David A. Dorr appointed chief research information officer

David A. Dorr M.D., M.S.

Advances in basic science, population health and individual health care rely on increasingly large data sets. That is particularly true in the areas of cancer, undiagnosed diseases and infectious diseases.

David A. Dorr, M.D., M.S., has been appointed chief research information officer at OHSU. His role will be to grow technology and software systems to support the innovative work done by OHSU researchers, with a focus on clinical and translational informatics, computational techniques, implementation science and clinical research.

The goal is to improve OHSU’s ability to generate knowledge from patient care and to apply that knowledge more effectively in the future care of patients.

David H. Ellison, M.D., associate vice president for Clinical and Translational Research and director of Oregon Clinical and Translational Research Institute, will guide his efforts, along with a multiple stakeholder team. Bridget Barnes, M.B.A., M.S.E.M., vice president and chief information officer, will oversee the efforts’ integration with strategic goals and requirements for information technology. Dorr will continue substantial academic efforts within the Department of Medical Informatics and Clinical Epidemiology under the leadership of the chair, William Hersh, M.D., F.A.C.M.I, F.A.C.P.

Dorr, professor of medical informatics and clinical epidemiology and professor of medicine, OHSU School of Medicine, has been a researcher and clinician at OHSU since 2005. His research has focused on using data, information and knowledge to care for vulnerable populations, starting with the Care Management Plus model of care. In this model, care managers embedded in primary care teams use population health management tools to identify high needs patients; the model has influenced national policy and implementation.

In addition to the Care Management Plus project, Dorr has collaborated on a number of other large grants, including the EvidenceNOW: National Evaluation Team ESCALATES led by Deborah Cohen, Ph.D., and the regional Healthy Hearts Northwest cooperative, which facilitated the measurement of and improvement in heart health measures in small and medium size primary care clinics. He also has worked closely with Melissa Haendel, Ph.D., on the Center for Data to Health, intended to help institutions and organizations improve their people, data and tool infrastructures to improve team science and facilitate clinical and translational research.

Collaboration, sharing and dissemination are critical to new biomedical knowledge. Dorr’s first steps will include initiating conversations with researchers and target a number of issues they face, particularly those aimed at improving patient care. Dorr will be soliciting needs and engagement from departments and investigators over the next several months.