Future Directions for the National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Reports

J. Committee Member and Staff Biographies

Committee Biographies

Sheila P. Burke, M.P.A., R.N. (Chair), is a faculty research fellow at the Malcolm Weiner Center for Social Policy, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, as well as a senior public policy advisor for Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz. Having received her M.P.A. from the Kennedy School in 1982, she returned in 1996 to serve as executive dean through June 2000. She was chief of staff to former Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole (1985 to 1996) and deputy staff director of the Senate Committee on Finance (1982 to 1985), having previously been a professional staff member of the committee (1979 to 1982). Ms. Burke holds a B.S. in nursing from the University of San Francisco and worked as a staff nurse in Berkeley, California. She is a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, as well as a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration and the American Academy of Nursing. Ms. Burke serves on the adjunct faculty at Georgetown University, on the board of trustees of the Kaiser Commission on the Future of Medicaid and the Uninsured, the board of directors of the Association of American Medical Colleges, the board of directors of the Bipartisan Policy Commission, and on a number of corporate boards. She previously served as a member of the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission, as a member and chair of the board of the Kaiser Family Foundation, and as a member of a number of corporate boards.

Ignatius Bau, J.D., is a program director at the The California Endowment, a private statewide health policy foundation. He focuses on issues of language access, cultural competency, health workforce diversity, reduction of health care disparities, and health information technology and currently oversees grants to national quality, health care accreditation, and health professions educational organizations, as well as to hospitals and health systems, health plans, physician organizations, community health centers, health professions educational institutions, and community-based organizations throughout California. Mr. Bau previously worked as a program manager and policy director at the Asian and Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF) and as a staff attorney at the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area. Mr. Bau and the APIAHF led community efforts that resulted in the creation of the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, and Mr. Bau was the principal author of the first report from the President's Advisory Commission on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. Mr. Bau has served on the board of directors of numerous organizations, including Funders for Lesbian and Gay Issues, the National Minority AIDS Coalition, the Northern California Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, the Asian and Pacific Islander Wellness Center, and the California Budget Project. He has served on several government committees, including the President's Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National HIV Prevention Planning Group, and the California Department of Health's Task Force on Multicultural Health. He has been a member of the Institute of Medicine's Forum on the Science of Health Care Quality Improvement and Implementation, the Joint Commission Public Advisory Group, the National Quality Forum Work Group on Minority Healthcare Quality Measurement, and several technical advisory committees for the California Health Interview Survey.

Anne C. Beal, M.D., M.P.H., is president of the Aetna Foundation. Previously, she was assistant vice president for The Commonwealth Fund's Program on Health Disparities. That program seeks to improve quality and reduce disparities in health care for low-income and racial/ethnic minority patients by promoting quality improvement innovations and addressing barriers to quality improvement adoptions that would benefit the underserved. Dr. Beal is also the chair of the New York State Minority Health Council. Prior to joining The Commonwealth Fund, Dr. Beal was a health services researcher at the Center for Child and Adolescent Health Policy at Massachusetts General Hospital. In addition, she was associate director of the Multicultural Affairs Office, an attending pediatrician within the division of General Pediatrics, and an instructor in pediatrics at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Beal's research interests include social influences on preventive health behaviors for minorities, racial disparities in health care, collection of race/ethnicity data, and quality of care. Dr. Beal serves on the advisory boards for many organizations, has been a reviewer for the Health Systems Research study section of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, and was recently appointed as co-chair of the Healthcare Disparities Technical Advisory Panel for the National Quality Forum's Ambulatory Care Measures Project.

E. Richard Brown, Ph.D., is the founder and director of the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research and a professor at the UCLA School of Public Health. He received his Ph.D. in sociology of education from the University of California, Berkeley. Dr. Brown has studied and written extensively about a broad range of issues and policies that affect the access of disadvantaged populations to health care. His recent research focuses on health insurance coverage, the lack of coverage, and the effects of public policies, managed care, and market conditions on access to health services, particularly for disadvantaged populations, ethnic minorities, and immigrants. Dr. Brown and the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research's studies of health insurance coverage, uninsurance, and eligibility for public programs have been used by California's governors, legislators, and advocates in crafting health insurance legislation and programs. Dr. Brown is the principal investigator for the California Health Interview Survey (CHIS), one of the nation's largest ongoing health surveys. CHIS uniquely provides statewide and local-level estimates for California's diverse population and covers a broad range of health issues, including health status and conditions and access to health care.

Marshall H. Chin, M.D., M.P.H., F.A.C.P., a professor of medicine at the University of Chicago, is a general internist with extensive experience improving the care of vulnerable patients with chronic disease. Dr. Chin is director of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's (RWJF's) Finding Answers: Disparities Research for Change National Program Office, a major effort to reduce racial and ethnic disparities in health care. In addition, he is associate director of Chicago's National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)-supported Diabetes Research and Training Center; associate chief and director of research in the Section of General Internal Medicine; and co-director of the John A. Hartford Foundation Center of Excellence in Geriatrics. Over the past 10 years, Dr. Chin and his partners from the MidWest Clinicians' Network consortium of community health centers have engaged in a series of studies funded by AHRQ, NIDDK, and the RWJF to improve the quality of diabetes care in health centers that serve the indigent. These multifactorial, community-based interventions include rapid quality improvement, chronic disease management, provider training in behavioral change, and patient empowerment interventions. Dr. Chin performed a national evaluation of the federal Health Resources and Services Administration Bureau of Primary Health Care's Health Disparities Collaboratives, the most comprehensive effort to improve the quality of care in health centers yet to be undertaken. He was a member of the Institute of Medicine Forum on the Science of Health Care Quality Improvement and Implementation. Currently, Dr. Chin is leading the evaluation of a Commonwealth Fund project that is implementing the patient-centered medical home in safety net clinics across five states. He is also improving diabetes care and outcomes on the South Side of Chicago through health care system and community interventions. Dr. Chin is a graduate of the University of California at San Francisco School of Medicine and completed residency and fellowship training in general internal medicine at Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School.

José J. Escarce, M.D., Ph.D., is a professor of medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and a Senior Natural Scientist at RAND. Dr. Escarce graduated from Princeton University, earned a master's degree in physics from Harvard University, obtained his medical degree and doctorate in health economics from the University of Pennsylvania, and completed his residency in internal medicine at Stanford University. Dr. Escarce has served on the National Advisory Council for Health Care Policy, Research, and Evaluation of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and he currently serves on the National Advisory Committee of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Minority Medical Faculty Development Program. He was a member of the Institute of Medicine Committee on Understanding and Eliminating Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Health Care, and the IOM Committee on Envisioning the National Health Care Quality Report. Dr. Escarce's research interests include racial and ethnic disparities in health care, access to care, provider, and patient behavior under economic incentives, technological change in medicine, and the impact of managed care on costs and quality. Away from health care, Dr. Escarce is vice president of the board of education of the public school district in Santa Monica, California, a small urban district in which more than one-third of the students are Hispanic.

Kevin Fiscella, M.D., M.P.H., is a tenured professor of family medicine and community & preventive medicine at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and associate director of the Rochester Center to Improve Communication in Health Care. Most of his research has focused on racial/ethnic and socioeconomic disparities in health and health care. He is currently directing major projects sponsored by the National Institutes of Health, the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) related to racial/ethnic disparities in health care or health. His work relates to the development and implementation of quality measures to assess health care for vulnerable populations and the use of quality improvement to address these disparities. Mr. Fiscella was a member of the Institute of Medicine committee that developed the framework for the National Healthcare Disparities Report, and he now serves on advisory groups for the American Medical Association, the RWJF, Aetna, the National Committee for Quality Assurance, the National Council on Interpretation in Health Care, and the Minority Health Institute. He has prepared commissioned reports on disparities in health care and use of quality measures for the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, the National Quality Forum, the RWJF, Physicians for Human Rights, and the Harvard Civil Rights Project.

Elliott S. Fisher, M.D., M.P.H., is professor of medicine and community and family medicine at Dartmouth Medical School and director of the Center for Health Policy Research in the newly established Dartmouth Institute for Health Care Policy and Clinical Practice. He has recently taken over leadership of the Dartmouth Atlas of Health Care, which provides national and regional information on the performance of the U.S. health care system. He is a member of the Institute of Medicine (IOM), served on the IOM committee that recently released reports on performance measurement and pay for performance, and is currently co-chair of the National Quality Forum committee developing recommendations for a national framework for measuring and improving the efficiency of U.S. health care.

Dawn M. Fitzgerald, M.Sc., M.B.A., is chief executive officer of QSource. She began her tenure at QSource in 1999 as a consultant and held various leadership positions, including vice president/director of the Underserved Quality Improvement Organization Support Center before her appointment as chief operating officer in 2001. She has served on several National Quality Forum panels, the most recent being the 2006 Technical Advisory Panel on Ambulatory Measures of Healthcare Disparities. Ms. Fitzgerald has served on the America for Healthcare Quality Association's e-Health Advisory Panel and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services' QIO Evaluation Committee. Ms. FitzGerald has coauthored more than a dozen articles on quality improvement efforts and analysis of Medicare data and received numerous awards recognizing her leadership capacities. She holds an M.B.A. from the University of Memphis and an M.S. in developmental psychology and gerontology from the University of Florida.

Foster Gesten, M.D., is medical director for the Office of Health Insurance Programs in the New York State Department of Health. Dr. Gesten provides clinical direction and leadership for a team of professionals engaged in quality oversight, performance measurement, and clinical improvement in New York. Major initiatives include the development of statewide public reporting systems for commercial, Medicaid, and child health managed care programs on quality, access, and satisfaction. Dr. Gesten is a co-investigator for a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention grant addressing asthma from a public health perspective, and he developed a state-initiated program directed at improving the delivery of prevention services to adolescents. He serves on the Managed Care Technical Advisory Group for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and he is a member of the National CAHPS Benchmarking Database Advisory Group, the Committee on Performance Measurement at the National Committee for Quality Assurance, and the Ambulatory Care Performance Measures Steering Committee at the National Quality Forum. Dr. Gesten was trained in general internal medicine at Brown University.

Brent C. James, M.D., is the vice president for medical research and the executive director of the Institute for Healthcare Delivery Research, Intermountain Healthcare. Dr. James is known internationally for his work in clinical quality improvement, patient safety, and the infrastructure that underlies successful improvement efforts, such as culture change, data systems, payment methods, and management roles. He is a member of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) and participated in many of that organization's seminal works on quality and patient safety. He holds faculty appointments at the University of Utah School of Medicine (Family Medicine and Medical Informatics), Harvard School of Public Health (Health Policy and Management), Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, and the University of Sydney, Australia, School of Public Health. Intermountain Healthcare is an integrated system of 23 hospitals, almost 100 clinics, a 450+ member physician group, and an HMO/PPO insurance plan jointly responsible for more than 450,000 covered lives serving patients in largely rural states (Utah, Idaho) and, at a tertiary level, seven surrounding states.

Jeffrey Kang, M.D., M.P.H., is the chief medical officer for CIGNA Corporation. CIGNA's mission is to improve the health, well-being, and security of the members it serves. Dr. Kang is responsible for clinical strategy and policy, coverage policy, quality measurement and improvement, value-based purchasing and design of CIGNA's Health Advocacy programs. Dr. Kang is an internist and geriatrician whose career began as the executive director of the Urban Medical Group, a nonprofit, private group practice specializing in the care of the frail, elderly, and disabled. From 1994 to 2002, he worked for the federal government, first as a White House Fellow and then as the chief medical officer and director of the Office of Clinical Standards for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (formerly the Health Care Financing Administration). In addition to working at CIGNA, Dr. Kang is currently the president of the eHealth Initiative, based in Washington, DC.

David R. Nerenz, Ph.D., is the director of the Center for Health Services Research at the Henry Ford Health System, Detroit, Michigan. He is also the director of outcomes research at Henry Ford's Neuroscience Institute. Dr. Nerenz received his doctorate in social psychology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1979. From 1980 to 1984, he did research at the Wisconsin Clinical Cancer Center and was coordinator of health services research for the William S. Middleton Veterans Hospital in Madison. From 1984 to 1986, he was director of the Veterans Administration's Great Lakes Regional Health Services Research and Development Service Field Program in Ann Arbor. He has been at the Henry Ford Health System since 1987. For the past 10 years, Dr. Nerenz has led a series of demonstration projects on health plans' collection and use of data on race and ethnicity to eliminate disparities in quality of care. His areas of expertise include performance measures for health care organizations; racial/ethnic disparities in quality of care; and use of patient-reported outcomes data to assess and compare health care providers.

Sharon-Lise T. Normand, Ph.D., is professor of health care policy (biostatistics) in the Department of Health Care Policy at Harvard Medical School and in the Department of Biostatistics at the Harvard School of Public Health. Her research focuses on the assessment of quality of patient care through causal inference, provider profiling, metaanalysis, and latent variable modeling. Dr. Normand has developed analytic approaches for comparing providers using outcomes and process-based measures, and for determining the appropriate unit of analysis (e.g., hospitallevel or physician-level analysis). She is the director of Mass-DAC, the data-coordinating center responsible for collecting, analyzing, and reporting on the quality of care for adults discharged following a cardiac procedure from all nonfederal hospitals in Massachusetts. Dr. Normand earned her A.B. and M.S. degrees in statistics from the University of Western Ontario and her Ph.D. in biostatistics from the University of Toronto. She is a fellow of the American Statistical Association, the American College of Cardiology, and the American Heart Association.

Christopher Queram, M.A., is president and chief executive officer of the Wisconsin Collaborative for Healthcare Quality. As president and CEO, he is responsible for the development of the strategic direction and a sustainable business model for a multi-stakeholder consortium of organizations dedicated to improving the quality and cost-effectiveness of health care for the people of Wisconsin. The Wisconsin Collaborative's core value proposition emphasizes the development and public reporting of comparative performance information and the design and sponsorship of quality improvement initiatives for its member organizations. Previously, he was CEO at the Employer Health Care Alliance Cooperative (The Alliance), where he was responsible for establishing the strategic direction and operating plan for a health care purchasing cooperative owned by more than 160 member companies. Major functions of The Alliance include provider contracting, data management and reporting, consumer education, and employer/provider quality initiatives. Mr. Queram is also responsible for fulfilling the public policy and community education mission of the Wisconsin Collaborative for Healthcare Quality.

Sarah Hudson Scholle, M.P.H., Dr.P.H., is responsible for overseeing the development and implementation of the research agenda of the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA). Dr. Scholle is a health services researcher and previously served as associate professor of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh. Her research interests focus on assessing quality of health care, addressing cultural competence and disparities, and evaluating practice systems and patient experiences of care. At NCQA, Dr. Scholle has led a variety of projects to understand disparities in health care and opportunities for addressing cultural competence and disparities in quality measurement and the evaluation of health care organizations. Her projects have developed standards for health plans related to culturally and linguistically appropriate services (CLAS), identified innovative efforts by health plans to address health care disparities and CLAS, provided technical support and financial assistance to small practices undertaking quality improvement efforts related to CLAS/disparities, and examined the feasibility of reporting Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set cardiovascular disease measures stratified by gender and race/ethnicity. Dr. Scholle has led NCQA's efforts to adapt programs for assessing the patient-centered medical home and is leading performance measurement efforts in child health and depression. At the University of Pittsburgh, she helped initiate the Magee-RAND Women's Health Initiative, developed a tool for assessing women's satisfaction with primary care, and helped develop interventions in care management for postpartum depression and a motivational interviewing program for domestic violence victims. Dr. Scholle has published papers on a variety of topics in leading health care journals and serves as chair of a scientific merit review committee for the Veterans Administration Health Services Research and Development Program. Dr. Scholle received her bachelor's degree in history and master's degree in public health from Yale University and her doctorate in public health from the Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health.

Paul M. Schyve, M.D., is the senior vice president of The Joint Commission and is knowledgeable of requirements for language access in hospitals and disability issues. Prior to joining The Joint Commission in 1986, Dr. Schyve was the clinical director of the Illinois Department of Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities. Dr. Schyve received his undergraduate degree (Phi Beta Kappa) and his medical education and residency in psychiatry at the University of Rochester. He has held a variety of professional and academic appointments in the areas of mental health and hospital administration, including director of the Illinois State Psychiatric Institute and clinical associate professor of psychiatry at the University of Chicago. Dr. Schyve is certified in psychiatry by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology and is a distinguished life fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. A founding advisor of Consumers Advancing Patient Safety, the chair of the Ethical Force Oversight Body of the Institute of Ethics at the American Medical Association, a former trustee of the United States Pharmacopeial Convention, and a former member of the board of directors of the National Alliance for Health Information Technology, he has published in the areas of psychiatric treatment and research, psychopharmacology, quality assurance, continuous quality improvement, health care accreditation, patient safety, the role of language, cultural competence, and health literacy in communication, and health care ethics.

Staff Biographies

Michelle Bruno, M.P.P., was a senior program associate of the Institute of Medicine's Board on Health Care Services until February 2010. She joined the IOM in 2007 and contributed to a range of significant reports, including Resident Duty Hours: Enhancing Sleep, Supervision, and Safety; Retooling for an Aging America: Building the Health Care Workforce; and Opportunities for Coordination and Clarity to Advance the National Health Information Agenda. Prior to joining the IOM, Ms. Bruno completed her master's degree in public policy with a dual concentration in health policy and public and nonprofit management at the Georgetown Public Policy Institute.

Cassandra L. Cacace, B.S., is a research assistant for the Board on Health Care Services, who has assisted on a variety of projects, including the Subcommittee on Standardized Collection of Race/Ethnicity Data for Healthcare Quality Improvement, the Committee on Planning a Health Care Continuing Education Institute, the Committee on Optimizing Graduate Medical Trainee (Resident) Hours and Work Schedule to Improve Patient Safety, and the Forum on the Science of Health Care Quality Improvement and Implementation. She graduated cum laude from the George Washington University in May 2006 and is currently pursuing her master's degree in public health with a concentration in health policy from the George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services.

Roger C. Herdman, M.D., is the director of the Institute of Medicine's Board on Health Care Services. He was born in Boston and graduated from Phillips Exeter Academy, 1951; Yale University, magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, B.S., 1955; Yale University School of Medicine, MD, 1958. He interned at the University of Minnesota and served as a medical officer in the U.S. Navy, 1959-1961; thereafter, he completed a residency in pediatrics and continued with a medical fellowship in immunology/nephrology at Minnesota. Between 1966 and 1979, Dr. Herdman held the positions of assistant professor and professor of pediatrics at the University of Minnesota and the Albany Medical College. In 1969, he was appointed director of the New York State Kidney Disease Institute in Albany. From 1969 to 1977, he served as deputy commissioner of the New York State Department of Health, with responsibility for research, departmental health care facilities, and the Medicaid program. In 1977, he was named New York State's director of public health. From 1979 until joining the U.S. Congress's Office of Technology Assessment (OTA) in 1983, he was a vice president of the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City. In 1983, Dr. Herdman was named assistant director of OTA; he was subsequently named acting director and director of OTA from January 1993 to February 1996. After the closure of OTA, Dr. Herdman joined the National Academy of Sciences' Institute of Medicine as a senior scholar, and subsequently served as director of the National Cancer Policy Board (from 2000 to 2005) and the National Cancer Policy Forum (from 2005 to 2007). Dr. Herdman was appointed director of the Board on Health Care Services in October 2007.

Bernadette McFadden, M.Sc., joined the Institute of Medicine as a research associate in November 2008. Since that time, she has staffed projects on the redesign of continuing education for health professionals; the qualification of biomarkers in chronic disease; and the standardization of race, ethnicity, and language data. She currently works with the Committee on Future Directions for the National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Reports. Prior to joining the IOM, she completed a master's degree in social research at Trinity College Dublin and worked for Dublin City Council's Homeless Agency, where she edited a volume of essays on homelessness in Ireland and authored a report on how the city's management of public space impacts homeless persons. She graduated summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, from Dickinson College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. While in central Pennsylvania, she conducted research on local effects of implementing Medicare Part D and the state's long-term care policies, interned with the Executive Policy Office of the Pennsylvania Department of Health, and served as a board member on the United Way of Cumberland County. Her interests in health policy developed while serving as an AmeriCorps teacher in an Atlanta public school.

Cheryl Ulmer, M.S., is a senior program officer for the Board on Health Care Services in the Institute of Medicine. She served as co-director of the Resident Duty Hours: Sleep, Supervision and Safety project and director of Race, Ethnicity, and Language Data for Health Care Quality Improvement. Before joining the IOM, she worked as an independent consultant on a wide-ranging set of health care issues, but with a primary focus on the delivery and content of health care services, disparities in health status and quality of care across populations, and options for financing and insurance. Previous consulting work for the IOM included surveying chief executive officers of state Quality Improvement Organizations and providing writing/editing services on the Pathways to Quality and the Consequences of Uninsurance series. Other illustrative independent consulting projects include: Serving Patients with Limited English Proficiency: Results of a Community Health Center Survey (National Association of Community Health Centers [NACHC], The California Endowment and National Health Law Program, 2007); Giving Back and Moving Forward: Finding a Future Through Service in Community Health Corps (NACHC, 2006); Changing Lives through Service to Medically Underserved Communities (NACHC and Corporation for National Service, 2005); Assessing Primary Care Content: Four Conditions Common in Community Health Center Practice—Hypertension, Diabetes, Otitis, Asthma (Health Resources and Services Administration [HRSA], 2000); The Role of Behavioral Factors in Achieving National Health Outcomes (Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, 2004); Schools as Health Access Points for Underserved Children and Adolescents: Survey of School-based Programs (NACHC, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and HRSA, 2003). Ms. Ulmer has served as a senior associate with MDS Associates, a health care consulting firm with public and private sector clients, as well as in various positions within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, including the Office of the Secretary, Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation/Health; the Health Services Administration; the Health Resources Administration; Medicaid Services; and the National Institutes of Health. She has a master's degree from Georgetown University and a B.S. from Mary Washington College of the University of Virginia.

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Page last reviewed October 2014
Page originally created September 2012
Internet Citation: J. Committee Member and Staff Biographies. Content last reviewed October 2014. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. http://www.ahrq.gov/research/findings/final-reports/iomqrdrreport/futureqrdrapj.html