Lamarque Polvado is on a mission to change the way healthcare services are delivered to families after the diagnosis of a chronic illness. Doing that means turning the U.S. health care industry upside down. The goal is to replace the hard-to-navigate maze of resources and referrals with a simple, fast system that puts patients and their families in control of the health care choices they face by removing the communications and information barriers that make it hard for families to identify the resources they need.
Before his own life was changed when his daughter was diagnosed with autism, Polvado was a young marketing executive who was already an executive vice president at the age of 25. The communications, leadership, and management skills he honed in the business world are helping him reshape the healthcare delivery system.
He started his mini-revolution in 2008, when he founded the Connections Project, a non-profit organization that convinced for-profit and not-for-profit health care providers to change the way they communicate with patients. In January of 2013, he took the lessons he learned at The Connections Project and founded CareStarter, a technology company that developed a virtual social worker to deliver healthcare information and resources to patients in a new way.
With CareStarter, patients and their caregiver can get instant access to up to 10 appropriate resources located in or near their community. CareStarter's database includes information on therapy, medical, education, recreation, respite care and family support services, and nutrition. With more and more American families facing the prospect of providing long-term care to a child or adult with a chronic illness, Polvado's ground-breaking efforts to bring community resources together with corporate products and services are making a difference in many lives.
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