Special Projects Fund

Project Title

Hepatitis C Virus Infection Telemedicine Collaborative Care Center

Grant Amount


Priority Area

Special Projects Fund

Date Awarded

May 7, 2013








Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is a major public health concern in the United States, especially in New York State.

The Institute of Medicine estimates that 2.7–3.9 million Americans are living with HCV, and as many as 75% are unaware that they are infected. HCV is preventable and curable, yet it is estimated that fewer than 10% of patients with HCV have received treatment. With recently updated Centers for Disease Control and Prevention screening guidelines, there is a growing need for primary care providers to identify and treat patients with HCV. With funding from NYHealth, the Mount Sinai School of Medicine (MSSM) created a project to address the management and treatment complexity of HCV.

Under this grant, the MSSM project included an online portal, which provided Web-based resources and consultation for HCV patients and providers. There was also a telemedicine component, which trained primary care providers through teleconsulting and telementoring, and optimized treatment evaluations and strategies for patients with HCV. The project was modeled after the Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes (ECHO) initiative at the University of New Mexico, which used video-conferencing to train primary care providers. MSSM consulted with Project ECHO to understand and incorporate lessons learned from its experiences. MSSM also partnered with the Community Health Care Association of New York State and the New York State Department of Health AIDS Institute to pilot the project in four federally qualified health centers (FQHCs) where providers had limited experience in screening for and treating HCV. During the second year the project was expanded to inclue all FQHC’s across the State, as well as community-based primary care providers.