Elizabeth McGlynn awarded 2012 AcademyHealth Distinguished Investigator
McGlynn, director of the Kaiser Permanente Center for Effectiveness and Safety Research, is an internationally known expert in the evaluation of health care quality and a leader in the field of health services research. Among her many contributions to our understanding of the level and appropriateness of U.S. health care is the landmark 2003 study The Quality of Health Care Delivered to Adults in the United States, which found that, on average, American adults receive about half of recommended care. The study used a new method for evaluating quality that was developed under McGlynn’s leadership and garnered significant media attention, which contributed to a much broader understanding of the size and nature of the quality problem in the United States (McGlynn, E. et al, N Engl J Med 2003; 348:2635-2645, June 26, 2003). The research was recognized as the 2004 Academy Health Article of the Year.
Dr. McGlynn has dedicated her career to helping us understand, measure and evaluate health care quality, said AcademyHealth President and CEO Lisa Simpson, MD. Her research, leadership and counsel have been critically important to our ability to identify evidence-based strategies to improve care quality and outcomes. She is truly deserving of this high honor from our field.
McGlynn is currently leading efforts to further leverage Kaiser Permanente’s research infrastructure and integrated health care system to study the effectiveness and safety of new drugs, devices and therapeutic practices. The knowledge gained will enhance the ability of clinicians and patients to choose the diagnostic and therapeutic options that are best aligned with patient preferences. McGlynn is working to expand important collaborative partnerships between health care delivery system leaders and researchers, contributing to Kaiser Permanente’s goal of functioning as a learning health care organization.
McGlynn also collaborates on research studies led by colleagues at institutions other than Kaiser Permanente, with a current emphasis on quality measures for children admitted to hospitals with one of five respiratory conditions. In addition, she is part of a team that is seeking to develop measures for the Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act on care coordination for children with complex needs and for those with mental health problems.
Dr. McGlynn’s leadership and expertise as director of our Center for Effectiveness and Safety Research have been central to advancing our vision of Kaiser Permanente as a learning health care organization, said Raymond J. Baxter, PhD, senior vice president, Kaiser Permanente Community Benefit, Research and Health Policy. Given the profound impact that she has had in the field of health services research throughout her entire career, it comes as no surprise that she is this year’s Distinguished Investigator. We are deeply proud and honored to have her as part of the Kaiser Permanente research team.
McGlynn is a member of the Institute of Medicine and serves on a variety of national advisory committees. She was a member of the Strategic Framework Board that provided a blueprint for the National Quality Forum on the development of a national quality measurement and reporting system and currently co-chairs NQF’s Measurement Application Partnership Coordinating Committee. She serves as secretary/treasurer for the board of the American Board of Internal Medicine Foundation and is on the editorial boards of Health Services Research and The Milbank Quarterly. She formerly served as associate director of RAND Health and held the RAND Distinguished Chair in Health Care Quality. She is the immediate past-chair of AcademyHealth’s board of directors.
The Distinguished Investigator Award is presented in conjunction with the 2012 AcademyHealth Annual Research Meeting. The annual meeting is the premier forum for health services research, with more than 2,000 researchers, policymakers and health care providers gathering to discuss new and innovative evidence to improve health care access, quality, value and outcomes.
AcademyHealth is a leading national organization serving the fields of health services and policy research and the professionals who produce and use this important work. Together with our members, we offer programs and services that support the development and use of rigorous, relevant and timely evidence to increase the quality, accessibility, and value of health care, to reduce disparities, and to improve health. A trusted broker of information, AcademyHealth brings stakeholders together to address the current and future needs of an evolving health system, inform health policy, and translate evidence into action.
About Kaiser Permanente
Kaiser Permanente is committed to helping shape the future of health care. We are recognized as one of America’s leading health care providers and not-for-profit health plans. Founded in 1945, our mission is to provide high-quality, affordable health care services and to improve the health of our members and the communities we serve. We currently serve more than 9 million members in nine states and the District of Columbia. Care for members and patients is focused on their total health and guided by their personal physicians, specialists and team of caregivers. Our expert and caring medical teams are empowered and supported by industry-leading technology advances and tools for health promotion, disease prevention, state-of-the-art care delivery and world-class chronic disease management. Kaiser Permanente is dedicated to care innovations, clinical research, health education and the support of community health. For more information, go to: