died of treatable hepatitis C because they couldn’t see a doctor with the expertise to treat them in time. From there, Project ECHO has grown to 47 programs across the state to improve a wide range of health and education issues.

With funding support from the State of New Mexico and various philanthropies, ECHO is providing cost-effective solutions to address critical problems, including substance use disorder, mental health, palliative care, geriatric care and early childhood education.

New programs launched in 2022 include the Alcohol Use and Mental Health ECHO to address alcohol-related harm and associated medical and psychiatric conditions and the Pediatrics ECHO to support better health care for children across the state.

Woman talking to men in orange jumpsuits.

Doctors at Gallup Indian Medical Center Learn Best-Practice Care

Operated by the Indian Health Service, the Gallup Indian Medical Center is a 99-bed facility, with more than 250,000 outpatient visits and 5,800 inpatient admissions annually. It’s the closest health care facility for many Navajo Nation residents. Many patients struggle to find and afford transportation to get there, and they may face a one-to-two-hour drive, often on rough, unpaved roads.

When they’re finally able to see a doctor, imagine their disappointment when they’re referred to a specialist based in Albuquerque, 138 miles away, or Flagstaff, Ariz., a 185-mile journey. That’s where ECHO comes in.

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