“We must make public health a priority in this country, in spite of a delivery system and payment model that does not support this work. Our challenge is to design and deliver public health initiatives within the constraints of our broken healthcare delivery system.”
Lynn Barr MPH ’11, is the CEO of Caravan Health. While working at a rural hospital as Chief Information Officer, Lynn organized the National Rural Accountable Care Consortium to overcome barriers for rural health providers so they could participate in innovative payment models under healthcare reform. In 2014, Caravan Health was formed to provide turn-key services to providers interested in population health programs in Practice Transformation Networks, Medicare and Commercial Accountable Care Organizations, MACRA, and other payment models.
My “Berkeley moment” was during my internship with the California Health and Human Services, when working on the strategic plan for Health Information Technology and Exchange. Through that work I came to know the rural providers in this state, and realized some of the greatest disparities in this country were in rural areas. Sixty million Americans live in rural areas—the size of many large countries! Their healthcare system had devolved to an urgent care model, and substance abuse had become a rampant tragedy with no treatment available. Life expectancy is now declining in rural America for the first time. Solving rural disparities has become my passion.
Public health dream team
Jonas Salk, who changed the conversation on vaccinations to one of imagined harm to one of unimaginable benefit. Stef Bertozzi, who has the vision and courage to reimagine the role public health can play in the United States in the future. Steve Shortell and Elliot Fisher, who understand the power of accountable care. Moses, who had the leadership skills to take disparate tribes across the desert and part the Red Sea, which is not unlike trying to change the U.S. health care delivery system.
Theme song while at Berkeley
“I Can See Clearly Now” by Johnny Nash, 1972