Disrupting Healthcare Disparities: Dr. Mary O'Connor's Vision for Equitable Care

PR Newswire
Tuesday, June 11, 2024 at 12:10pm UTC

Disrupting Healthcare Disparities: Dr. Mary O'Connor's Vision for Equitable Care

PR Newswire

In the latest Disruption Interruption Podcast episode, host Karla Jo Helms interviews Dr. Mary O'Connor, Co-Founder and Chief Medical Officer at Vori Health. Dr. O'Connor discusses Vori Health's integrated team approach to musculoskeletal care, emphasizing patient engagement and the benefits of telehealth for accessibility. She highlights how Vori Health addresses health disparities, especially in women's health, through a hybrid virtual and in-person services model.

TAMPA BAY, Fla., June 11, 2024 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- The healthcare industry is undergoing transformative changes, driven by technology and patient-centered care focused on outcomes. Predictions suggest a future dominated by data interoperability, consumer-driven initiatives, and a wellness-oriented approach, highlighting innovative and efficient patient-tailored models. (1) In this conversation on the promising shift in healthcare, Karla Jo Helms (KJ) host of the Disruption Interruption podcast, and Dr. Mary O'Connor, a renowned trailblazer in the healthcare industry, discuss Vori Health and its focus on leading a transformative shift in musculoskeletal (MSK) care through a pioneering, holistic, and virtual-first model. This innovative approach addresses patient needs comprehensively, offering a blend of advanced technology and personalized care that sets new standards in the healthcare industry. Her vision for Vori Health is deeply rooted in her commitment to innovative and disruptive approaches to healthcare.

"The healthcare system is so fragmented that we miss opportunities to help patients recover and embrace healthier paths toward wellness," O'Connor emphasizes. "We need a more coordinated approach to effective non-surgical care."

"The healthcare system is so fragmented that we miss opportunities to help patients recover and embrace healthier paths toward wellness," O'Connor emphasizes. "We need a more coordinated approach to effective non-surgical care."

Integrated Virtual Therapy Model
Central to Vori Health's philosophy is the integration of care from a diverse team of experts, including MSK specialist physicians, physical therapists, health coaches, and registered dietitians.

A significant challenge in traditional healthcare is low patient compliance with physical therapy due to high costs, resulting in only 30% of patients completing their treatment plans. Vori Health addresses this by offering virtual physical therapy, making high-quality care more accessible and convenient. "Virtual physical therapy has shown remarkable results," noted Dr. O'Connor, highlighting that patients meet with an MSK expert physician and a physical therapist in their first video visit, streamlining the process. "Collaboration between the physician and physical therapist brings a higher level of expertise and a more effective care plan," Dr. O'Connor explained.

O'Connor believes telehealth is the future of healthcare, emphasizing the convenience and efficiency of virtual physical therapy. Her vision includes a hybrid model that combines in-person and virtual therapy.

Addressing Healthcare Disparities
Despite overall life expectancy gains in the U.S., disparities in morbidity and mortality by gender and race/ethnicity persist. Barriers to healthcare access, such as delays, high costs, and lack of insurance, significantly impact women's health. Women, especially Black and Hispanic women, face greater challenges in accessing affordable and consistent care, leading to higher out-of-pocket costs and difficulty paying medical bills compared to men. (2)

Beyond physical therapy, Dr. O'Connor, author of the book, Taking Care of You: The Empowered Woman's Guide to Better Health, highlighted the broader implications of telehealth in addressing health disparities, especially in women's health. "Health disparities are real. Women, especially women of color, those in rural areas, and those with lower socioeconomic status, do not receive the same quality of healthcare. It's crucial that we recognize and address these issues."

As telehealth evolves, it promises to enhance patient engagement and accessibility, breaking traditional barriers. "Our goal is a hybrid model combining the best of virtual and in-person care," concluded Dr. O'Connor. She advocates for integrating telehealth and understanding sex-based differences in treatment to create a more equitable, patient-centered healthcare system.

Disrupting Virtual Orthopedic Healthcare with Dr. Mary O'Conner: https://omny.fm/shows/disruption-interruption/disrupting-virtual-orthopedic-healthcare-with-dr-m?in_playlist=podcast
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/maryoconnormd/
Twitter: https://x.com/MaryOConnorMD
Company Website: https://www.vorihealth.com/
Company LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/vori-health/

Disruption Interruption is the podcast where you will hear from today's biggest Industry Disruptors. Learn what motivated them to bring about innovation and how they overcame opposition to adoption.

Disruption Interruption can be listened to in Apple's App Store and Spotify.

About Disruption InterruptionTM:
Disruption is happening on an unprecedented scale, impacting all manner of industries— MedTech, Finance, IT, eCommerce, shipping, logistics, and more—and COVID has moved their timelines up a full decade or more. But WHO are these disruptors and when did they say, "THAT'S IT! I'VE HAD IT!"? Time to Disrupt and Interrupt with host Karla Jo "KJ" Helms, veteran communications disruptor. KJ interviews badasses who are disrupting their industries and altering economic networks that have become antiquated with an establishment resistant to progress. She delves into uncovering secrets from industry rebels and quiet revolutionaries that uncover common traits—and not-so-common—that are changing our economic markets… and lives. Visit the world's key pioneers that persist to success, despite arrows in their backs at http://www.disruption-interruption.com.

About Mary O'Connor:
Dr. Mary O'Connor, Co-Founder and Chief Medical Officer at Vori Health, leads an award-winning nationwide virtual specialty medical practice dedicated to treating musculoskeletal pain effectively. With a career spanning 25 years, she aims to revolutionize healthcare. Dr. O'Connor is a co-author of "Taking Care of You," an orthopedic surgeon, health equity advocate, and former U.S. Olympic athlete. She held prestigious positions at Mayo Clinic and Yale School of Medicine, championing health equity and leading the Movement is Life coalition to eliminate musculoskeletal health disparities. Recognized for her efforts, she received the 2023 Diversity Awards from both the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgery and American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons. Dr. O'Connor earned her medical degree from Drexel University College of Medicine and completed her orthopedic residency and fellowship at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, following her graduation from Yale University.

About Karla Jo Helms:
Karla Jo Helms is the Chief Evangelist and Anti-PR® Strategist for JOTO PR Disruptors™. Karla Jo learned firsthand how unforgiving business can be when millions of dollars are on the line — and how the control of public opinion often determines whether one company is happily chosen, or another is brutally rejected. Being an alumnus of crisis management, Karla Jo has worked with litigation attorneys, private investigators, and the media to help restore companies of goodwill into the good graces of public opinion — Karla Jo operates on the ethic of getting it right the first time, not relying on second chances and doing what it takes to excel. Helms speaks globally on public relations, how the PR industry itself has lost its way, and how, in the right hands, corporations can harness the power of Anti-PR to drive markets and impact market perception.

Riley, Kevin. "Why 2024 Is Pivotal to Embracing Value-Based Care, Data Integration." Health Data Management, undefined, 16 Jan. 2024, http://www.healthdatamanagement.com/articles/why-2024-is-pivotal-to-embracing-value-based-care-data-integration.

Rapp, Kristen Schorpp, et al. "State-Level Sexism and Women's Health Care Access in the United States: Differences by Race/Ethnicity, 2014-2019." American Journal of Public Health, U.S. National Library of Medicine, Oct. 2021, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8561184/.

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