Health Matters A Letter from Our President
Lori Rice-Spearman Headshot
Artie Limmer
We continue to seek innovative health care delivery models to address unmet health care needs.

Taking Care of Those Who Take Care of Us

TTUHSC has made significant inroads in reducing the number of West Texas communities with little to no access to primary care, and we continue to seek innovative delivery models to address existing unmet health care needs.

One of the innovative models we have developed is to push health care into communities, as we did recently with Marathon, Texas. Historically, health care pulls services away from a smaller community, requiring residents to seek care in larger metropolitan areas. This type of model provides access to care but at an insurmountable cost regarding navigability by the user.

TTUHSC can push health care into a rural community by working collaboratively with their existing providers and utilizing telemedicine. We pioneered such a model and have used it for many years. Now, with telemedicine surging as a solution to health care shortages in the post-pandemic landscape, the legislature is taking notice.

As recently as last month, presenting our legislative appropriations request with the Senate Finance Committee, I had the opportunity on multiple occasions to share with our state legislators and leaders TTUHSC’s efforts to address health care shortages in West Texas. We see the potential to enhance care through telehealth and are working with the Texas Legislature this session to secure $13.5 million over the next two years to establish an Institute for Telehealth Technology and Innovation. With our multiple campus locations, we can establish telemedicine hubs for increased collaboration in West Texas to expand care. In addition, our research experts can strengthen their work in examining the efficacy of health care outcomes, further improving health care via telehealth. Finally, the institute will enhance our academic expertise by preparing health care providers through training to use telemedicine and biomedical technology for care delivery.

TTUHSC is uniquely situated geographically to care for the people in this region, and we will continue to partner with the communities we serve to develop innovative models of delivering health care.

Lori Rice-Spearman, PhD, (Health Professions ’86)
Texas Tech university Health Sciences Center