Ify Osunkwo, MD: Principal Investigator EMBRACE Network for Sickle Cell Disease.

CHS/Levine Cancer Institute’s Sickle Cell Disease Team is excited to announce the receipt of a $4.3 million grant from the Health Resources Service Administration (HRSA) focused on improving access to care for persons living with SCD in the Southeast USA. Under the leadership of the SCD Enterprise Medical Director, the team submitted their proposal titled “Education and Mentoring to BRing Access to CarE SCD Network (EMBRACE)” in response to the HRSA SCD Treatment Demonstration Program RFA 2017-2021. The EMBRACE Network is led by a multiple Principal Investigator team. Ifeyinwa (Ify) Osunkwo, MD from CHS/LCI will serve as the administrative PI. She will share grant oversight with co-PIs Julie Kanter, MD Director of Sickle Cell Research at Medical University of South Carolina, and John J. Strouse, MD Director of Adult Sickle Cell Program at Duke University. The EMBRACE Network includes investigators from eight states in the southeastern USA (AL, FL, GA, KY, MS, NC, SC, TN).
This 4-year project aims to improve access to high-quality care for people with SCD in the Southeast United States using a regional collaborative based on successful, flexible models of care enhancement that leverages Education and Mentoring of Providers and Health Systems. The EMBRACE Collaborative will achieve this by:
[a] Increasing the number of providers treating SCD per the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Evidence-Based Management of Sickle Cell Disease Expert Panel Report (NHLBI SCD Guidelines)
[b] Enhancing use of virtual care models including: tele-mentoring, telemedicine, and other technologically-based provider support strategies to increase the number of providers adhering to evidence-based SCD care, and [
{c] Developing and implementing strategies to improve access to quality care emphasizing individual and family engagement and adolescent transition to adult care in a medical home.
Carolinas HealthCare System will be the administrative and data coordinating center for this regional initiative. The EMBRACE project is fully aligned with our system’s mission and vision and will significantly impact our ability to improve lives via establishing sustainable value-based care models leveraging existing and new partners throughout the southeast region.
Ifeyinwa (Ify) Osunkwo MD MPH

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