Seattle Investigator Biographies - Seattle-Denver Center of Innovation (COIN)
Attention A T users. To access the menus on this page please perform the following steps. 1. Please switch auto forms mode to off. 2. Hit enter to expand a main menu option (Health, Benefits, etc). 3. To enter and activate the submenu links, hit the down arrow. You will now be able to tab or arrow up or down through the submenu options to access/activate the submenu links.

Seattle-Denver Center of Innovation (COIN)

Menu
Menu

Quick Links

Veterans Crisis Line Badge
My healthevet badge
EBenefits Badge
 

Seattle Investigator Biographies

Click here for a complete list of Seattle-Denver investigators.


Publications 
University Web Profile
David Au, MD, MS
I am a pulmonary and critical care physician and have had a long interest in improving delivery of care to patients with COPD and lung cancer. I have particular interest in improving the reach of specialty care medicine, especially at the population level. My program has a strong emphasis in facilitating delivery and quality of care in the outpatient setting and in the primary care environment where quality of lung disease care is consistently poor. I have led a number of initiative to improve access and quality of healthcare delivery in both research and operational projects. My search program has included diverse areas including focusing on comparative effectiveness, being a founding member of the CONCERT-CER network that led efforts at developing national CER priorities for COPD. More recently, we have focused on operationally relevant ... and pragmatic clinical trials targeting high impact conditions including overuse of medical services, COPD and obesity. Having roots as part of the Office of Specialty Care Evaluation Center and with a number of colleagues from Seattle, Denver and Cleveland, we have established the VA collaborative evaluation (VACE) center that seeks to provide our organizational partner with strategic information about VA healthcare delivery.

Operationally, I established the Pulmonary/Sleep pecialty Care Access Network, Extension of Community Healthcare Outcomes for VISN20 (now VA ECHO) and worked within VA Office of Veteran Access to Care (OVAC) to help conceptualize access and implement a new referral management process. I have been fortunate to be engaged with numerous organizations including Chairing the FDA Pulmonary, Allergy Drugs Advisory Committee, NCQA respiratory measurement assessment panel and VA's Pulmonary Field Advisory Committee. I have been engaged with the American Thoracic Society including chairing the ATS international meeting, behavioral sciences and health services assembly, among others. I recently rotated off the ABIM pulmonary board exam writing committee. I am an active member of the UW Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine Faculty where I serve on the Steering Committee of our T32 program and am the MPI of an NHLBI K12 in implementation.
Read more

Publications
University Web Profile
Links: Twitter, LinkedIn
Lauren A. Beste, MD, MSc, FACP
Dr. Beste is an Affiliate Investigator with HSR&D. Her research interests include improving care for patients with chronic liver disease, particularly viral hepatitis, with emphasis on the role University of Washington of primary care providers. She is the Director of the Data and Analysis Group for the VA's national HIV, Hepatitis, and Related Conditions Programs Office and Associate Program Director for VISN 20's Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes (VA-ECHO) hepatology telemedicine program. Dr. Beste practices internal medicine and hepatology at the VA Puget Sound. She is an Associate Professor in the University of Washington School of Medicine, Division of General Internal Medicine. Dr. Beste received her MD from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and her MSc in Health Services at the University of Washington... She is a proud 2009 graduate of VA Puget Sound's HSR&D Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Primary Care.  Read more

Publications
University Web Profile
Lisa S. Callegari, MD, MS
Dr. Callegary is an obstetrician gynecologist and health services researcher. Her work focuses on developing and testing interventions to improve provider-patient communication, patient-centered care, and equity in reproductive health. Funded by an HSR&D Career Development Award, she developed and piloted a web-based tool to facilitate shared decision making conversations about pregnancy and contraceptive decisions and, ultimately, to support reproductive autonomy and improve reproductive health outcomes among women Veterans. She is now conducting a multicenter randomized controlled trial of the tool in VA primary care settings. She also studies echanisms of racial disparities in gynecologic outcomes in the VA to inform interventions to promote equity in VA gynecologic and surgical care. She attended Harvard University for medical school ... and the University of California, San Francisco for her residency in Obstetrics & Gynecology. After working in clinical practice for several years, she completed an MPH in epidemiology at the University of Washington and a VA postdoctoral fellowship in health services research. She is currently Associate Professor of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Adjunct Associate Professor of Health Services at the University of Washington and a Core Investigator at the VA HSR&D Seattle-Denver Center of Innovation for Veteran-Centered and Value-Driven Care.  Read more

Publications
University Web Profile
Jacob A. Doll, MD
Dr. Doll is an interventional cardiologist anad health services researcher. He is a staff cardiologist at the VA Puget Sound Health Care System and an Acting Assistant Professor at the University of Washington. His research interests include cardiac interventions and post-myocardial infarction care, with a focus on medication adherence and increasing patient involvement in decision-making. He also studies clinician assessment and feedback as a method of quality improvement. He received his MD at Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons, his residency training at the University of Chicago, and completed a general cardiology fellowship, interventional cardiology fellowship and research training at Duke University and the Duke Clinical Research Institute.

Publications
University Web Profile
Jason A. Dominitz, MD, MHS
Dr. Dominitz is an Investigator with HSR&D, the National Director of the Gastroenterology Program in the Office of Specialty Care Services for the Veterans Health Administration a staff gastroenterologist at the VA Puget Sound Health Care System. He is also a Professor in the Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Medicine, at the University of Washington. Dr. Dominitz co-chairs VA Cooperative Study #577: Colonoscopy vs. Fecal Immunochemical Test in Reducing Mortality from Colorectal Cancer (CONFIRM). His research interests include colorectal cancer screening, quality improvement and quality of care for gastrointestinal and liver diseases. Dr. Dominitz received his BA from Johns Hopkins University, his MD from the University of Maryland School of Medicine and his MHS from Duke University School of Medicine ... He is also a graduate of the Durham VA's HSR&D Fellowship Program.  Read more

Publications
University Web Profile
Lucas M Donovan, MD, MS
Dr. Donovan is a sleep specialist, pulmonologist, and health services researcher. He is a Core Investigator at the Seattle-Denver HSR&D Center of Innovation, staff physician at the VA Puget Sound, and is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of Washington. His research focuses on improving access to sleep care services in ways that maximize quality, efficiency, and Veteran experience. Dr. Donovan is currently supported by a VA HSR&D Career Development Award designed to evaluate and improve a system of simplified sleep delivery for rural Veterans. He is also principal investigator of a project evaluating the integration of  nurse led decision-making for specialty care referrals.
Publications 
University Web Profile
Vincent S. Fan, MD, MPHDr
Dr. Fan is a pulmonologist and health services researcher whose work focuses on developing interventions to help people with  chronic obstructive disease and other chronic illnesses manage their conditions at home, and to develop programs to help patients remain physically active.  He has examined self-management interventions for COPD, and studied the effect of depression and anxiety on self-care in COPD.  He has used new health care technologies and mHealth to deliver self-management education for COPD and for telemonitoring.  His current research focuses how to improve access to care for patients who develop acute exacerbations of COPD. He is also examining the effect of air pollution on development of early lung disease, as well as the contribution of air pollution to causing COPD exacerbations.... Dr. Fan is Associate Professor of Medicine and Adjunct Associate Professor of Health Services at the University of Washington. Dr. Fan received his MD form the University of Minnesota and MPH in Epidemiology from the School of Public Health at the University of Washington. Read more
Publications
University Web Profile
Laura C. Feemster, MD, MS
Dr. Feemster is a Core Investigator and Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine, Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care at the University of Washington. Her research interests include studying the effect of patient health behaviors (e.g. smoking, alcohol use, and obesity) on clinical outcomes among patients with lung disease and improving the quality of care for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. She is currently funded through a NIH K23 award that seeks to improve quality and delivery of care provided within primary care settings. Dr. Feemster received her MD from the University of Texas, Southwestern Medical School at Dallas. She received an MS from the University of Washington, School of Public Health, Department of Epidemiology.

Publications
University Web Profile
John C. Fortney, PhD
Dr. Fortney, Ph.D. is a Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the University of Washington School of Medicine, and the Director of the Division of Population Health.  He is also a Core Investigator at the HSR&D Center for Innovation for Veteran-Centered and Value-Driven Care at the VA Puget Sound Health Care System, and the Director of the VA Virtual Specialty Care QUERI Center.  For the last 25 years, Dr. Fortney's research has focused on access to care.  He has published a framework for conceptualizing access to care in the digital age that incorporates virtual care technologies. He has conducted clinical trials to test the effectiveness of virtual care technologies to facilitate the delivery of evidence-based mental health services in rural primary care clinics. He has also conducted implementation trials to test the effectiveness ... of strategies to promote the uptake of virtual care technologies by primary care patients and providers. His research has been supported by NIMH, NIAAA, PCORI, and VA HSR&D.  Read more
Publications
University Web Profile
Kristen E. Gray, PD, MS, BS
Dr. Gray is an epidemiologist and health services researcher at the HSR&D Seattle-Denver Center of Innovation and a Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Health Services at the University of Washington School of Public Health. She has two broad research interests: understanding and improving Veterans’ health behaviors, particularly physical activity and diet, and women’s reproductive health care delivery. Dr. Gray has a 5-year HSR&D Career Development Award to develop and pilot test a videoconference-delivered, partner-assisted intervention to improve weight management outcomes among men and women Veterans who are overweight or obese. She also leads an HSR&D Research to Impact for Veterans project to optimize women’s reproductive health care coordination during VA’s transition to the Cerner electronic health record ... Dr. Gray received her PhD and MS in epidemiology from the University of Washington School of Public Health and completed a post-doctoral fellowship at the Seattle-Denver Center of Innovation.  Read more

Publications
University Web Profile
Eric J. Hawkins, PhD
Dr. Hawkins is an Investigator with HSR&D and the Associate Director of the Seattle Center of Excellence in Substance Addiction Treatment and Education (CESATE), one of two national VA centers devoted to improving the quality of care and clinical outcomes of veterans with substance use conditions. He also is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the University of Washington and a licensed clinical psychologist in Washington State. His primary research interests include improving access to and evaluating pharmacotherapy and behavioral health interventions for Veterans with alcohol and/or drug misuse conditions. He received his PhD in Clinical Psychology from. Brigham Young University and a graduate of the VA Puget Sound’s HSR&D Fellowship Program.

Publications
University Web Profile
Paul L. Hebert, PhD
Dr. Hebert is a Core Investigator and economist with HSR&D and was previously Assistant Professor, Department of Health Policy, Mount Sinai School of Medicine. His research interests include racial disparities in health, chronic disease management, and comparative effectiveness analysis. He received his PhD in Health Services Research from the University of Minnesota and a BA in economics from Georgetown University.

Publications
University Web Profile
Christian D. Helfrich, PhD, MPH
Dr. Helfrich is a Core Investigator with HSR&D, Research Assistant Professor, Department of Health Services at the University of Washington School of Public Health, and Implementation Research Coordinator for the VA Ischemic Heart Disease Quality Enhancement Research Initiative, a collaboration between VA Health Services Research and Clinical Operations to speed the adoption and implementation of evidence-based practices for priority conditions among Veterans. Dr. Helfrich is also Chair of the Organizational Function Working Group, a part of the VA Patient Aligned Care Team (PACT). Demonstration Laboratory Coordinating Center, which is tasked with evaluating the implementation of a patient-centered medical home model in VA. His primary research interests are organizational change and implementation science, specifically on assessing ... organizational readiness to change in the context of evidence-based practices, and factors influencing implementation of large scale initiatives. Dr. Helfrich received his PhD in Health Policy and Management from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and his MPH from the Department of Health Services at the University of Washington School of Public Health.  Read more

Publications
University Web Profile
Katherine D. Hoerster, PhD, MPH
My work primarily focuses on reducing the disproportionate chronic disease burden facing people with PTSD and other mental health conditions. I am funded with a 5-year VA HSR&D Career Development Award to develop a behavioral weight loss program for overweight Veterans with PTSD, called MOVE!+UP. In 2020 I will launch a VA Merit (R01-level)-funded study to test MOVE!+UP in a hybrid effectiveness and implementation randomized controlled trial. I am also PI on a VA Merit pragmatic clinical trial to test a remote behavioral weight loss intervention among 500 obese Veterans. I am Principal Investigator for an HSR&D- and MIRECC-funded survey study that examines the role of social and neighborhood factors in prevention and management of chronic disease among Veterans. Lastly, I also have an interest in maximizing research impact ... by communicating about science to the public and policymakers.  Read more

Publications 
University Web Profile
George N. Ioannou, MD, MS
Dr. Ioannou is an Investigator with HSR&D, Director of Hepatology at VA Puget Sound health Care System and a Professor of Medicine at the University of Washington. His research interests include the epidemiology of chronic liver disease, hepatocellular carcinoma, NAFLD, optimizing outcomes in liver transplantation, antiviral treatment for hepatitis C virus and predictive modeling. He received his MD from Oxford University and his MS from the School of Public health, Division of Epidemiology at the University of Washington.

Publications
University Web Profile
Jodie G. Katon, PhD, MS
Dr. Jodie Katon is an epidemiologist and health services researcher. She is a Core Investigator at the VA Puget Sound Health Services Research and Development Center of Innovation for Veteran-Centered and Value-Driven Care, and a Research Assistant Professor in the University of Washington Department of Health Services.  Prior to her present role she served as a Senior Reproductive Epidemiology Consultant for the VA Office of Women's Health Services.  Dr. Katon holds a MS in epidemiology from the University of California Los Angeles and a PhD in epidemiology from the University of Washington. Her research focuses on reproductive and sexual health, the intersections of these with mental health... and chronic disease, and health equity.  Her five-year VA Career Development Award seeks to understand women Veterans' access, utilization, and outcomes of VA maternity care with the goal of identifying modifiable risk factors and acceptable strategies for enhancing care and improving outcomes for pregnant Veterans.  In addition to her Career Development Award Dr. Katon is a Co-PI on an Investigator Initiated Research award focused on equity in gynecology care for uterine fibroids in VA.  Dr. Katon co-leads the VA Reproductive Health Work Group and is an active member of the Seattle chapter of 500 Women Scientists, an organization that advocates for equity, justice, and inclusivity in the sciences; increased scientific literacy through public engagement; engagement in science policy; and empowering women in science.  Read more

Publications
University Web Profile
Keren Lehavot, PhD
Dr. Lehavot is a Core Investigator with HSR&D and Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences at the University of Washington. She is a clinical psychologist by training and provides clinical care in the PTSD Outpatient Clinic at VA Puget Sound. Her research interests focus on health disparities for vulnerable populations, LGBT issues, risk factors and consequences of trauma, and targeted treatments for women Veterans with mental health concerns. She was awarded a VA CSR&D-funded Career Development Award focused on adapting and evaluating a web-based PTSD intervention for women Veterans (2014-2019). Her current projects focus on identifying and understanding... health disparities for LGBT Veterans and examining prosthetic outcomes for women Veteran amputees. She received her PhD in clinical psychology from the University of Washington.  Read more

Publications
University Web Profile
Alyson J. Littman, PhD, MPH
Dr. Littman is an Research Associate Professor in the Department of Epidemiology at the University of Washington and an Epidemiologist with the Seattle Epidemiologic Research and Information Center. She conducts research in several areas including lower limb amputation and physical activity and weight management. She is the PI/Co-PI of a study on outcomes after toe amputation in Veterans with diabetes and a second study on prosthetic needs and outcomes in women Veteran amputees. Additionally, she is co-leading a study on nature contact and hiking in Veterans with PTSD.  Dr. Littman’s research includes observational studies, randomized trials, and mixed method research... At the University of Washington, she co-teaches a course on Applied Epidemiologic Methods (Epi 514).
Read more

Publications
University Web Profile
Charles C. Maynard, PhD, MSW
Dr. Maynard is an affiliate investigator with HSR&D and Research Professor Emeritus in the Department of Health Services at the University of Washington. His research interests include service connected disability, cardiovascular data analysis and VA administrative databases. He received his PhD in Sociology and MSW from the University of Washington.

Publications
University Web Profile
Karin M. Nelson, MD, MSHS
Karin (“Kari”) Nelson, MD, MSHS, is a general internist and health services researcher at the VA Puget Sound Health Care System. She is a Professor of Medicine in the University of Washington (UW) School of Medicine, Adjunct Professor in the UW School of Public Health and core investigator at the Seattle Health Services Research & Development (HSR&D) Center of Innovation (COIN). Dr. Nelson is the director of the Primary Care Analytics Team (PCAT) for the VHA’s Office of Primary Care. As an investigator for the PACT national evaluation, she won the 2015 VHA HSR&D’s Best Research Paper of the Year Award for Nelson, et al. “Implementation of the Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA)” published in JAMA Internal Medicine. Her primary research focus is in improving disease self-management, focusing on ...peer support interventions. She actively mentors many junior faculty and is Co-Director for the MD fellowship program in the Seattle HSR&D COIN. She is a primary care physician at the VA Puget Sound. Dr. Nelson received her medical degree from the University of Minnesota, and her Masters in Health Services from UCLA.  Read more

Publications
University Web Profile
Ann M. O’Hare, MD
Dr. O’Hare is a nephrologist and health services researcher who is a staff physician at the VA Puget Sound Health Care System, Professor of Medicine at the University of Washington, and Affiliate Investigator at Kaiser Permanente Research Institute. Her major clinical and research interest is in the care of older adults with chronic kidney disease. She is a former recipient of a VA HSR&D career development award and a Beeson Career Development Award from the NIA. She currently serves as a PI on a VA IIR focused on the impact of VA community care policy on outcomes among veterans with advanced kidney disease.  She is also a co-investigator on an NIDDK contract for the United States Renal Data System, a national registry for end-stage kidney disease.  She lives in Seattle with her husband, two teenage children and poorly trained labradoodle (Bubba O’Hare).

Publications
Lynn F. Reinke, PhD, ARNP
Dr. Reinke is a Core Investigator with HSR&D and Clinical Associate Professor in the Department of Biobehavioral Nursing & Health Systems at the University of Washington. Her research interests include end-of-life communication for patients with life-limiting illnesses and testing palliative care interventions for patients newly diagnosed with lung cancer. Dr. Reinke received a PhD in Nursing from the University of Washington and a Master’s degree in Pulmonary Nursing from the University of Pittsburgh.

Publications
Mark A, Reger, PhD
Chief of Psychology Services,VA Puget Sound Health Care System Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, University of Washington School of Medicine.

Dr. Reger is a suicide prevention researcher and health services investigator. He has served as the principal investigator for multiple large VA and DoD-funded suicide prevention studies. He has extensive experience conducting clinical trials and has authored over 70 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters. In a previous position, he led the development and implementation of the Department of Defense’s world-wide suicide surveillance program. He is a frequent contributor to national initiatives to translate research into policy and best-practices, and he is often asked to ...consult with national leaders on suicide prevention issues. He has been interviewed by numerous national TV, radio, and news outlets. Dr. Reger completed his doctorate in clinical psychology at the Rosemead School of Psychology at Biola University. He completed a three-year National Institutes of Health postdoctoral fellowship at the VA Puget Sound Health Care System/University of Washington School of Medicine.  Read more

Publications 
Univeristy Web Profile
Emily C. Williams, PhD, MPH
Dr. Williams is an addictions health services and disparities researcher and an implementation scientist. She has a joint appointment as a core investigator and co-director of the post-doctoral fellowship at the Denver-Seattle Center of Innovation for Veteran-Centered Value-Driven Care at VA Puget Sound Health Services Research & Development and an Associate Professor of Health Services and Director of the Doctoral Program in Health Services at the University of Washington. Her work is focused on increasing access to evidence-based treatments for unhealthy alcohol and other substance use in primary care settings, as well as specialty settings serving patients with HIV and Hepatitis-C, and understanding equity ... in this care for vulnerable patient populations. Dr. Williams completed a VA HSR&D Career Development Award.  Her work has included epidemiologic evaluations of alcohol screening questionnaires; descriptions of, and outcomes associated with, patient readiness to change drinking; evaluations of racial, gender, and geographic disparities in the correlates and management of unhealthy alcohol use in the VA; and mixed-methods evaluations of the VA’s implementation of alcohol screening and brief intervention—an accomplishment for which the VA has been recognized as an international leader. She currently leads research focused on understanding patterns of alcohol use and care across transgender status, tailoring and testing practice facilitation to implement evidence-based alcohol-related care in hepatology clinics, and increasing access to medications for opioid use disorders in primary care

Dr. Williams has authored over 100 peer-reviewed publications and has served as an Associate Editor for Addiction Science & Clinical Practice since its inception as an open access journal in 2012. She serves on the board of the NIDA-funded NYU Substance Abuse Research, Education, and Treatment training program and on the Addictions Health Services Research Conference planning committee. She completed undergraduate training in political science at Lewis & Clark College, a master’s degree in public health law at Boston University, a PhD in Health Services from the University of Washington, and a fellowship with the Implementation Research Institute at Washington University.
  Read more

Publications
University Web Profile
Edwin S. Wong, PhD, MA
Dr. Wong is a Core Investigator and economist with HSR&D and Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Health Services at the University of Washington. His research focuses on Veterans’ health care demand, econometric methods to improve measurement of health system performance and cost-effectiveness analysis. His HSR&D-funded Career Development Award seeks to identify key determinants of dual use of VA and non-VA care, and most notably examines the potential impact of the Affordable Care Act on Veterans’ choice of VA as a source of care. Dr. Wong received his PhD in Economics from the University of Washington.

Publications
University Web Profile
Susan P. Y. Wong, MD, MS
Dr. Wong is a Core Investigator at the COIN, an Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Division of Nephrology at the University of Washington and a nephrologist at the VA Puget Sound Health Care System in Seattle, WA. She received her medical degree from the University of Pittsburgh, and her internal medicine and nephrology training, master of science in epidemiology, and graduate certificates in palliative care and clinical ethics from the University of Washington. She receives funding from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Disease, National Palliative Care Research Center, and VA National Center for Ethics in Health Care. Dr. Wong leads a patient-oriented research program on treatment practices ...and end-of-life care among patients with advanced kidney disease in VA and non-VA settings. Her goal is to create more patient-centered models of care for patients with kidney disease.  Read more
University Web ProfileSteven B. Zeliadt, PhD, MPH