Meet a Fellow: Ivelyse Andino
August 8, 2019
Meet Ivelyse, a 2019 Roddenberry Fellow
Ivelyse Andino is an Afro-Latina health equity innovator born and raised in The Bronx and the founder and CEO of Radical Health. While she routinely trained oncologists on new drugs, she found herself unprepared when her mother was diagnosed with cancer. This forced her to directly and intimately confront the systemic healthcare disparities she knew that existed. In founding Radical Health — the first Latina-owned and operated Benefit Corp in NYC — she has sought to combine her expertise in healthcare and her passion as a community organizer.
Coming from an historically marginalized community herself, it was important for Ivelyse to initially build Radical Health by bringing together her neighbors around her kitchen table and hearing first-hand from voices — including the undocumented, women of color, elderly, young people, and LGBTQ — who are otherwise (figuratively and) literally never given a seat at the table to have a say in their own healthcare destiny.
“My brown Afro-Latina skin and Bronx zip code predetermined my health long before I was even aware. Growing up I wanted to be a doctor because that meant that I could keep those closest to me safe and could alleviate the pain my community experienced daily. My entry into health was to train oncologists on new drugs so that they, in turn, could train others. Ironically, while teaching world-renowned oncologists, my mother was diagnosed with Leukemia. I found myself in between two worlds, one with all of the resources and millions of dollars in budget and the other in a Bronx hospital struggling to make sure my mom was being taken care of and trying to help her get access to quality care without any additional support. My experience confirmed my drive to ensure that no matter the zip code, everyone deserves quality and equitable care.”
During the 2019 Fellowship
Radical Relay by Radical Health is an AI-powered “know your rights” for health app. Through the app, they use the power of lived peer to peer experience, natural language, and technology to help prepare people seeking care with questions to ask during a clinical visit to ensure equitable quality care.
In the US, women of color are 8 times more likely to die from pregnancy-related complications. Radical Relay supports women through pregnancy, postpartum, and beyond to encourage self-advocacy and understanding about what’s happening during and after clinical encounters. We combine our Radical Relay app and host in-person peer-led Restorative Health Circles to facilitate shared learning, system accountability and strengthened community through health.
Through Radical Health, Ivelyse is committed to the task of transforming healthcare by facilitating health literacy and self-advocacy, as well as forging a relationship between meaningful face-to-face conversations with cutting-edge technology.
“We believe that we can reverse the healthcare power dynamics from a top-down paternalistic approach to real community-led and developed transformation… In order to create an equitable health experience, we must know what to expect and activate our individual voices to combat systemic and implicit biases. Our technology uses Artificial Intelligence to engage users via text message – in their language – to understand what is expected to happen during a medical visit and prompting the user with questions to ask and supporting resources. We couple the online app with in-person workshops called community conversations which support peer-to-peer learning and resource sharing hyper-locally in their community.”
Ways to get involved:
Join their newsletter: www.radical-health.com
Sign up for the release of Radical Relay: www.radical-health.com/relay
Follow on social media:
Learn more about Ivelyse and Radical Health: www.radical-health.com