PCORI Program Staff - James Hulbert, Pre-Award Manager, David Hickam, MD, PhD, Program Director, Clinical Effectiveness Research, Suzanne Schrandt, JD, Deputy Director of Patient Engagement and Tsahai Tafari, PhD, Senior Program Officer, Merit Review.
What: PCORI Program Staff discuss the following key topic areas:
New Collaborative Research Opportunities, Investigator Presentations and Discussion: Investigators interested in developing a multi-site research study for PCORI's consideration will present their research concepts to the audience to include PCORI Program Staff. Three to four investigators will be invited to make brief presentations. Please contact Angela Silva for more information.
James Hulbert is the Pre-Award Manager for the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). He is responsible for all aspects of application receipt, including developing application guidelines and policies, overseeing PCORI's helpdesk, developing applicant and reviewer training, and implementing merit review.
Hulbert has ten years of experience in program development, operations, and contract management. Before joining PCORI, he worked alongside researchers and clinicians at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center to build new research opportunities. He also has served as a manager at a non-profit foundation supporting military medical research. For more than six years, he worked closely with investigators to develop, apply, and manage federally-funded and industry-sponsored research programs around the world.
Hulbert attended Pacific Lutheran University where he received two BAs, one in sociology and another in social work.
David Hickam, MD, MPH, is the Program Director of the Clinical Effectiveness Research program at the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). He is responsible for developing PCORI's research program that evaluates comparisons among alternative clinical strategies in a broad range of clinical domains, and he also provides staff support to the PCORI Methodology Committee. Hickam is a specialist in internal medicine and has 30 years of experience as a health services researcher. His past research has focused on strategies for improving health care outcomes among adults with chronic diseases.
Hickam previously held the rank of professor in the Department of Medicine at Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU). He also held a joint faculty appointment in OHSU's Department of Medical Informatics and Epidemiology. He was a senior investigator in the Oregon Evidence-based Practice Center at OHSU and also served as co-director of the health services research and development program at the Portland VA Medical Center. He has expertise in a broad range of both quantitative and qualitative research methodologies.
In 2005, he became the founding director of the John M. Eisenberg Clinical Decisions and Communications Science Center, funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. The Eisenberg Center has developed innovative approaches for helping people use evidence-based information to participate in decision making about their health care.
Hickam received his BA from Stanford University, an MD from the University of California, San Francisco, and a MPH from the University of California, Berkeley.
Suzanne Schrandt, JD, is the Deputy Director of Patient Engagement at the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). She is responsible for supporting the Director of Patient Engagement in creating networks and engaging patients across the nation to provide broad-based input on the development and execution of PCORI’s research.
Schrandt has been involved in patient education and advocacy since being diagnosed with a form of rheumatoid arthritis as a teenager. For more than 15 years, she has advocated on behalf of children and adults with arthritis and has been engaged in numerous patient and provider education initiatives aimed at increasing early diagnosis and appropriate, patient-centered management of chronic disease.
Before coming to PCORI, Schrandt served as the health reform strategy team leader for the Kansas Health Institute, where she educated the state's policymakers, providers, and consumers on the implications of the Affordable Care Act. While there, Schrandt also led the Kansas Legislative Health Academy, an intensive educational experience for select Kansas legislators. Schrandt also previously served as the Coordinator of Public Health and Public Policy for the Arthritis Foundation in Kansas City and as a Research Associate for a Human Genome Research Institute Ethical, Legal, and Social Issues project.
Schrandt is a member of the Kansas Bar and the American Health Lawyers Association.
Tsahai Tafari, PhD, is the Senior Program Officer, Merit Review at the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). She oversees the work of the Merit Review Officers and promotes coordination among PCORI’s teams to ensure the scientific integrity of the merit review program.
Tafari joins PCORI from SRA International, where she was a scientific review manager. While at SRA, she managed the scientific peer review process for several large research programs on behalf of the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs of the Department of Defense. She also contributed to several process-improvement initiatives and program-evaluation projects. She began her tenure at SRA as a scientific review officer.
Before joining SRA, Tafari worked as a medical writer for MedThink Communications, where she created deliverables on therapeutic areas including pulmonary arterial hypertension, ulcerative colitis, and coagulative disorders. Her experience includes basic scientific research, clinical data analysis, peer review and program management, and program evaluation.
Tafari has a BA in history from Columbia University, and a PhD in biomedical sciences from the University of California at San Diego, with a focus on cell biology. She completed post-doctoral training at Duke University and at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences.