Arkansas | 50 states of population health

ROB STEELE, MD. Chief Strategy Officer of Arkansas Children's and President of Arkansas Children's Medical Group (Little Rock)

On the top challenge

"The true health issues Arkansas children face aren't unique: Kids in every state struggle with obesity, chronic disease and social determinants that block access to care. But children in Arkansas have lacked an asset their peers in other states do have, namely, an infrastructure that brings together partners and resources to coordinate their care across many venues. Our state has an established history of prioritizing children's healthcare, but its largely rural layout has created access obstacles."

On the hospital's response

"We're excited to have resources to dismantle those obstacles today. Together with a dedicated team of local providers and stakeholders, Arkansas Children's is building out an infrastructure to engineer a fundamental transformation in how healthcare is delivered to our kids. Last year, we launched the nation's first statewide pediatric clinically integrated network while also investing heavily in IT infrastructure. In February, we opened the nation's newest freestanding children's hospital in the state's northwest corner near Bentonville. So, Arkansas children will see improvement in everything from asthma management to dental care access because the right solutions are being developed in concert with other champions who care deeply about seeing our children thrive." 

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