Principal Investigators and Program Directors

Deborah Krakow

Deborah Krakow, MD, Professor and Chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery and Human Genetics at DGSOM, serves as co-MPI of the PCORT UroGynCan program as well as a mentor. In her research, Dr. Krakow focuses on the molecular basis of congenital birth defects, particularly those that affect the skeleton, to better understand the underlying genetic mechanisms that affect skeletogenesis. She has devoted the last several years researching the genes that cause the development of skeletal dysplasias prior to birth (R01AR066124). She is a co-director of the International Skeletal Dysplasias Registry, a NIH project that studies the natural history, treatment, and basic causes of the skeletal dysplasias. The Registry has the largest archive of prenatal cases in the world. Her current research involves the molecular genetics of Facio-Audio Symphalangism, where she is attempting to locate the gene for this web-fingered, web-toed condition (R01DE019567). In pursuing this research agenda, she maintains a commitment to clinical education and research training of next-generation clinicians and scientists. Dr. Krakow oversees development of the gynecologic cancer curriculum and scope of hands-on research opportunities of the PCORT UroGynCan T32 program, facilitating all activities of the mentors and trainees.


Mark Litwin

Mark S. Litwin, MD, MPH, Professor and Fran & Ray Stark Foundation Chair of the Department of Urology at DGSOM, Professor of Health Policy and Management at the Fielding School of Public Health, and Professor of Nursing at the School of Nursing, serves as co-MPI of the PCORT UroGynCan program as well as a mentor. A former RWJ Clinical Scholar, Dr. Litwin has substantial experience in health services and patient-centered outcomes research, a distinguished record of mentoring fellows and junior faculty in research training and career development, and continuing leadership in and commitment to scientific workforce diversity. His research encompasses improving quality of care, quality of life, and equitable access to care in urologic oncology. He created and directs IMPACT, a state-funded program that provides free medical care statewide for low-income, uninsured men with prostate cancer. He leads several national and international research projects in quality of care and patient-centered outcomes in men with prostate cancer, funded by the American Cancer Society, the US Department of Defense, and the Movember Foundation. Dr. Litwin is Founder and Co-Director of the UCLA Gender Health Program. For 14 years, he led Urologic Diseases in America, the NIH’s largest effort at documenting the burden of urologic diseases on the American people.. Dr. Litwin’s work in establishing and promoting the discipline of urological health services research has been honored with the AUA Gold Cystoscope, the AUA Foundation Distinguished Mentor Award, the AUA Distinguished Service Award, and the American Association of Genitourinary Surgeons Barringer Medal. Dr. Litwin oversees development of the urologic cancer curriculum and scope of hands-on research opportunities of the PCORT UroGynCan T32 program, facilitating all activities of the mentors and trainees.


Faculty Mentors

Jonathan Bergman

Jonathan Bergman, MD, MPH, Associate Professor of Clinical Urology and Family Medicine and former RWJF Clinical Scholar at DGSOM, conducts research in clinical services improvement for high-value health care in safety-net settings. His research agenda includes palliative and end-of-life care. Dr. Bergman actively mentors medical students, research residents, and fellows on career goals, impacting the health of populations, and other health services research issues.
Email: [email protected]


Arleen F Brown

Arleen F. Brown, MD, PhD, Professor of Medicine (General Internal Medicine and Health Services Research) at DGSOM and Chief of GIM-HSR at Olive View-UCLA Medical Center, conducts research on the contribution of individual, health care system, and community characteristics to racial/ethnic and socioeconomic health disparities for adults with diabetes and other chronic conditions. She is an expert in quantitative and qualitative research analysis and intervention development related to diabetes care and the treatment of cardiovascular disorders. In collaboration with proposed T32 mentor Keith Norris, she leads the Community Engagement and Research Program of the UCLA CTSI. At Olive View, Dr. Brown works closely with Dr. Carol Mangione (T32 mentor) to build curricular activities and mentorship programs for the primary care residents, create faculty development programs, and establish a new health services research/PCOR program.
Email: [email protected]


Karim Chamie

Karim Chamie, MD, MSHS, Associate Professor of Urology at DGSOM, Director of UCLA’s Urologic Oncology Fellowship, conducts research in all areas of urologic oncology, with particular expertise in the study and clinical management of urothelial carcinoma. Dr. Chamie is director of the Bladder Cancer Program and of the Society of Urologic Oncology-accredited Fellowship in the Department of Urology. He has a strong track record of mentoring and guiding fellows as clinicians, surgeons, and researchers.
Email: [email protected]


Joshua Cohen

Joshua Cohen, MD, Assistant Clinical Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at DGSOM, Director of UCLA’s Gynecologic Oncology Fellowship, focuses on gynecologic cancers in his research. He is currently studying ways in which patient care for epithelial ovarian cancer can be improved both in the hospital postoperatively and at home when undergoing treatment with chemotherapy and targeted agents, including mentoring of medical trainees in the development of electronic hand-held and mobile devices to assist patients with decision making and provide a new way to collect real time feedback from women undergoing treatment at UCLA.
Email: [email protected]


David Elashoff

David Elashoff, PhD, Professor of Medicine (General Internal Medicine and Health Services Research) at DGSOM and of Biostatistics at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, is Director of the Department of Medicine Statistics Core, which provides statistical consulting services for a wide range of research projects spanning basic science animal studies, translational research, observational studies, HSR/PCOR, and clinical trials, and of the UCLA CTSI Biostatistics, Study Design and Clinical Data Management Program, which oversees a network of biostatistics consulting services and collaborative research projects in genomics, proteomics, bioinformatics, dissemination/implementation, and clinical correlates.
Email: [email protected]


Joann G Elmore

Joann G. Elmore, MD, MPH, Professor of Medicine (General Internal Medicine and Health Services Research) and director of the National Clinician Scholars Program at DGSOM, studies variability in cancer screening, diagnostic testing, and evaluation of new technologies. She has co-authored a popular textbook on epidemiology, biostatistics, and preventive medicine. Dr. Elmore is a recipient of the Society for General Internal Medicine Mid-Career Mentorship Award.
Email: [email protected]


Arlene Fink

Arlene Fink, PhD, Adjunct Professor of Medicine and Public Health at UCLA, is an expert in survey methodology and program evaluation. She is PI and founder of the Langley Research Institute, which specializes in evaluating programs for vulnerable populations such as the indigent and the frail elderly. Dr. Fink is currently focusing her research activities on developing, implementing, and evaluating programs to improve the physical and mental health of vulnerable and historically underserved populations.
Email: [email protected]


Sheba George

Sheba George, PhD, Adjunct Associate Professor of Community Health Sciences at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health and Assistant Professor of Biomedical Informatics at Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science, has a broad background in sociology and public health, with specific expertise in a variety of quantitative and qualitative methods pertaining to health communication and culture in a variety of community and health organization contexts.
Email: [email protected]


Ronald Hays

Ronald Hays, PhD, Professor of Medicine (General Internal Medicine and Health Services Research) at DGSOM and Senior Health Scientist at RAND, has contributed to the development of research instruments to assess patient evaluations of health care, health-related quality of life, and other health outcomes. He has used these tools to assess individuals with diverse medical disorders and identify determinants of patient outcomes of health care. He is one of the principal investigators for the AHRQ-funded Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS®) and he also directs the Measurement Core of the UCLA/CDU Research Center for Minority Aging Research (RCMAR).
Email: [email protected]


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Christine H. Holschneider, MD, Professor and Chief of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Olive View-UCLA Medical Center, is developing a clinical research program in gynecologic oncology aimed at closing the health care disparities gap while providing career development and mentorship opportunities for trainees, fellows, and junior faculty. These efforts have focused on facilitating the participation of Olive View’s largely minority patients in NRG-Gynecologic Oncology Group (GOG) and GOG Foundation studies, as well as investigator initiated studies on cancer prevention, health education, pre-invasive disease, and cancer navigation. Her longstanding research focus has been on cervical cancer.
Email: [email protected]


Moira Inkelas

Moira Inkelas, PhD, MPH, Professor of Health Policy and Management and Assistant Director of the Center for Healthier Children, Families, and Communities at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, applies her training in public policy analysis and public health to examine how systems of care influence quality, access, and performance in children’s health care. She directs quality improvement initiatives to redesign primary care to achieve prevention and development goals for children and their families. Her recent collaborations focus on creating cross-sector learning systems that use process improvement and transformative care design strategies to produce better outcomes for populations of children. Dr. Inkelas directs the NRSA TL1 Training Core of the UCLA CTSI.
Email: [email protected]


Beth Karlan

Beth Y. Karlan, MD, Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Vice Chair of Women’s Health Research, and Director of Cancer Population Genetics at the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, at DGSOM, focuses on understanding the genetic and phenotypic determinants of ovarian cancer, hereditary predisposition to cancer, and molecular biomarkers for early detection, treatment, and prognostication of ovarian cancer. Dr. Karlan established a human tissue biorepository in 1989 to collect fresh frozen tissue, serum, and germline DNA from women with ovarian and other gynecologic cancers to be used for translational research studies. She is also at the forefront of scientific and clinical efforts related to women/families with BRCA mutations, and currently serves as a MPI on a large national project seeking to democratize access to testing for BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations. Recently, Dr. Karlan was inducted by OncLive into the 2019 class of Giants of Cancer Care for her contributions to cancer research and clinical practice in gynecologic malignancies.
Email: [email protected]


Clifford Y Ko

Clifford Y. Ko, MD, MS, MSHS, Professor of Surgery at DGSOM and Health Policy and Management at Fielding School of Public Health, Robert Day Chair of Surgical Outcomes, and Director of the Division of Research and Optimal Patient Care of the American College of Surgeons (ACS), created the Center for Surgical Outcomes and Quality (CSOQ) over a decade ago. CSOQ is nationally renowned for its surgical care focus on methodological issues, analytical measurement, cost effectiveness, measures development, quality improvement, and implementation of quality interventions, particularly across UCLA Health and affiliated partners such as VAGLAHS.
Email: [email protected]


Carol M Mangione

Carol M. Mangione, MD, MSPH, Barbara A. Levey & Gerald S. Levey Endowed Chair and Professor and Division Chief of General Internal Medicine and Health Services Research at DGSOM, and Professor of Health Policy and Management at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, is Director of the UCLA CTSI Workforce Development Program and plays a leading role in the coordination and integration of training and career development programs in the health sciences across the four CTSI partner institutions. Dr. Mangione is a recipient of the Society for General Internal Medicine Mid-Career Mentorship Award. She is Director of the NIAfunded UCLA/Drew Resource Center for Minority Aging Research/Center for Health Improvement of Minority Elderly (RCMAR III/CHIME II). In her multiple research agendas, Dr. Mangione focuses on quality of care for persons with diabetes and the relationship among organization of care, cost sharing, control of cardiovascular risk factors, and process outcomes such as adherence to medications.
Email: [email protected]


Keith C Norris

Keith C. Norris, MD, PhD, Professor of Medicine (General Internal Medicine and Health Services Research) at DGSOM, has dedicated over 20 years of his professional life to addressing health disparities and to directing and participating in the training and career development of minority health professionals. As a nephrologist, he conducts research on renal osteodystrophy; the epidemiology, prevention, and treatment of hypertension and chronic kidney disease; and the reduction of health disparities, with a focus on kidney disease and cardiometabolic risk factors. In collaboration with mentor Arleen Brown, he leads the Community Engagement and Research Program of the UCLA CTSI.
Email: [email protected]


Michael K Ong

Michael K. Ong, MD, PhD, Professor of Medicine (General Internal Medicine and Health Services Research) at DGSOM and Chief of the Hospitalist Division at the VAGLAHS, is a former RWJF Physician Faculty Scholar (2009–2012 Cohort). Trained in health economics, Dr. Ong is mainly and broadly interested in improving the delivery of appropriate and efficient health care by primary care providers. His research focuses on several areas of general medicine, including mental health, tobacco control, and care setting transition. He was PI of the AHRQ-funded “Better Effectiveness after Transition–Heart Failure” (R01HS019311), an innovative comparative effectiveness intervention for and evaluation of hospitalized heart failure patients, designed to reduce unnecessary 180-day rehospitalizations, lower costs, and improve patient outcomes. Dr. Ong is director of the AHRQ-PCORI-funded Stakeholder-Partnered Implementation Research and Innovation Translation (SPIRIT) K12 Center of Excellence in Learning Health System Researcher Training.
Email: [email protected]


Christopher S. Saigal, MD, MPH, Professor and Vice Chair of the Department of Urology at DGSOM, has a longstanding clinical interest in shared decision-making in urologic cancers and other conditions. His NIH- and PCORI-funded research focuses on patient-centered decision support, quality of care, disease prevention, sexual dysfunction, administrative data set analyses, and patient preference assessment.
Email: [email protected]


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Erin N. Saleeby, MD, MPH, Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at DGSOM and Director of Women’s Health Programs and Innovation at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, focuses on improving provision of preventive obstetrical services, particularly to vulnerable women, using data to inform practice and policy, and redesigning systems using a community-based and practice-based participatory process.
Email: [email protected]


Paul G Shekelle

Paul G. Shekelle, MD, PhD, Professor of Medicine (General Internal Medicine and Health Services Research) at DGSOM and Chief of General Internal Medicine at VAGLAHS, is Director of the HSR&D Evidence Synthesis Program at the VA, and of the Southern California Evidence-Based Practice Center and the Quality Assessment and Improvement Program at RAND in Santa Monica. Dr. Shekelle also directs the Health Information Technology research program at the AHRQ-funded RAND Center of Excellence on Health System Performance, which aims to identify the attributes that promote rapid implementation of evidence-based medicine into routine medical practice to improve quality, lower costs, and create better outcomes for patients.
Email: [email protected]


Brian Shuch

Brian Shuch, MD, Associate Professor of Urology at DGSOM and Alvin & Carrie Meinhardt Endowed Chair and Director of the Kidney Cancer Research Program, focuses on decision-making with respect to small renal mass enhanced biopsies and molecular imaging, delivery models of genetic counseling, and evaluation of satisfaction with, costs of, and adherence to clinical guidelines.
Email: [email protected]


Stephanie L Taylor

Stephanie L. Taylor, PhD, MPH, Associate Director of the VAGLAHS HSR&D Center for the Study of Healthcare Innovation, Implementation & Policy (CSHIIP) and Adjunct Professor of Health Policy and Management at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, is a medical sociologist and epidemiologist who conducts research on complementary and integrative health (yoga, meditation, acupuncture, etc.), pain, implementation of interventions, environmental/contextual/organizational influences on health and health care, patient safety, and sociomedical disparities in health and health care.
Email: [email protected]


Amy Weimer

Amy K. Weimer, MD, Assistant Professor of Medicine (General Internal Medicine and Health Services Research) and Pediatrics at DGSOM and Co-Director of the Gender Health Program, focuses on improving care for the transgender and gender-diverse population. She is currently working to create a tool in the electronic health record system to coordinate cancer screenings in transgender individuals based on treatment history and current anatomy.
Email: [email protected]


Kenneth B Wells

Kenneth B. Wells, MD, PhD, David Weil Endowed-Chair and Professor of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences at DGSOM and the VAGLAHS and of Health Policy and Management at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, is a psychiatrist and health services researcher who investigates how variations in health services systems and financing affect clinical care. He also focuses on the use of community-partnered participatory research to address disparities in access to and outcomes of services for depression and was a principal developer of the Community Partners in Care model.
Email: [email protected]


Elizabeth Yano

Elizabeth M. Yano, PhD, MSPH, Director of and Senior Research Career Scientist at the VAGLAHS HSR&D Center for the Study of Healthcare Innovation, Implementation & Policy (CSHIIP) and Adjunct Professor of Health Policy and Management at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, has over 25 years’ experience in health services research and is an internationally recognized expert on organizational influences on quality of care and implementation of evidence-based practice. She has led a series of national studies examining the VA’s quality transformation, implementation of patient-centered medical homes, and delivery of VA women’s health services.
Email: [email protected]