NIH: Office of Disease Prevention

Medicine: Mind the Gap

Use of the Electronic Medical Record in Prevention Research

June 15, 2017
This Medicine: Mind the Gap lecture was presented as a webinar.

William M. Vollmer, Ph.D.

William M. Vollmer, Ph.D. External Website Policy
Senior Investigator, Center for Health Research
Kaiser Permanente


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About the Webinar

The widespread adoption of electronic medical records (EMRs) has created enormous possibilities for embedding prevention activities into the fabric of care and for conducting research to formally evaluate various prevention strategies. This webinar provided some examples of the types of prevention activities that can be fostered using the EMR, provided some historical perspective on the challenges of using the EMR to conduct research more generally, and gave specific examples of prevention-oriented research that heavily relies on the EMR for its conduct.

About William M. Vollmer, Ph.D.

Dr. Vollmer is a biostatistician and health services researcher who has been conducting collaborative, multidisciplinary research at Kaiser Permanente’s Center for Health Research for over 30 years. His early work focused on the epidemiology and management of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease within the health plan, as well as on a series of collaborative clinical trials looking at non-pharmacologic approaches to the control of blood pressure and weight in which he directed or helped to direct the data coordinating center. More recently, his research has increasingly focused on the use of large, pragmatic trials to test strategies to improve population-based management of chronic diseases. He served as principal investigator for a two-region study focused on improving adherence to inhaled corticosteroids among patients with asthma, and a three-region study focused on improving adherence to statins, angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors, and angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) in adults with diabetes or existing CVD. The three-region study involved over 26,000 members. Dr. Vollmer currently serves as the statistician on two projects funded as part of the NIH Collaboratory: a study of pain management among members of three Kaiser Permanente regions, and a study to improve colorectal screening among members of 26 federally qualified health clinics.

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