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LaCoe appointed vice president of virtual care for Penn State Health

In the wake of COVID-19, appointments through Penn State Health OnDemand have increased by 7,500% over the previous year. With its convenience and high patient ratings — an average 4.85 out of 5 for the OnDemand app — virtual care across Penn State Health is an increasingly important focus for the health system. Chris LaCoe, who led the growth and development of telehealth at Hershey Medical Center in recent years, has taken on a broader, more focused role overseeing virtual care across the system, effective this week.

As vice president of virtual care for Penn State Health, LaCoe will develop the strategy and direction of virtual care offerings across the health system, under the leadership of Tom Stoessel, chief strategy officer, and in close coordination with system leaders, physicians, and operational and technical teams.

“The expansion of virtual health is a win for consumers and our health system,” said Steve Massini, CEO of Penn State Health. “For consumers, it’s convenient, provides easier access to our care and is often less expensive than a face-to-face visit. For our health system, virtual care helps us reach new patients, including those in rural communities who might not otherwise have access to our care. It helps us to expand our referral network for our specialists, and improves patient satisfaction.”

LaCoe has served in various roles within Penn State Health for 25 years. Most recently, he was vice president of operations at Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, where he was responsible for telehealth in addition to other service lines. He oversaw the launch and growth of the Penn State Health OnDemand app for virtual care. During the pandemic, he guided the adaption of technology and training of providers to offer virtual care experiences across the health system.

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