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Local Coalitions

Improving Health Care – Community by Community

The goals of Remaking American Medicine™…Health Care for the 21st Century (RAM) and the national outreach campaign were to stimulate a dialogue and to issue a call to action to improve the quality of health care. They were intended to help empower viewers to become advocates for better care and to motivate, inspire and connect individuals, organizations and institutions.

In order to accomplish these objectives, the campaign encouraged the creation of local RAM coalitions representing private purchasers, providers, policy-makers, regulators, public broadcasting, consumer advocates, patients and their families. At the time of the broadcast of the series on PBS in October 2006, 26 RAM coalitions were actively engaged in a variety of local outreach activities. Each coalition selected a particular quality issue, set goals, established alliances, pooled resources and are taking positive action – community by community.



PBS Incentive Grants Awarded

Many PBS stations from around the country submitted applications to the Remaking American Medicine PBS-incentive grants program. They planned on creating a wide range of exciting community-based activities in conjunction with QIOs and affiliates of National Partners. RAM's lead sponsor, the Amgen Foundation, generously donated the funds to provide grants to the following recipients.

The members of the PBS Grant Review Committee spent a considerable amount of time reviewing the applications and coming together for a day-long meeting to provide their expertise, to share thoughtful and comprehensive discussion on each application, to deliberate on the very difficult selection process and to award individual grant amounts.



St. Louis, Missouri

KETC, in partnership with Primaris, Missouri’s QIO, developed a RAM coalition that included more than 30 local organizations, including representatives from the AARP, American Heart Association, Missouri Hospital Association and the Missouri Organization of Nurse Leaders. Their ambitious statewide public outreach campaign focused on issues involving patient safety, medical errors and electronic medical records with a special emphasis on rural health concerns. The overarching goal was to encourage consumers to become stronger advocates for their own health care and to facilitate a public dialogue about the issues addressed in the national series.

The cornerstone of their effort was a four-part documentary series, Remaking Missouri Medicine, designed to inspire and empower viewers. Produced by KETC, the series featured local Champions of Change and explored advances in patient care, and how technology is advancing both chronic disease management and facilitating rural health care. Remaking Missouri Medicine premiered in early 2006 and was rebroadcast in October, at the time of the airing of the national series. At the end of the local broadcast, viewers were directed to an 800 number for additional information. To date, KETC has received more than 8,500 requests related to both the local and national programs.

In addition, the coalition developed a 12-page companion consumer resource guide, Remaking Missouri Medicine: Guide to Quality Healthcare, which provided consumer tips on patients’ rights and chronic disease management. Since its April release, more than 5,000 copies have been downloaded on the KETC Web site, and there have been more than 40,000 page views. In addition, more than 10,000 printed copies have been distributed across the state.

Coalition partners held 75 RAM screening events throughout the state. They made presentations to hospitals, home health agencies and providers, often in conjunction with the national premiere. Five hundred DVD copies of Remaking Missouri Medicine as well as the consumer guide were distributed at these events. Coalition members attended the KETC-hosted event, where they were able to watch a satellite broadcast of the National Symposium on September 27. Guests included RAM coalition partners and more than 50 medical professionals.

See the coalitions' Web site at:


Amy Shaw
Vice President for Education Services
(314) 512-9041

Matt Heger
Media Relations
Primaris Health
(573) 817-8300 x 136

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Indianapolis, Indiana

WFYI, in partnership with Health Care Excel, the state QIO, developed the Indiana RAM coalition that focused on medication management, communication with health care providers, patient safety in hospitals and chronic disease management. Coalition members included the AARP, the American Cancer Society, the American Heart Association, the Indiana University School of Medicine, the Indiana Bureau of Aging, University of Indianapolis School of Nursing and the Riley Hospital for Children, among others.

WFYI and Health Care Excel were involved in a series of events reaching more than 400,000 providers and consumers. This included presentations at a number of state conferences and health fairs, including The Women’s Health Conference in April 2006, and a Citizen’s Health Care Forum at Butler University. Matthew Eisen, co-executive producer of RAM, also made a presentation to 300 Indianan health care providers at their June 2005 Quality Health Care Conference. WFYI taped the broadcast of the National Symposium and distributed it to coalition members for use at local community events.

In collaboration with the station and Health Care Excel, the Indiana University School of Medicine also produced several related radio programs that were heard throughout the state. Julie Moretz, a national Champion of Change, was interviewed on the local public radio station. Her comments about patient-centered care can be heard on the University’s Web site. (
By the end of the campaign, RAM coalition members had distributed RAM-related materials to more than 1.7 million providers, purchasers and policy-makers. This included the monthly consumer Healthcare Tips that were featured on the station’s Web site. More than 200 hospitals received these materials thanks to the Indiana Health and Hospital Association and the Indiana Primary Health Care Association.

Working with its coalition members, WFYI produced four RAM-related television spots encouraging patients to become advocates for their own health care. The spots were broadcast on the station in October, streamed on its Web site and were available as podcasts. A series of Consumer Healthcare Tips, provided by coalition members, appeared on WFYI’s Web site, and were featured in six issues of the station’s Member Magazine, which reaches over 28,000 families.

WFYI's RAM web page:


Gail Strong
Outreach Director
(317) 636-2020

Ellen Murphy
Public Relations Director
Health Care Excel
(812) 234-1499


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Tampa, Florida

WEDU and FMQAI, Florida’s QIO, focused on diabetes prevention and management within the Hispanic and Latino communities. Coalition partners included the American Diabetes Association (ADA) and the Tampa Bay Healthcare Collaborative, which consists of more than a dozen citywide health care organizations including Hillsborough County Health Department and the West Central Florida Area Agency on Aging. It also included local and statewide stakeholders, health care professionals, community organizations, non-professional caregivers and consumers.

The development of the Tampa coalition grew out of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) diabetes special studies grant awarded to Lumetra, the California QIO. Lumetra produced three bilingual videos entitled Viva La Vida! (Live Your Life!) that focused on the patient and provider experience and the importance of community partnerships in managing diabetes.

In collaboration with the QIO, WEDU produced Diabetes & You, a 30-minute program featuring local Champions of Change. The program, which aired originally in the fall of 2005, was rebroadcast in October 2006, and was offered to all of the Florida PBS stations.
Immediately after the program, ADA volunteers responded to viewer calls and provided copies of Diabetes & You, a bilingual consumer booklet focusing on the prevention and treatment of diabetes. Print ads in the October and November issues of Premiere, the station’s member magazine reached 30,000 families each month. A Champion of Change story also ran in the October 2006 issue along with being featured on the cover.

Both Diabetes & You and Remaking American Medicine were featured on the WEDU website (, and during the October premiere, both broadcast events also appeared at the top of the Community Involvement page. As part of the publicity efforts, Estrella Lopez-Clement, a local Champion of Change and a diabetes expert, was interviewed on a radio program entitled “Oye Latino” broadcast on WMFF-FM, a commercial Latino radio station.

In addition, RAM coalition members held diabetes screenings and discussion groups and distributed program clips to providers throughout the Tampa Bay area. A companion Web site,, featured consumer tools developed by coalition partners. To date, more than 2,500 consumer booklets have been distributed and 900 copies have been downloaded from the FMQAI Web site.

FMQAI's RAM web page:


Larry Jopek
VP of Community Partnerships
(813) 254-9338

David Ruscitti,
Corporate Communications Coordinator
(813) 865-3255

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Salt Lake City, Utah

KUED, working in partnership with HealthInsight, the state QIO, developed a statewide coalition that focused on chronic disease management and access to health care for underserved populations. The RAM coalition was built on an existing public television station outreach initiative entitled, Health Matters. Coalition members included the AARP, the Utah Medical Association, the University of Utah School of Medicine and Intermountain Health Care, among others.

The station produced a special edition of its weekly public affairs series, Utah Now addressing the issues faced by the uninsured. The program aired on October 13 and 15, 2006, around the time of the broadcast of the national series. With heart disease and diabetes at epidemic proportions, the program addressed how the uninsured have difficulty coping with chronic disease, and how the related costs are affecting the health care system. A local Champion of Change who operates a free clinic that provides preventative care services to the uninsured was featured in the program.

The coalition held a screening of Program Three from the RAM series, The Stealth Epidemic, on October 17 on the University of Utah. Dr. David Sundwall, Executive Director, Utah Department of Health was a featured speaker, and a panel provided their perspective on chronic disease management.

KUED also produced a bilingual consumer brochure, entitled Be a Part of Your Health Care Team that provided tips on how to communicate with a health care provider, and included a form to keep track of medications. The brochure was given to coalition members. Over 1,000 copies were distributed at the screening events and health events and it was posted on the KUED Web site. The station also promoted RAM in Seven, KUED’s member magazine, on its Web site, and through an E-Newsletter that reaches 21,000 readers.

In addition to promoting the series to their members and constituents, RAM coalition members conducted 16 statewide forums in October and November and provided consumer tools for a special handout, RAM Workshops in a Box, which is being distributed to hospitals and medical colleges throughout the state.


Jacqui Voland
Outreach Coordinator
(801) 585-3523

Christie North
Project Coordinator
(801) 892-0155


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Columbia, South Carolina

South Carolina’s rural community is leading the nation in the percentage of its population suffering from chronic diseases. South Carolina Educational Television (SCETV); Carolinas Center for Medical Excellence, the state’s QIO; AARP; the South Carolina Medical Association; South Carolina Office of Aging; Clemson University; and 10 other organizations undertook a statewide campaign encouraging patients to manage their own health care, with a special focus on seniors.

Countdown to Better Care: Ten Tips to Help Protect Yourself Against Medical Errors, a 30-minute documentary produced by SCETV, aired on October 15 and November 5 in conjunction with the national series. It was streamed on the Web site SCETV also aired a series of public information spots, Medical Error Countdown throughout October.

To support the RAM outreach campaign, coalition members selected 12 local Champions of Change that were featured on the station Web site, in a variety of publications and in the press. The coalition provided patient resources including lists of free medical clinics and services. Coalition members distributed campaign materials to thousands of constituents throughout the campaign, and made 26 presentations to hospitals, home health care agencies and nursing homes.

In 2005 and 2006, RAM coalition representatives distributed consumer information at the “Health Day for Seniors” during the South Carolina State Fair. The station’s FM station also broadcast similar information during its broadcasts from the State Fair


Carolyn Holderman
Director of Higher Ed/Medical Education
(803) 737-3447


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Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota

Twin Cities Public Television (TPT) incorporated the RAM campaign within their previously designed Community Healthcare Awareness Initiative (CHAI). CHAI focused on chronic disease management, specifically diabetes, and access to health care for the underserved. TPT, worked in partnership with Stratis Health, the state QIO, and the Buyers Health Care Action Group expanded the work of this alliance.

TPT produced a documentary, Remaking Minnesota Medicine, which aired in conjunction with the national series. It focused on the barriers in the insurance system that directly affects diabetics. The program also highlighted efforts by employers in the private and public sectors that are trying to reduce health care disparities. The program was streamed on the station’s Web site, and DVD copies were given to RAM coalition members for use in their organizations, as well as in staff development settings within hospitals, nursing homes and purchasers.

In October, TPT and Stratis Health hosted community forums in Minneapolis, Duluth and Rochester. A consumer tool kit, including materials provided from several coalition members, was distributed at these events. It was also disseminated to health care organizations and related caregiver support groups, public libraries and to public television viewers.


Vicky Mendez


Kate Johnston
Media and Public Relations Specialist
Stratis Health
(952) 854-3306


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Detroit, Michigan

In Detroit, an aging and predominately African-American population has been severely affected by chronic disease. Detroit Public Television led the RAM coalition, and mounted a statewide campaign focusing on health literacy and chronic disease management, in collaboration with MPRO, the Michigan QIO. Coalition members included the Henry Ford Health System, Wayne State University, Detroit Medical Center and St. John’s Health, among others. In September 2006, DPTV produced a special program on this issue within its weekly public affairs series, American Black Journal. Toni Flowers, RN-Underserved Project Manager at MPRO, appeared on the program and discussed chronic disease and health care access.

DPTV and MPRO were successful in gaining additional campaign funds, which facilitated the production of a 30-minute documentary, A Health Partnership, featuring local Champions of Change. The documentary aired in October in conjunction with the third program in the RAM series, The Stealth Epidemic. During the broadcast, volunteers from MPRO and seven other health organizations staffed a phone bank and provided advice on chronic disease management. In addition to Detroit, public television viewers in Mt. Pleasant and Grand Rapids, Michigan saw the program. And, thanks to the additional funding, program clips were also made available to health care providers for viewing in their patient waiting rooms.

Coalition members also played an active role in the promotion of the series. For example, on September 27, the Henry Ford Health System hosted a preview screening of Remaking American Medicine and A Healthy Partnership for scores of providers and RAM coalition members.

With assistance from DPTV, MPRO is developing a Physicians Literacy Workshop to be held at Wayne State University, another RAM coalition partner in early winter 2007. The focus will be on cultural competencies. MPRO is developing the curriculum and providing experts for the workshop.


Anne Patten
Director of Outreach and Program Promotions
(313) 876-8130

Sue Burns
Manager of Public Community and Marketing
(248) 465-7300

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Richmond/Charlottesville, Virginia

WCVE/WHTJ, joined forces with the Virginia Health Quality Center (VHQC), the state QIO; the AARP; the American Cancer Society; the American Academy of Pediatrics and 30 other health care organizations to address the issues of chronic disease prevention and management, and the statewide nursing shortages.

The Virginia public television stations produced two public affairs programs to air in conjunction with RAM – “Remaking Virginia Medicine” and a live call-in program focusing on alternative health care. The coalition helped provide Champions of Change and promoted the broadcast of the national series and the two locally produced public affairs programs to their members and constituents across the state.

The QIO assisted in the production of a Passport for Health over 50, a patient resource guide about preventative health care and chronic disease management. This guide was made available at the end of the two television programs produced by the two Virginia PBS stations, and was also distributed at community events. RAM coalition members also hosted several community screenings and discussion groups at the time of the premiere of the series.


John H. Felton
VP for Programming and Production
(804) 560-8120

Sallie S. Cook, M.D.
Chief Medical Officer
Virginia Health Quality Center
(804) 289-5320

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Chicago, Illinois

WTTW’s RAM campaign focused on diabetes prevention and management, primarily aimed at the Chicago area Hispanic and African American communities. RAM Coalition partners included Illinois Foundation for Quality Health Care (IFQHC), the state QIO; Evanston Healthcare System; the Niehoff School of Nursing at Loyola University; the University of Chicago; the Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science, Swedish Covenant Hospital; South Shore Hospital; and the Thorek Memorial Hospital among others.

Coalition members conducted a RAM screening and discussion of the first program in the RAM series, “Silent Killer” in October. Three thousand copies of a diabetes prevention and management booklet, produced by IFQHC were distributed at this event.


Shaunese Teamer
Manager of Community Outreach & National Publicity
(773) 509-5441



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Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

WHYY-TV is a member of the Caring Community Coalition, a coalition of more than 100 health care organizations located throughout the Philadelphia area. They include the American of College Physicians, Drexel University College of Nursing and Health Professions, the Pennsylvania Department of Health Policy and the Delaware Valley Healthcare Council. WHYY involved the Caring Community Coalition in their RAM campaign. The primary focus of the campaign was on medical education, quality health care and the need to improve providers’ communication skills with their patients. The RAM coalition decided to focus on medical education and to improve communication skills of providers, and then selected the Longitudinal Experience to Appreciate Patient Perspectives (LEAPP) program at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine as a Champion of Change. LEAPP is a longitudinal study that pairs medical students with chronically ill patients to measure communication skills.

WHYY produced three programs in support of RAM. The first was a documentary about the issues addressed by LEAPP. It aired four times, after each program of the national series, and was rebroadcast by WHYY the following day. Thanks to these initial efforts with LEAP and RAM, WHYY is now seeking funds to help follow medical students for a year and to track their involvement with chronically ill patients.

The second RAM related program was a live town hall meeting and Webcast that took place in WHYY’s studios on October 30. Entitled Remaking Delaware Valley, the program featured two panel discussions led by local Champions of Change who explored the issues of patient safety, MERSA, chronic disease management and the patient-physician relationship. The Champions discussed several innovative quality improvement initiatives in Greater Philadelphia area. Dr. Richard P. Shannon, Vice Chair for Clinical Affairs in the Department of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, who appeared in the national public television series, was also present during this town hall meeting. Dr. Shannon discussed his pioneering efforts aimed at eradicating hospital-acquired infections.

WHYY-FM also produced an hour-long radio documentary, Healing Healthcare, as a companion to RAM. It premiered on October 9 and was offered to NPR stations nationwide. WHYY-FM rebroadcast the program on October 15, and then archived it on the station Website. The program, which addressed the issue of patient-providers relationships, featured interviews with local and national health care professionals, journalists and policymakers. Guests included Steven Peltz, founder and managing partner of Peltz Practice Management and Consulting Services; Dr. Henry Simmons, president, National Coalition on Health Care; Dr. Barry Bub, author of Communication Skills that Heal; and Avery Comarow, senior health writer at U.S. News & World Report.

WHYY also hosted a live event in connection with the National Symposium. Twenty area health care professionals attended the in-studio screening and RAM coalition leaders conducted discussions after the Symposium. RAM coalition members will continue to address the issues of medical education and patient- and family-centered care in their respective organizations. WHYY will track these efforts and report back to the coalition.


Willo Carey
Executive Director, Wider Horizons
(215) 351-0540



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Baton Rouge, Louisiana 

The goal of the statewide campaign, led by Louisiana Public Broadcasting and the Louisiana Health Care Review (LHCR) was to increase consumers’ understanding of how to access health care delivery. The RAM coalition, which involved more than ten statewide partners including the Louisiana AARP, the Louisiana Nursing Home Association; the Louisiana Hospital Association; Volunteer Hospital Association; and the Louisiana State Medical Society, focused on the need for health care reform and the health care needs of the uninsured.

LPB produced two live, town hall meetings, which were special editions of its monthly public affairs program, Louisiana Public Square, that aired on September 20 and 24 prior to the premiere of the national series. The first meeting addressed access to rural health care for the uninsured, and the second addressed electronic medical records. The latter was a critical issue to the community because of the thousands of medical records that were lost after Hurricane Katrina. Champions of Change from throughout the state were featured in both programs. Working with its coalition partners, LPB compiled information about patients’ rights and provider services throughout the state. This information was used in statewide Patient Education Seminars that were conducted by RAM coalition partners.

The Patient Education Seminars addressed patient health care needs and presented preview screenings of RAM. The first seminar, conducted by the Louisiana AARP, was held at the LPB Studios on September 19. Additional seminars took place in Alexandria (September 25), Lake Charles (September 26) and Baton Rouge (September 28). Participants received RAM promotional flyers and were asked to complete brief surveys about Louisiana medical care. The surveys were developed in partnership with Louisiana State University’s Reilly Center for Media & Public Affairs and the results will be announced on Louisiana Public Square. Results are still being compiled, but current data can be found at:

A Remaking Louisiana Medicine feature appeared in the station’s September and October program guide, Visions that is distributed to 13,000 members.


Bob Neese
Promotions Manager
(225) 767-4274

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Arlington, Virginia

According to the American Heart Association, African-American women face a greater threat of death from heart disease than women of other races. The RAM coalition, led by WETA, the PBS station in the nation’s capitol, focused on cardiovascular disease prevention and management among African American women in the Washington, D.C. area. The underlying message was to encourage women and their families to become more informed and involved in their own health care.

RAM coalition members included the Delmarva Foundation (the local QIO), the American Heart Association, the Washington Hospital Center, the YMCA of the National Capital area and local churches, among others. Members provided consumer prevention and awareness resources for the outreach effort.

WETA and the Unity Health medical staff began their project by conducting a focus group of African American women living Anacostia, a low-income housing area in the District of Columbia. The results framed the issues related to this target audience and provided guidance for the outreach efforts by placing a special emphasis on community and faith-based, family-oriented events.
In September 2006, leading up to the broadcast of the series in October, WETA partnered with the YMCA in conducting two Anacostia family health fairs that focused on treatment and prevention of heart disease. Entitled Remaking the District’s Medicine, the health fairs were promoted heavily on WETA’s FM station and its Web site. More than nine hundred families attended these events.

In October, the RAM coalition also launched a month-long series of health and wellness workshops, entitled, Commit to be Fit in Spirit, Mind and Body. WETA, coalition members and other community groups promoted these events.

In addition, WETA hosted a screening event around the series’ third program, The Stealth Epidemic. A heart specialist from the Washington Hospital Center led the follow-up discussion on the prevention of heart disease. WETA and the RAM coalition also conducted two other educational forums in Anacostia, working in collaboration with the United Planning Organization (UPO), a community action agency.


Ferne C. Barrow
Sr. Director, Outreach & Education
(703) 998-2420

Deneen Richmond
Executive Director
Delmarva Foundation
(202) 496-6541

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Vermillion, South Dakota

South Dakota Public Television (SDPTV) is leading a statewide effort to address health care access for its underserved and rural populations. Their RAM Coalition, Power to the Patient, includes the South Dakota Foundation for Medical Care, the state QIO, the South Dakota Department of Health, the South Dakota Nurses Association, the South Dakota Medical Association, and a number of other health care organizations. The coalition was instrumental in developing a bilingual brochure, Power to the Patients: It’s Your Health…You Call the Shots, which contains useful consumer tools and resources.

On September 27, the station hosted a premiere screening of Silent Killer at South Dakota State University. This was followed by a panel discussion featuring several RAM coalition members. Approximately 50 physicians attended the event. Five other RAM screening events took place around the state including one at the South Dakota Human Services Center. More than 1,800 people attended. Everyone received the “Power to the Patient” brochures and promotional flyers about the national series.

SDPTV’s weekend health care series, On Call, aired two special primetime editions in October featuring local Champions of Change. The first addressed the cost of medical care and the second encouraged patients to become better-informed and stronger advocates for their own health care.

The October issue of SDPB Magazine featured the series, the local programs and the work of the RAM coalition. The station developed a special RAM section on its Web site. It featured the Power to the Patients brochure, local Champions of Change and links to community health agencies.

Throughout the year coalition members promoted RAM at health care fairs and statewide providers conferences, including the South Dakota State Medical Association and South Dakota Nurses Association Conferences.


Sherri Rodgers
Director of Education and Outreach
South Dakota Public Broadcasting
(605) 677-6454


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Lincoln, Nebraska

Nebraska Educational Telecommunications (NET) and CIMRO-Nebraska, the state QIO, created a statewide RAM coalition that focused on issues facing minority and immigrant populations. They included a focus on medical errors and access to health care. Coalition members include the AARP, the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, the Nebraska Division of Aging, the Nebraska Association of Home Health, Office of Minority Health and Community Health Agencies, among others.

NET produced Remaking Nebraska Medicine: A Live Call-in featuring a number of local Champions of Change. The one-hour live program, which aired October 25, dealt with patient safety, new ways to distribute medication, and how alternative medicine and traditional medical practices can be complimentary efforts in improving an individual’s health care. The program was streamed on the RAM area of the NET Web site at:

NET Public Radio’s Morning Edition aired three local news features from October 23 through October 25. The programs addressed such issues as: patient empowerment; how community health centers provide services for minority and immigrant populations; and a discussion of rural health care needs.

The RAM coalition made presentations at statewide conferences including the Nebraska Health Care Association, the Nebraska Association of Home and Community Health Agencies, and the Nebraska Rural Health Association. The coalition also developed a consumer brochure that was distributed at these meetings as well as at rural health facilities, in community health organizations and pharmacies.

CIMRO’s Web served as the ‘nerve center’ for the campaign. Coalition partners also placed RAM-related information on their respective Web sites and newsletters. Articles appeared in the Nebraska Hospice and Palliative Care Partnership, the VOICE, a newsletter publication for older Nebraskans and the Senior Health Insurance Information Program, among others.


Marthaellen Florence
Producer/Outreach Coordinator
Lincoln, Nebraska
Phone: 402-472-9333 x220

Keri McDermott
Communications Director
(402) 476-1399


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Little Rock, Arkansas

Arkansas ranks high in the U.S. in mortality rates due to such chronic illnesses as heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes and obesity. An Obesity Leadership Summit, hosted by Arkansas Educational Television Network (AETN), served as the catalyst for the RAM campaign. Coalition partners include AETN, the Arkansas Foundation for Medical Care (AFMC), the state QIO; the Arkansas Center for Health Improvement; and the Arkansas Hospital Association, and a number of other hospitals and health clinics throughout the state.

Coalition partners helped select local Champions of Change. AETN produced a 30-minute program Remaking Arkansas Medicine that featured several of the local Champions of Change, who discussed patient safety, medical and medication errors and effective management of chronic diseases with an emphasis on diabetes and heart disease. The panel discussion aired six times throughout October in conjunction with the national series. It is archived on

The AETN/RAM website featured ten statewide Champions of Change, including Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, who is a national leader in the war against obesity. The site included an Arkansas health resources guide, and links to RAM coalition partners and their consumer resources and series press materials.

AETN also produced a ‘chronic care’ educational traveling exhibit that promoted RAM and featured the work of the Arkansas Champions of Change. The exhibit was presented at numerous health-related conferences throughout the state. Coalition members developed materials for the exhibit and featured these consumer friendly tips as well as on their respective Web sites.


Dan Koops
Outreach Producer
Arkansas Educational Television Network
(501) 682-4131

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Research Triangle Park, North Carolina

The University of North Carolina Public Television (UNC-TV)
built upon a three-year health initiative, HealthWise, which addresses health literacy and chronic disease management. RAM coalition members include the Carolinas Center for Medical Excellence, the statewide QIO, and the Governor’s Emerging Issues Task Force. This University of North Carolina health initiative combines the resources of the sixteen constituent campuses of the University of North Carolina, the North Carolina Health and Wellness Trust Fund Commission and the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Services, among others.

In September 2006, UNC-TV featured ten statewide Champions of Change on UNC’s TV’s weekly health care series Focus on Health. The program was rebroadcast in October during the airing of the national series. During September and October, the station also aired several short Newsmakers featuring Champions of Change discussing related quality health care issues.

Coalition members helped to select Champions of Change who appeared on UNC programs, and also featured them in their respective magazines, newsletters and on organizational Web sites. UNC-TV and coalition members also conducted health summit/training workshops focusing on chronic disease management. These workshops also included a clip from RAM that addressed this issue. In addition, there was a RAM presentation to the North Carolina Health Information and Communication Alliance in September.

UNC-TV distributed a RAM promotional flyer, produced by the station, at a booth at the North Carolina Mountain State Fair. It was translated into Spanish and also handed out at the “Fiesta del Pueblo”, North Carolina’s largest Latino festival held at the NC State Fairgrounds.


Mary Cay Corr
Diversity Coordinator
(919) 549-7164



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Trenton, New Jersey 

New Jersey is experiencing a serious statewide nursing shortage. Based on research from the New Jersey Collaborating Center for Nursing at Rutgers University, there will be a projected 43 percent reduction in the workforce by 2020. To address the critical issue, New Jersey Network (NJN) and members of the RAM Community Partners Coalition, including the Department of Nursing at William Paterson University, The Campaign for Nursing’s Future at Johnson & Johnson and the New Jersey Statehouse, mounted a statewide campaign to address this critical issue.

NJN produced Remaking American Nursing, a one-hour videotaped panel discussion that explored the nursing shortage, the factors that contribute to it, as well as how the shortage affects patient care, and how it is being addressed in New Jersey. The panel included nursing deans from Rutgers University College of Nursing for both the New Brunswick and Newark campuses, and the Chair of the Department of Nursing at William Paterson University, among others. The program aired three times, October 18, 22 and November 4, in conjunction with the national series.

In addition, RAM coalition members hosted several RAM screenings in October and in November. Cooper University Medical Center broadcast the NJN special and placed RAM clips from the series on its Intranet system, which is seen by more than 5,000 providers. NJN also recorded the National Symposium and distributed DVDs to Coalition partners.

Another screening event took place at the New Jersey State House in November, thanks to generous support of The Campaign for Nursing’s Future, funded by Johnson & Johnson. The event screened clips from the national series and Remaking American Nursing.


Elizabeth Christopherson, CEO
New Jersey Network
(609) 777-5000


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Des Moines, Iowa

Iowa Public Television (IPTV); the Iowa Foundation for Medical Care (IFMC), the statewide QIO; and the Iowa Hospitals System focused on patient- and family-centered care and patient safety. IPTV and IFMC promoted RAM at a September 2006 statewide gubernatorial forum on health care. Dan Miller, IPTV Executive Director, attended the event and encouraged the audience to attend a screening event that would be held in October.

On October 26, the Iowa Methodist Hospital hosted a screening event surrounding Program Four in the RAM series, Hand in Hand. It was preceded by a moderated discussion on senior issues for health care providers and organizations. IPTV and IFMC developed RAM posters and tune-in cards that were distributed to 450 nursing homes, 170 home health agencies, 116 hospitals and over 200 physicians.


Mary Bracken
Outreach and Communications Coordinator
Iowa Public Television/IPTV
(515) 242-3124

Peter Speikers
Communications Manager
Iowa Foundation for Medical Care
(515) 223-2178

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Washington, D.C.

WHUT and its RAM coalition focused on the issues of quality health care and health care access in the Washington, D.C. area. Coalition members include the Delmarva Foundation, the local QIO; Howard University Hospital; the American Heart Association, the Congressional Black Caucus and 18 other health care organizations, including the Institute for Family Centered Care and the National Business Coalition on Health. The campaign was based on a report by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) on regional health care disparities in the nation’s capital.

WHUT produced two programs that aired in October 2006. Caring for Your Health explored chronic disease management and preventive care in diabetes, hypertension and asthma. Quality Care for All examined regional disparities in health care and illustrated ways in which individuals and organizations are creating positive change in acute and long-term care facilities. The station also hosted two Community Forums in September focusing on the issues addressed in the programs. RAM coalition members provided speakers and selected experts featured throughout the campaign. Coalition members also promoted RAM in several area health fairs.

WHUT recorded the National Symposium and plans to continue its outreach efforts with the RAM coalition members during Winter/Spring 2007.


Jennifer Lawson
General Manager
Howard University Television/WHUT
(202) 806-3010

Deneen Richmond
Executive Director
Delmarva Foundation
(202) 496-6541


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Spokane, Washington  

For the RAM campaign, KSPS-TV, the local PBS station, partnered with the Inland Northwest Health Services Initiative, and created the Community Health Education Resources (CHER) and included statewide providers and health organizations. In addition to CHER, the RAM coalition included the AARP, the Washington State Hospital Association and Group Health Northwest, among others. Their goal was to address rural health care issues in Washington State.

Partners selected six statewide Champions of Change. In October 2006, they were featured in two one-hour editions of the KSPS ongoing series, Health Matters: Television for Life “Rural Medicine.” The programs addressed telemedicine, telehealth medical education training, access to health care for migrant workers and the need for community volunteers. The programs were also streamed on the station’s Web site. The programs are also be used as training tools for new health educators and providers in rural communities including intercollegiate Center for Nursing Education, the Washington State University pharmaceutical program, and area hospitals.

KSPS also produced a series of spots featuring the local Champions, which ran in conjunction with the national series.


Kerry Faggiano
Manager Corporate Marketing & Outreach
(509) 354-7748

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Owings Mills, Maryland  

The Maryland RAM coalition, led by Maryland Public Television (MPT), focused on patient safety and medical errors, with a special emphasis on senior care. Members included the Delmarva Foundation, the statewide QIO, the Maryland AARP, the American Heart Association, the Maryland Hospital Association, Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, the Maryland Department of Aging, Voices for Quality Health Care and other state provider and health organizations. MPT based its campaign activities on a 2005 Health Leadership Summit on Senior Health Care.

In October 2006, MPT broadcast a special edition of its statewide public affairs program, Public Square, featuring several local Champions of Change. In conjunction with the national premiere of RAM, MPT and its partners hosted several screenings and discussion events at nursing homes and hospitals throughout the Baltimore area.

RAM coalition partners also participated in a live screening of the National Symposium in MPT studios, and they promoted the series in their publications, newsletters and on their respective Web sites. Coalition members also developed a “healthy heart checklist” that was distributed at events and posted on partner Web sites.


Faith Michel
Director of Outreach
Maryland Public Television
(410) 581-4031

Deneen Richmond
Executive Director
Delmarva Foundation
(202) 496-6541



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Quality Improvement Organizations (QIOs)

A number of QIOs played a critical role in the creation of RAM Coalitions. They helped define quality issues in their respective communities, created consumer tools and resources, provided financial support and produced television programming. In fact, several QIOs served as coalition leaders.

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Phoenix, Arizona

The Health Services Advisory Group (HSAG), the Arizona state QIO, working with KAET, the local PBS station, formed a statewide RAM coalition that included providers and state health organizations. Their focus was to help improve the quality of heath care for the Hispanic community.

KAET produced a special edition of Doctor’s Day, a local health care series that aired in October 2006 around the series. The program featured statewide Champions of Change discussing issues of medical errors and patient safety as it affects the Hispanic population. The Champions were also featured on Hispanic radio stations and in local newspapers.


Barbara Warren
Director, Health Communications
Health Services Advisory Group
Phoenix, AZ 85020-3983
(602) 665-6113

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Reno, Nevada

HealthInsight, the Nevada QIO, and KNPB, led a local campaign that addressed health care access for the underserved and uninsured. The campaign was built on the station’s current health care initiative, In Pursuit of Health, which targets the Hispanic and Latino communities, which comprise approximately 20 percent of Reno’s population.

Remaking Nevada Medicine, a live call-in program produced by KNPB, aired in October 2006, in conjunction with the national series. Providers and other health care groups participated in the special. In September and October, the station hosted a series of community screenings and discussion groups focusing on chronic disease management, patient safety and empowerment.


Sherri Dangberg
Director of Community Outreach
(775) 784-4555

Kristin Boucher
Communications Coordinator
HealthInsight Nevada
(702) 385-9333

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Albuquerque, New Mexico

The New Mexico Medical Review Association (NMMRA), the statewide QIO, led a RAM coalition initiative entitled New Mexico Health Care Takes On Diabetes that focused on diabetes prevention and management in the Hispanic community. The RAM coalition included the American Diabetes Association, providers and state health organizations.

NMMRA worked with two PBS stations in the state. KRWG/Las Cruces produced a 30-minute documentary on the importance of nutrition in diabetes management that was rebroadcast in October 2006. In November, KNME in Albuquerque hosted a live town hall meeting that examined diabetes prevention and management. Local Champions of Change discussed this issue, particularly as it affected the Hispanic community. KNME also produced a series of television spots on diabetes management, the importance of telemedicine and related senior health issues.

Coalition members helped select the Champions of Change, promoted the series, and produced a health resource guide for consumers that featured pioneering health care programs.


Jennifer Trotter
Communications Manager
New Mexico Medical Review Association
(505) 998-9744


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Birmingham, Alabama 

Diabetic eye disease is the number one cause of blindness in the U.S., and Alabama has one of the highest rates of diabetes in the nation. Patients with diabetes rank in the lowest percentile for having a dilated eye exam within the past three years. A statewide RAM coalition, led by the Alabama Quality Assurance Foundation (AQAF), the statewide QIO, addressed this issue and other health disparities among diverse audiences.

Three local Champions of Change were featured in a 30-minute documentary, Remaking Alabama Medicine that was a joint production of AQAF and the Center for Public Television at the University of Alabama. Coalition members conducted screenings and discussion events around the series, and promoted RAM and the local program in their newspapers, on Web sites and through internal publications.


Michael Jones
Director of Communications
Alabama Quality Assurance Foundation
(205) 970-1600



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Denver, Colorado

Rocky Mountain PBS
was one of the RAM Incentive grantees. Initially, the PBS station intended to base its RAM campaign on Healthy Impact! a coalition that addressed quality issues, specifically health disparities for the underserved. However, due to staffing problems within the public television station, Rocky Mountain PBS was unable to continue working on the campaign. The Colorado Foundation for Medical Care, the state QIO, led the RAM coalition partners, which included the Anti-Defamation League, the Littleton Adventist Hospital, Colorado Medical Society, Regis University and the Colorado Hospital Association. RAM coalition members recruited health care professionals from minority communities and provided research regarding health disparities and language interpretation services for patients with limited English proficiency.


Josefina P. Tuason
Director of Education Services
Rocky Mountain PBS
Denver, CO 80204
(303) 620-5686

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