In this episode, Rom chats with Steve Tierney, Senior Medical Director of Quality Improvement at Southcentral Foundation’s Nuka System of Care. Here they discuss the unique and award-winning approach that Nuka takes when it comes to addressing the primary care of Alaskan Natives. Steve does a deep dive into the unique challenges faced by providing care for a population in such a spread-out region. He also does a deep dive into the ways the system has innovated and transformed rural healthcare, how they dealt with COVID-19, his pride in Nuka, and more.
Steve Tierney is Senior Medical Director of Quality Improvement for Southcentral Foundation’s Malcolm Baldrige Award-winning Nuka System of Care. Steve joined SCF in 1995 as a primary care physician. He became one of the key physicians who helped lead the transformation to a relationship-based customer-owned health care system. He also played a key role in developing the robust data mart that helps SCF’s integrated care teams interpret complex data for internal comparisons and external comparisons against HEDIS benchmarks, where the organization scored in the 90th percentile for many of its services. Steve is trained as a family physician and an acupuncturist. He received his medical degree from the Uniformed Services University in Bethesda, Maryland. He still maintains an active family medicine practice in SCF’s Anchorage Native Primary Care Center. Steve presents nationally and internationally on transforming primary care, data integration, clinical quality program design, and complementary medicine integration efforts.