Renown Health & Hometown Health leverage cloud technology to improve access to care and coverage A person’s ability to access health services has a profound effect on every aspect of his or her health, yet almost 1 in 4 Americans do not have a primary care provider (PCP) or a health center where they can receive regular medical services. In addition, because of concerns about COVID-19, the CDC reports that an estimated 41% of U.S. adults have delayed or avoided medical care including urgent or emergency care (12%) and routine care (32%). Avoidance of urgent or emergency care was more prevalent among unpaid caregivers for adults, persons with underlying medical conditions, Black adults, Hispanic adults, young adults, and persons with disabilities. With the goal of improving health by helping people get the healthcare services they need, Renown Health, based in Reno, NV, is leveraging Amazon Web Services (AWS) to enhance access to care. As part of Renown’s continued journey to transform healthcare, the healthcare network is implementing Amazon Connect – AWS’s omnichannel cloud contact center service. The easy to use and quick to deploy solution allows patients to easily access customer service for Renown’s Hometown Health insurance plan, schedule imaging appointments, EPIC MyChart patient electronic medical record support and general customer service. Customer service is now available in multiple languages over the phone, and via online live agent chat and email, making it easier and more convenient for people to make appointments for the care they need. Amazon Connect enables Renown Health to scale up to handle unexpected high call volumes and scale back rapidly. The solution also provides call center agents the flexibility they need to work remotely, without compromising the customer experience. “Renown is proud to be one of the first nonprofit healthcare organizations in the country to use Amazon Web Services as part of a comprehensive customer access and outreach program,” says Tony Slonim, MD, DrPH, President & CEO, Renown Health. “We are excited to deploy their innovative contact center technology to assist us in connecting people with Renown medical providers and health services. Our goal is to make connections quick, easy and convenient, so more people will be encouraged to receive the health care services they need.” “Today’s generation of healthcare consumers expect a friction-less experience—from finding a caregiver, to booking an appointment, to receiving treatment. With this new solution, Renown Health will be able to meet their customers’ expectations faster and more efficiently than ever before,” said Phoebe Yang, General Manager, Healthcare at AWS. “AWS looks forward to working with the innovative team at Renown Health as they leverage the power of the cloud to improve the health of communities they serve." “Especially with COVID, but even before, many people don’t get recommended healthcare services, like cancer screenings, because they lack a primary care provider, or access to health care professionals. At Renown Health, we have a commitment to caring for people, with Reliable and Exact Care and the ability to connect — in person and virtually — to help ensure people get the care they need, when and where they need it,” says Thomas Graf, MD, Chief Clinical & Quality Officer at Renown. “Our goal is to reduce barriers and enhance access, so all who need care can receive care,” says Candace Dietrich, director of the Engagement Center at Renown. “AWS technology is helping to improve the customer experience and drive efficiencies. Our collaboration with AWS makes health care more accessible for all, which ultimately is better for the entire community.” “Amazon Connect is a key component of our digital front door virtual care strategy and supports our customer service goals and Reliable & Exact Care at Renown,” said Chuck Podesta, Chief Information Technology Officer at Renown. “Hometown Health is a community-focused organization and with support from AWS, we continue to improve the health and well-being of the communities we serve,” says David Hansen, Chief Executive Officer of Nevada’s largest not-for- profit health insurance provider. “We are proud to have a care and coverage network serving half a billion people across 100,000 square miles across Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California, and committed to creating healthier communities.” About Renown Health Renown Health is the region’s largest, locally governed, not-for-profit integrated healthcare network serving Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. With a diverse workforce of more than 7,000 employees, Renown has fostered a longstanding culture of excellence, determination and innovation. The organization comprises a trauma center, two acute care hospitals, a children’s hospital, a rehabilitation hospital, a medical group and urgent care network, and the region’s largest, locally owned not-for-profit insurance company, Hometown Health. Renown is currently enrolling participants in the world’s largest community-based genetic population health study, the Healthy Nevada Project®. For more information, visit renown.org.
Chuck Podesta, national IT leader to use technology to improve the health and well-being of Nevadans. Renown Health is pleased to announce Charles (Chuck) Podesta has been named Chief Information Officer. Podesta is a seasoned executive with over 30 years of experience leading some of the nation’s top healthcare IT teams. He has literally worked from coast to coast, and is excited to bring his talents to Nevada. “We are pleased to bring an experienced and talented leader like Chuck Podesta to lead our information and technology areas at Renown,” said Tony Slonim, MD, DrPH, President & CEO of Renown. “As Chief Information Officer, he will have the opportunity to foster a culture of innovation and excellence in information technology which serves hundreds of thousands of people across the state and the nation. Chuck will use the power of technology to bring a new level of convenience to patients and providers, and will use his talents and team to improve the health and well-being of Nevadans.” Chuck most recently served as Interim Chief Information Officer for UCONN Health’s John Dempsey Medical Center, School of Medicine and Clinical Research IT. Prior to that, Chuck served as CIO for UCI Health/UC Irvine School of Medicine and the University of California Health System. He also served as CIO for University of Vermont Health Network/Fletcher Allen Health; Steward Health/Caritas Christi Healthcare; Berkshire Health; Baystate Health and UMASS Medical Center, all in the New England area. Podesta specializes in creating, resourcing and implementing strategic technology plans; maximizing the power of the EPIC electronic medical record; streamlining governance and priorities; aligning IT and medical informatics needs across affiliated entities including a medical school environment, Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs), Clinically Integrated Networks (CINs) and medical practices; partners to implement best of breed customer-driven digital tools; leads participation in state-wide health exchanges (HIE) and coaches and mentors IT teams. “Chuck’s experience and strengths in a variety of diverse and complex environments make him the perfect leader for us at this important time in our history,” explains Josiah (Sy) Johnson, Chief of Staff for Renown. Chuck will assure we are leading with innovative and contemporary approaches, and integrating technology and expertise in our ongoing pursuit of excellence in improving health and healthcare in Nevada. “I am honored and excited to join the Renown Health family and the northern Nevada community,” says Chuck Podesta, Chief Information Officer. “I am impressed with the innovation and transformation at Renown; which has earned it a reputation as one of the nation’s leading health systems. I look forward to joining Renown Health at this exciting time in its history. I am excited to bring my skills and experience to create a positive experience when people use our technology. I am looking forward to leading the organization on this important journey.” Podesta is a graduate of the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts and an active member of CHIME, HIMSS and the Society for Information Management (SIM). Podesta will begin at Renown on July 12. About Renown Health Renown Health is the region’s largest, local not-for-profit integrated healthcare network serving Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. With a diverse workforce of more than 7,200 employees, Renown has fostered a longstanding culture of excellence, determination and innovation. The organization comprises a trauma center, two acute care hospitals, a children’s hospital, a rehabilitation hospital, a medical group and urgent care network, and the region’s largest, locally owned not-for-profit insurance company, Hometown Health. Clinical institutes include: Cancer, Heart and Vascular Heath and Neurosciences. Renown is currently enrolling participants in the world’s largest community-based genetic population health study, the Healthy Nevada Project®. For more information, visit renown.org.