Krisda Chaiyachati is the Medical Director for Penn Medicine’s FirstCall Virtual Urgent Care within the Penn Center for Connected Care. Since 2015, when FirstCall was a pilot in collaboration with Penn Medicine’s Center for Health Care innovation, Krisda has been leading the vision and growth of the program to its current state – a 24/7 on-demand virtual care service staffed by full-time nurse practitioners. FirstCall manages a range of low-acuity urgent care needs (e.g., cold symptoms, the flu, rashes, and urinary tract infections) using video and audio-based telecommunication. In addition, the program helps coordinate follow-up care within Penn Medicine when clinically indicated. FirstCall is currently offered exclusively to Penn Medicine employees with plans to expand to other markets over the coming year.
In addition to his FirstCall role, he is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and an Innovation Manager for the Accelerator Lab within the Center for Health Care Innovation. His operations work and research revolves around improving access to health care, particularly for low-income or vulnerable populations. For example, he previously studied transportation-based initiatives using Lyft to improve health care access for Medicaid patients. He is currently studying ways telemedicine can be incorporated into how Penn Medicine delivers care and evaluating the costs and quality of telemedicine based care nationally. He has published widely on effective strategies for addressing the social determinants of health, racial disparities in care, and improving access in the New England Journal of Medicine, JAMA Internal Medicine, The Conversation, and The Health Affairs Blog and has been quoted in The Washington Post and CNBC.
In addition to Krisda’s medical degree from the University of Michigan, he received his Master of Public Health from the Harvard School of Public Health as a Zuckerman Fellow at the Center for Public Leadership and Master of Science in Health Policy Research from the University of Pennsylvania. He completed his internal medicine training with Yale's Primary Care Program and continued on as a Chief Resident. Clinically, he is an internist at a primary care clinic specifically for Penn Medicine employees.