Student Corner: Joshua Liao and Revathi Jyothindran

December 1, 2010

Joshua Liao
Joshua Liao
  • 3rd year medical students
  • 2010-2011 Houston-Galveston Schweitzer Fellows

Liao and Jyothindran have been selected by the Albert Schweitzer Fellowship as 2010-2011 Houston-Galveston Fellows. Along with about 200 other Schweitzer Fellows across the country, they will work on a service project that addresses the unmet health needs of underserved individuals and communities.

Liao and Jyothindran's project involves working with the Harris County Hospital District and Ben Taub General Hospital's Emergency Center to help improve the follow-up or "linkage" rates of newly diagnosed HIV patients at Ben Taub's Emergency Center. Currently, less than 50 percent of the emergency center's newly diagnosed HIV patients link to care at various HIV clinics throughout the county.

Revathi Jyothindran
Revathi Jyothindran

Through their project, the students hope to improve the linkage rate by connecting individuals to the care they need through direct patient contact, publishing stories about the barriers to linkage to provide information for future patients and health care providers and methodically studying the problem in the continuity care process to improve the process for the future.

"Spending time and energy to improve the system for HIV linkage will not only improve the quality of our patients' lives, but also teach us how to more effectively use resources and address the many other important issues in HIV care," said Jyothindran.

"We hope our project provides the community enduring value by laying the initial groundwork that will hopefully improve the quality of life and give Ben Taub and the community clinics more insight into how to conduct future implementation and projects. We want more patients to link to continuity care and fully realize the potential that medicine offers for HIV treatment," said Liao.