Research News

View the latest edition of the CHOT Quarterly Newsletter.

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Texas A&M on State Laws and Health Information Exchanges

Texas A&M State Laws & HIEs / November 15, 2017

College Station, TX – Health information exchanges (HIE) are a way for patients, providers and other health care stakeholders to overcome the long-standing habit of storing medical information in separate and sometimes redundant systems. Data sharing through HIEs hold promise for more efficient, higher quality and better coordinated health care, and although the use of HIEs has been growing in recent years, these tools face obstacles to more widespread use. Many of these obstacles can be attributed to the complex network of laws related to HIEs; however, research on how these laws affect HIE adoption remains scarce… Click the link to read more!

ASPPH logo


ASPPH Friday Newsletter September 08, 2017

Washington, D.C. – Each Friday, the Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health’s (ASPPH) releases a robust and insightful newsletter. They highlight the most current research, opportunities, public health events, and groundbreaking developments from CEPH-accredited schools and programs of public health. This weeks letter features articles ranging from public health graduate school fairs to integrating advocacy into the undergraduate curriculum. It also features research reports on topics such as changing the screening for diabetes, food justice in today’s world, and the stigmatization of people with TB in regards to obtaining treatment.

Eva Lee, Site director

Dr. Eva Lee
Georgia Institute of Technology 

ISyE Professor Eva Lee Appointed to Virginia C. and Joseph C. Mello Chair / June 05, 2017

Atlanta, GA – The Stewart School of Industrial & Systems Engineering (ISyE) at Georgia Tech announced that Professor Eva Lee has been appointed to the Virginia C. and Joseph C. Mello Chair, effective July 1, 2017. “It is a great honor to be appointed to the Mello Chair. This is a challenging time for health care, with rapid technological advances, enormous data availability, growing demand for evidence-based care, and shifting policies and regulations,” said Lee. “While cost and efficiency remain critical, all of the above provide an opportunity to shape the landscape of health care and bring about true transformation. I look forward to making significant contributions to this important and dynamic field, and to educating and nurturing its next generation of leaders.”


Texas A&M on Factors Affecting Physical Activity in Older Adults

Texas A&M SPH Researchers featured in ASPPH  / July 07, 2017

College Station, TX – A new study by researchers from the Texas A&M School of Public Health, Texas A&M College of Architecture, and Baylor Scott & White Health, published in the journal BMC Geriatrics, looked into different individual and environmental factors that might affect physical activity in older adults. Study participants filled out a survey about their levels of physical activity and factors commonly related to activity levels. “This study serves as another step toward understanding how to promote physical activity in older adults and shows the important role that physicians’ play,” said Dr. Samuel N. Forjuoh, clinical collaborator from Baylor Scott & White Health. This research has implications for an overall ‘exercise is medicine’ message. Dr. Ory advises “physicians be encouraged to talk to their older patients about how to get the proper ‘dose’ of physical activity. This can be helped by finding ways to limit barriers such as overcoming some of the mental health and environmental issues that contribute to lower physical activity levels and identifying how to enhance positive factors such as social supports.”

Elizabeth Popp
Texas A&M University 

Texas A&M Center for Health Organization Transformation REU featured by Mays Business School for healthcare research

CHOT REU featured by Mays Business School  / April, 13, 2017

College Station, TX – While many business majors are preparing for careers in advertising, investment banking, or corporate accounting, sophomore Elizabeth Popp’s sights are set on medicine. The Business Honors and management major is using her time at Texas A&M’s Mays Business School to prepare for a career in pediatric surgery. As a research experience undergraduate (REU) at CHOT, she contributed to a research project overseen by Bita A. Kash and Jane N. Bolin that aims to develop a healthcare model for the state of Texas. The study was recently accepted for publication in the International Journal for Innovation Science.

People on horseback herding cows from the lakePeople on horseback herding cows from the lake


Partners in Sustainable Development

Partners In Sustainable Development / February, 18, 2017

College Station, TX – The Nuclear Power Institute (NPI) and the Nuclear Security Science and Policy Institute (NSSPI) are joint centers of Texas A&M University and the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station that are dedicated to promoting the safe and secure growth of nuclear energy in the world. Both NPI and NSSPI work with both nuclear “newcomer” countries and countries with active nuclear programs to provide tailor-made training for professionals. These training programs aim to build a highly-qualified workforce to ensure the development of safe and secure nuclear energy programs. Both organizations have Observer status at the IAEA General Conference.

Patients at physicians office


Improving outcomes by centralizing data for young patients in Houston / February, 18, 2017

Houston, TX – Five years ago, Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston faced a conundrum. The health records of thousands of young patients who were showing up in its three hospitals’ ERs with asthma attacks and other emergencies weren’t readily at hand for the attending physicians. They were housed not just in the 50-plus primary-care pediatric practices and seven urgent-care centers that were in its network, but in pediatric practices all over the city.

NSF booklet cover 2016


Industry-Nominated Technology Breakthroughs / October, 03, 2016

College Station, TX – An I/UCRC-attributable technological advance or breakthrough is defined as center-related research that either directly or indirectly led to, or likely will lead to, significant process improvements, new processes or techniques, new/improved products or services, and/or economic benefits such as cost savings, increased profits and/or job growth for the sponsor, the industrial sector, and/or the nation’s economy. Check out CHOT’s three highlighted projects!

CHOT 2016 compendium of Industry Nominated NSF I/UCRC Technological Breakthroughs (PDF)

Person on a computer


Designing a Better Space for Cancer Care / July, 25, 2016

College Station, TX – The future of cancer care – and perhaps health care more broadly – will likely look very different in the future than it does today. To keep up, new hospitals will have to be built with innovative space and design principles – but what will those look like?

Dr. Bita Kash headshot

Dr. Bita Kash
Texas A&M University 

Texas A&M Center for Health Organization Transformation Partners with Global Architectural Firm to Translate Innovations in Health Care Delivery / April, 28, 2016

College Station, TX – HKS, Inc. is the first architecture firm to join the Center for Health Organization Transformation (CHOT) at the Texas A&M Health Science Center School of Public Health. The design firm’s involvement will help to expand the dialogue on how the built environment can inform and support emerging models of care.

Hands on keyboard of a computer


Evaluating Health Information Exchanges

Vital Record / April, 13, 2016

College Station, TX – Imagine that you are hundreds of miles from home and you need medical treatment. When the nurse asks for your health history, you might be able to rattle off a list of your current medications and major allergies, but when they start probing more deeply (What doses of the medications do you take? What were the results of your last blood test?), you’re stumped.

Nembhard, industrial engineering at Pennsylvania State University

Dr. Harriet B. Nembhard
Pennsylvania State University 

IME faculty members receive seed grant funding from the College of Engineering

Penn State Engineering / April, 4, 2016

University Park, PA – Researchers from the Harold and Inge Marcus Department of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering (IME) submitted two of the six proposals that have been selected to receive funding through the College of Engineering’s Multidisciplinary Seed Grant program.

Neurological disease


H. Nembhard receives funding to lead Parkinson’s disease research

Penn State Engineering / February 24, 2016

University Park, PA – Harriet Nembhard, professor of industrial engineering and director of the Penn State Center for Integrated Healthcare Delivery Systems, has been awarded $50,000 by the Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI) at Penn State for research relating to treating and monitoring patients with Parkinson’s disease remotely.

Unspecified rural setting


SpaceX chooses Texas A&M to host Hyperloop Design Competition

Texas A&M Engineering / June 16, 2015

College Station, TX – Some of the best and brightest engineering minds from around the country will be coming to Texas A&M University in January for a SpaceX competition to design and build the company’s proposed Hyperloop transit pod. The competition’s design weekend, which SpaceX announced Monday will be hosted by the Dwight Look College of Engineering at Texas A&M, is geared toward university students and independent engineering teams. It begins in January 2016.

Large conference from the Hyperloop pod competition


SpaceX’s Hyperloop Pod Competition Just Kicked Off in Texas

Fortune / January 29, 2016

College Station, TX – Last weekend, Texas A&M University hosted the first ever SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition, welcoming special guests Elon Musk and U.S. Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx, and 115 student engineering teams from around the world.

Locked jaw


Applying Technology From Aerospace Engineering To The Human Jaw

Vital Record / January 4, 2016

College Station, TX –  Ritesh Bhattacharjee was working as a dental oncologist in India when he met Raktim Bhattacharya, Ph.D., a Texas A&M associate professor in aerospace, electrical and computer engineering at the Dwight Look College of Engineering. In the course of their conversation, they discussed lockjaw – the inability to open the mouth widely – that resulted from radiation therapy for head and neck cancer.

Physicians walking down hospital hallway


Texas A&M CHOT one of five collaborating institutions awarded $250K to study transitions of care strategies

ASPPH / December 18, 2015

College Station, TX – Texas A&M-CHOT site is one of five collaborating institutions awarded $250,000 for a one-year study to research strategies for reducing preventable hospital readmissions at the Texas Medical Center (TMC). The goals of this project are to determine which of a number of transitions of care strategies will be most effective and least costly to reduce unplanned readmissions back to participating acute care hospitals in the TMC and to assess the validity of existing models used to predict risk of readmission.

Elementary school students working at standing desks


Dr. Mark Benden’s research on standing desks reveal increased engagement and calorie burn

The Blaze / December 11, 2015

College Station, TX – Dr. Mark Benden (Texas A&M University) found that elementary school students who used standing desks burned 15 percent more calories than those using seated desks. Obese children saw an even more dramatic increase in calorie expenditure, burning 25 percent more.

Dr. Eva Lee headshot

Dr. Eva Lee
Georgia Institute of Technology 

Dr. Eva Lee wins the INFORMS Daniel H. Wagner Prize competition

INFORMS / November 24, 2015

Atlanta, GA – Dr. Eva Lee (CHOT Georgia Institute of Technology Site Director) won the INFORMS Daniel H. Wagner Prize competition for her work on Machine Learning Framework for Predicting Vaccine Immunogenicity along with Bali Pulendran, Helder Nakaya and Troy Quere, Emory University; and Greg Burel, Ferdinand Pietz and Bernard Benecke, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Glass test tubes


Texas A&M Advances To 17th In New NSF Research Rankings

Texas A&M Today / November 23, 2015

College Station, TX – Texas A&M climbs two positions on NSF’s Higher Education Research and Development (HERD) Survey which ranked 895 U.S. colleges and universities based on research and development expenditures. Texas A&M remains the state’s only university in the survey’s top 20.

Harriet B. Nembhard headshot

Dr. Harriet B. Nembhard,
Pennsylvania State University

H. Nembhard to serve as featured panelist at international World Quality Forum

Penn State News / October 21, 2015

University Park, PA — Harriet Black Nembhard, professor of industrial engineering and director of the Center for Integrated Healthcare Delivery Systems (CIHDS) at Penn State, has been named a featured panelist at the World Quality Forum of the International Academy for Quality (IAQ) Oct. 26-27 in Budapest, Hungary.

The forum will feature panel discussions on quality tools, quality management, lean and six sigma processes, corporate and social responsibility, global quality education, quality development in health care and quality in manufacturing.

Dr. Len Berry headshot

Dr. Len Berry
Texas A&M University

When the Customer Is Stressed

Harvard Business Review / October 2015

Customers’ assessments of quality and value, decisions about what and where to buy, and recommendations to others are all influenced by emotions. But too often companies don’t adequately anticipate those emotions and therefore can’t mitigate negative ones in the design of their offerings. This is especially true for high-emotion services-those that trigger strong feelings before the service even begins. Services relating to major life events such as birth, marriage, illness, and death fall into this category, as do airline travel, car and computer repair, and home buying, selling, and renovation.

Young girl giving thumbs-up

Texas A&M University

Texas A&M Launches “Healthy South Texas”

Texas A&M Today / September 30, 2015

Corpus Christi, TX – John Sharp, chancellor of The Texas A&M University System, along with Senator Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa, today announced the launch of “Healthy South Texas,” a novel effort to reduce preventable diseases and their consequences throughout the region. The pilot program of the Healthy Texas Initiative, “Healthy South Texas” will combine the expertise of the Texas A&M Health Science Center with Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service’s one-of-a-kind, statewide reach to promote preventative health at the most local level of the community, improving the well-being of South Texans for generations to come.

Harriet B. Nembhard headshot

Dr. Harriet B. Nembhard,
Pennsylvania State University

H. Nembhard accepted into the Penn State Hershey Leadership Academy

Penn State News / September 29, 2015

University Park, PA – Harriet Black Nembhard, professor of industrial engineering and director of the Center for Integrated Healthcare Delivery Systems (CIHDS) at Penn State, has been accepted into the elite Penn State Hershey Leadership Academy for Excellence in Academic Medicine for 2015.

The academy will be held Oct. 12-16 at Keller Building on the University Park campus. It is a rigorous weeklong program that features sessions on strategic planning, collaborative problem solving, case analyses and budgetary challenges within the academic healthcare setting.

Dr. Bita Kash headshot

Dr. Bita Kash
Texas A&M University

Texas A&M National Research Cooperative and Major Philadelphia Health System Partner to Combat Health Disparities

Association of Schools of Public Health / Posted August 11, 2015

College Station, TX – Main Line Health, a five-hospital teaching health system in suburban Philadelphia, recently became a member of the Center for Health Organization Transformation (CHOT) at the Texas A&M Health Science Center School of Public Health – an industry-university cooperative research center funded by the National Science Foundation and other health care organizations.

Texas A&M School of Public Health logo

Texas A&M University
School of Public Health

Texas A&M University Awarded Grant to Reduce Teen Pregnancies

Texas Medical Center News / Posted July 28, 2015

College Station, TX – The Center for Community Health Development at the Texas A&M Health Science Center School of Public Health received a $7.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Adolescent Health. The grant will be used to reduce teen pregnancies in high-risk populations.