TCOM alum’s high-pressure pitch earns innovation award


Share this story:

Theme music played. The lights were bright. And Cole Zanetti, DO, (TCOM ’11) faced 100 people in the pressure-cooker that was the Harvard Medical School auditorium.

He had five minutes to pitch a proposal – then face judges’ questions – as part of the Primary Care Innovation Challenge, a contest modeled after the ABC reality show for aspiring entrepreneurs, Shark Tank.

"It was kind of scary," Dr. Zanetti said, laughing. "But also really exhilarating."

When it was over, Dr. Zanetti was awarded the American College of Physicians’ Primary Care Innovation Award for his proposal that judges’ said best "promoted the practice of high-value care." Dr. Zanetti will next share his plan, Positive Deviances as a Value-Based Approach to Patient Engagement, at the college’s annual meeting.

His proposal focused on engaging high-risk patient populations in communities that do a good job , despite the factors against them, of managing their diseases. Dr. Zanetti calls for peer-to-peer learning that teaches patients who overutilize medical resources, such as emergency rooms, to pursue better health outcomes at a reduced cost.

Dr. Zanetti, a Leadership Preventive Medicine Resident at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center at Concord Hospital, was one of six contest finalists selected out of 53 national entries. He was the only DO invited to Boston.

"That was great because a lot of the new research on innovative primary care is coming out of the field of osteopathic medicine," Dr. Zanetti said. "It was fun to share my ideas and be surrounded by so many leaders  who are rethinking primary care."

As part of the award, Dr. Zanetti also will be invited to the Family Medicine Education Consortium to develop his project.

"It was an exciting night and I am confident that this is just the beginning of spreading a message about using the positive deviance approach to help change health care, one community at a time," Dr. Zanetti said.

Share this story:

student standing by window

A sense of service and a desire to help

By Giovanny Destin, TCOM student   The challenges many of my students faced were etched on their faces when they arrived at Polytechnic High School each morning. Some were tired from working a job late in the evening to help support their families. Some showed stress from problems at h...Read more

Dec 12, 2017

Teamwork that produces better research

By Jan Jarvis   A new agreement between UNT Health Science Center and JPS Health Network is expected to open the door to new discoveries and give Tarrant County patients greater access to cutting-edge research and ultimately new treatments. This approach streamlines the process and mak...Read more

Dec 6, 2017

‘Don’t tell them that they can’t’

By Alex Branch Londyn Miner can pinpoint the moment that started her path to UNT Health Science Center. It was seven years ago in her Granbury living room, as she tearfully explained her 15-month-old son’s devastating prognosis to a physical therapist. An MRI had revealed that Orion...Read more

Dec 5, 2017

Taking aim at metastatic prostate cancer

By Jan Jarvis When prostate cancer spreads to the bone it can be challenging to treat and often results in pain, fractures and limited survival. But an approach that delivers chemotherapy directly to the cancerous bone lesions shows promise as a new treatment that reduces tumor size and re...Read more

Dec 4, 2017