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Women's Health Council of RI

Co-Chairs

MARY REICH COOPER, MD, JD
Senior Vice President and Chief Quality
Officer, Lifespan;
Assistant Professor of Medicine (Research) at the Alpert MedicalSchool of Brown University

KAREN ROSENE-MONTELLA, MD
Chief of Medicine, Women & Infants, Professor of Medicine and OB/GYN,
Alpert Medical School of Brown University

Recording Secretaries
DINEEN E. GOLATTO                       DOREEN HOOGASIAN
JENNA HOULE

Members

LISA BLUMSTEIN 
Trinet Healthcare Consultants

CARRIE BRIDGES, MPH  
RI Department of Health

SANDRA CARSON, MD 
Women & Infants, Brown University

MAUREEN CHUNG, MD 
Rhode Island Hospital, University
Surgical Associates, Brown University

GAIL COSTA 
Care New England

SUZANNE CRAIG 
Blue Cross Blue Shield RI

SUSAN CU-UVIN, MD 
Miriam Hospital, Brown University

MICHELLE G. CYR, MD                            Alpert Medical School, Brown University

MARIA DECARVALHO, M. DIV. 
Maria DeCarvalho & Associates 

SILVIA DEGLI ESPOSTI, MD
Women & Infants, Brown University

DANIELLE DENIS 
United Healthcare

CHRISTY L. DIBBLE, DO  
Women & Infants, Brown University  

JANE EISEN, MD  
Alpert Medical School, Brown University  

LINN FREEDMAN, ESQ 
Nixon Peabody LLP 

REBEKAH GARDNER, MD  
Quality Partners of RI, Brown University

CHRISTINE GODDARD  
Blue Cross Blue Shield RI 

GEETHA GOPALAKRISHNAN, MD 
RI Hospital, Women & Infants, Brown University  

SKIP GRANAI, MD 
Women & Infants, Brown University 

NANCY HARRISON 
United Healthcare 

KATHLEEN HITTNER, MD 
Lifespan, Brown University

MARGARET HOWARD, PHD 
Women & Infants, Brown University 

CONSTANCE A. HOWES, JD  
Women & Infants 

LUCIA LARSON,  MD
Women & Infants, Brown University 

MARGARET MILLER, MD 
Women & Infants, Brown University 

DEBORAH MYERS, MD 
Women & Infants, Brown University

TERI PEARLSTEIN, MD 
Women & Infants, Brown University 

ATHENA POPPAS, MD   
Rhode Island Hospital, Brown University 

RAYMOND POWRIE, MD 
Women & Infants, Brown University 

BARBARA ROBERTS, MD
Miriam Hospital, Brown University

CINDY SCHWARTZ, MD 
Hasbro Children's Hospital, Brown University 

RACHEL SCHWARTZ 
Lifespan, Brown University

LISA SHEA, MD 
Butler, Brown University

PATRICIA SPENCER, MD 
Women & Infants, Brown University

PATRICK SWEENEY, MD
Women & Infants, Brown University

PATRICIA WOLFE                                RI Hospital, Hasbro Children's Hospital

 

Broadening the Standards for Women's Health

 

WHC LogoWho we are

A unifying organization of providers, payers, policy makers and community members dedicated to broadening the approach to Women's Health in Rhode Island, from the traditional model of breast and obstetrics/gynecological health to a whole system of comprehensive, integrated care.

 

Together, we have developed a new statement to define Women's Health Care:

 

         Comprehensive and coordinated research, education, clinical care and policy/advocacy that improves the social, physical and mental health of women across the lifespan.

 

As an organization, we provide leadership in the following four areas that influence the quality and accessibility of treatment for women:

 

Research To pose new questions for investigation; to institute steps for evaluation and continual improvement; to translate research and new therapies into effective practice and policy.

Education To expand the provider audience to include all individuals who care for the physical, mental or social health of women; to inform providers in all areas of women's health; to link providers across disciplines in the discussions; to engage providers in partnering with women to encourage healthy lifestyle choices; to improve women's access to appropriate physical, mental and social health care.

Clinical Care  To identify areas of primary prevention and disease management; to enable integration across care disciplines; to identify women at risk and improve their outcomes.

Policy and Advocacy  To affect women's health care policy; to improve systems of, payment for and monitoring metrics of care delivery; to have an impact at the local, state and national levels.

 

A Brief History

 

In January 2008, Karen Rosene-Montella, MD, Chief of Medicine at Women & Infants Hospital, and Mary Reich Cooper, MD, JD, Senior Vice President of Quality Care at Lifespan Corporation, convened the Women's Health Council of RI with the intent of bringing together a multi-disciplinary group interested in improving the quality of health care for women across the state.

 

As the co-chairs report, "We wanted to inventory available clinical and educational resources so we could focus efforts on filling gaps in care, encouraging innovative models of care, developing collaborative quality and research initiatives, and redefining women's healthcare as more than GYN care only. We also hoped to make Rhode Island a demonstration project for quality measures in women's health that would be promoted by the Council."

 

Today the Council's Mission is clear. All of its activities are designed to bring the expanded definition of women's health care to the public: as a promise and in practice.

 

Some Early Initiatives

 

In October 2010, our first annual conference, and the first quality conference for women's health in Rhode Island, will introduce the extended care community to the Council and our approach. We will begin the discussion in this new frontier with two important topics where we have identified the need for integrated research, education and clinical care across a broad spectrum of providers.

 

   1. Better Quality for Social and Physical Health: Recognizing the Risk Markers of Intimate Partner Violence We are outlining an updated approach for providers dealing with women who experience intimate partner violence by recognizing the long-term physical, mental and social health consequences, providing referrals, and helping them create a managment plan.

 

   2. Better Questions for Physical Health: Pregnancy as a Window to Future Health Care  We are creating a roadmap from a common event like pregnancy and using it as a window into long-term, multi-cultural health care status well beyond the traditional gynecological approach. We are giving providers information to screen, diagnose and create a plan for each patient based on their response to pregnancy.

 

We are developing resource information for care providers that help them target the patient's risk for depression, heart disease, obesity and diabetes well before symptoms occur. This information will help providers and their patients make better decisions in support of an integrated approach to long-term physical, social and mental health.

 

We are creating a website to serve as a clearinghouse for research, data, indicators, treatments plans, and processes and discussion.

We will know we are successful

 

-When more research is directed to those areas that will improve policy and outcomes in women's health. 

 

-When payers use the data that proves the value of integrated on-going care to provide appropriate coverage.

 

-When new practices and therapies flow through a ready channel from theory to clinical implementation.

 

-When the social, mental and physical health of a woman is routinely considered by providers and payers who respond with a plan. For example, when every post-partum mother is automatically given a health care roadmap that links obstetrics to her ongoing primary care

 

-When communication barriers are overcome so women are better able to access the system. For example, when every victim of intimate partner violence is automatically referred to appropriate care and followed up with a safety plan in place.

 

-When the Rhode Island Women's Health Report Card demonstrates improved quality indicators that distinguish us nationally.       


 

For more information

Womens Health Council of RI

info@whcconference.org
401 444 2896


For mail correspondence

Women's Health Council of RI

c/o Lifespan Health Connection
593 Eddy Street
Providence, RI 02903