Personnel

 

James Goodwin, M.D. James S. Goodwin, M.D.
Professor, Department of Internal Medicine and Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health
George & Cynthia Mitchell Distinguished Chair in Geriatric Medicine
Director, Sealy Center on Aging

Medical School: Harvard Medical School

Internship: Harbor General Hospital, Torrance, California

Residency: Internal Medicine, University of New Mexico School of Medicine, Albuquerque, New Mexico

Fellowship: Rheumatology, University of New Mexico School of Medicine, Albuquerque, New Mexico

James S. Goodwin, M.D. is co-director Center for Comparative Effectiveness and Cancer Outcomes. He has directed several large multidisciplinary research programs. These include the NCI-funded Center for Population Health and Health Disparities, the NIA-funded Claude Pepper Older Americans Independence Center and most recently Comparative Effectiveness Research of Cancer in Texas. Dr. Goodwin has been continuously funded by NIH for studies of the processes and outcomes of cancer care for 25 years. He was among the first to use Tumor Registry data and then Medicare billing data to examine how patterns in the diagnosis, treatment and outcomes of cancers vary with patient characteristics and geographic location. His 300 plus articles have been cited more than 14,000 times.

 

Hemalkumar B. MehtaHemalkumar B. Mehta, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Department of Surgery

Bachelor of Science: Pharmacy, North Maharashtra University, India, 2006

Masters of Science: Pharmacy Administration, University of Houston, Houston, TX 2010

Ph.D.: Pharmaceutical Health Outcomes and Policy, University of Houston, Houston, TX, 2014

Hemalkumar Mehta, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Surgery at UTMB. Dr. Mehta’s research interest includes risk adjustment, pharmacoepidemiology and comparative effectiveness research. He is an expert in evaluating health, economics and patient reported outcome using large administrative claims, electronic medical records and survey data.

 

Kimberly M. BrownKimberly M. Brown, M.D., FACS
Associate Professor, Department of Surgery
Section Chief, Hepato-Pancreatico-Biliary Surgery
James Edwin Thompson, MD Professor of Surgical Simulation
Director, Laboratory for Surgical Training, Assessment and Research (LSTAR)
Director, Surgery Student Clerkship
UT System Distinguished Teaching Professor

Medical School: University of Illinois-Chicago College of Medicine

Residency: Loyola University Medical Center, Maywood, IL

Fellowship: Surgical Oncology, Fox Chase Cancer Center, Philadelphia, PA; Minimally Invasive HPB Surgery, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, PA

Dr. Brown is an Associate Professor of Surgery and collaborator on various projects relating to patient outcomes in surgical conditions involving liver, biliary tract and pancreas. She serves as a mentor to student and resident trainees in and outside of the T-32 training program.

 

Brian DownerBrian Downer, PhD
Assistant Professor
Division of Rehabilitation Sciences

BS: Psychology, Aquinas College, Grand Rapids, MI, 2010

PhD: Gerontology, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY, 2014

Postdoctoral Fellowship: Minority Health and Aging, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX, 2016

Brian Downer, PhD is an Assistant Professor in the Division of Rehabilitation Sciences at UTMB. Dr. Downer’s research is focused on the epidemiology of dementia and cognitive decline, with an emphasis on Mexican and Mexican American populations. Since joining the Division of Rehabilitation Sciences in 2016, he has begun conducting research on the frequency and predictors of unplanned rehospitalizations among dementia patients.

 

Sapna KaulSapna Kaul, PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health

PhD: Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, Virginia

Postdoctoral Training: University of Utah School of Medicine, Salt Lake City, Utah

Sapna Kaul is an assistant professor of health economics in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health. She received her PhD in economics from Virginia Tech and post-doctoral training in health economics from the University of Utah School of Medicine. Dr. Kaul's research includes exploring health-related cost and outcomes for patients with chronic conditions such as cancer. Her work is heavily focused on econometric and statistical methods for handling complex healthcare utilization data. Dr. Kaul also has expertise in behavioral-economics (e.g., contingent valuation) for examining individual decision making related to healthcare services and goods.

 

Anthony SenagoreAnthony J. Senagore, M.D., M.S., M.B.A.
Professor and Vice Chair for Clinical Operations, Department of Surgery
Chief, GI & Oncologic Surgery
Co-Director Department of Surgery Clinical Outcomes Research Program

Medical School: Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan

Masters of Science: Physiology, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan

Masters of Business Administration: University of Phoenix, San Francisco, California

Residency: Butterworth Hospital, Michigan State University, Grand Rapids, Michigan

Clinical Fellowship: Ferguson Hospital, Colon and Rectal Surgery Residency, Grand Rapids, Michigan

Research Fellowship: Ferguson Hospital, Michigan State University, Grand Rapids and East Lansing, Michigan

Anthony J. Senagore, M.D., M.S., M.B.A. is Professor and Vice Chair for Clinical Operations in the Department of Surgery. Dr. Senagore is Co-Director of the Department of Surgery Clinical Outcomes Research Program. His research interests inlcude: quality improvement and comparative effectiveness strategies in surgical care; minimally invasive colectomy; improvements and new opportunities; immunomodulation of the surgical stress response; guided and personalized perioperative fluid management; enhanced recovery after surgery.

 

S. Phani VeerankiS. Phani Veeranki, MBBS, DrPH
Assistant Professor
Department of Preventative Medicine and Community Health

Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery: Siddhartha Medical College, NTR University of Health Sciences, India, 2006

Masters of Public Health: University of Illinois, 2009

Doctor of Public Health: East Tennessee State University, 2012

Post-doctoral Fellowship: Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, 2014

Phani Veeranki, MBBS, DrPH is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health. Dr. Veeranki's research is focused around understanding "The early origins of disease" with focus on the prevention and control of chronic diseases. He incorporates epidemiologic modeling and statistical skills in identifying novel risk factors for atopic and pulmonary diseases in children and young adults, and for cognitive impairment in older adults. His expertise is in cohort and clinical trial design development, maternal, child and adolescent health, pediatric and pharmacoepidemiology, health outcomes research and global health.

 

Stephen B. WilliamsStephen B. Williams, M.D.
Assistant Professor in Urology, Tenure-Track
Robert Earl Cone Professorship
Director of Urologic Oncology
Director of Urologic Research
Co-Director Department of Surgery Clinical Outcomes Research Program

Medical School: The George Washington University, Washington, DC

Internship: Harvard Program in Surgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, MA

Residency: Harvard Program in Urology, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, MA

Fellowship: Urologic Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX

Stephen B. Williams, M.D. is Assistant Professor in the Division of Urology in the Department of Surgery. He is also Co-Director of the Department of Surgery Clinical Outcomes Research Program. Dr. Williams has expertise in health services research. His seminal research in comparative effectiveness regarding prostate cancer treatments has fueled his more recent interest in regards to discerning bladder cancer treatment patterns and optimizing outcomes. His research has been presented at the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (previously known as the Institute of Medicine). He was named the Comparative Effectiveness in Research on Cancer in Texas (CERCIT) Scholar and his work will help pave the way for further understanding and optimizing the care we deliver to these patients.


Barbara H. PetitBarbara H. Petit
Senior Administrator
Department of Surgery

B.A.: University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky

Masters: University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky

Since her arrival in 1998 as Department Administrator for the Department of Surgery at The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, Barbara Petit has worked with the chairman and division chiefs to identify, develop, and implement tactical and strategic departmental business plans in support of the institutional mission. She assumed administrative responsibility for the Division of Emergency Medicine in August 2002. In October 2008, Mrs. Petit was appointed Administrator for Surgery, Emergency Medicine, Pathology, the Center for Biodefense and Emerging Infectious Diseases, the Willed Body Program, and the Comprehensive Cancer Center. Mrs. Petit has over 24 years of experience in health care administration. She served as Department Administrator for the Department of Surgery at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, Kentucky from 1986-1998 and as Business Manager for the Department of Family Practice at the University of Kentucky from 1984-1986. She has represented the School of Medicine on many institutional committees and the University on UT System Insurance Advisory Committee. She has held several positions in the Association of Academic Surgical Administrators including Southern Regional Representative, Membership Chair, and President.

 

Yong-Fang Kuo, Ph.D.Yong-Fang Kuo, Ph.D.
Professor, Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health and Department of Internal Medicine
Director, Office of Biostatistics and Office of Biostatistics at the Sealy Center on Aging

B.S.: Taipei Medical College, Taipei, Taiwan (Nursing) 1984

M.Ed.: National Taiwan Normal University, Taipei, Taiwan (Health Education) 1986

M.A.S.: The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH (Applied Statistics) 1994

Ph.D.: The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH (Biostatistics) 1997

Yong-Fang Kuo, R.N., Ph.D. is the Director of Biostatistics at the Sealy Center on Aging and Associate Professor in the Department of Internal Medicine. Dr. Kuo has more than 14 years' experience analyzing health administrative data. Through collaboration with multiple clinicians, she has more than 40 publications based on large administrative data and about 30 of them focused on cancer care. Dr. Kuo has extensive experience in the use of hierarchical generalized linear models (HGLM) to evaluate provider-specific variation in receipt of care. One example of her use of this methodology was to determine use of androgen-deprivation therapy for prostate cancer at the level of the urologist and patient.

 

Yong-Fang Kuo, Ph.D.Alai Tan, M.D., Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Institute of Translational Sciences and the
Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health

M.D.: Tongji Medical University, Wuhan, P.R.China

M.S.: Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, Texas

Ph.D.: Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, Texas

Dr. Tan is an Assistant Professor in the Institute of Translational Sciences and the Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health, UTMB. She received medical training from Tongji Medical University, Wuhan, P.R.China in 1994 and then took a position as a resident in Beijing You'An Hospital, China. Dr. Tan earned a Master's in Biostatistics in 2002 and PhD in Clinical Science (Health Services Track) in 2004 from the Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health at UTMB. She has been providing statistical support in collaborative researches in UTMB since 2005. Her research focuses on population-based health services research using large national health databases, especially in methodology. Currently, Dr. Tan is the director of the Comparative Effectiveness Key Resources of the CTSA at UTMB.

 

 

Deepak AdhikariDeepak Adhikari
Biostatistician
Department of Surgery

Bachelor of Science: Agriculture, Tribhuvan University, Nepal

Masters of Science: Soil Microbiology, University of Delaware, Newark, Delaware

Masters of Science: Biostatistics, University of Texas Health Science Center, Houston, Texas

Deepak Adhikari is a biostatistician in the UTMB Department of Surgery with Dr. Taylor Riall. As a biostatistician, his primary responsibilities involve study design, data management, data quality control, statistical analyses and manuscript preparation.

 

 

Wei ZhangWei Zhang
Biostatistician
Division of Pulmonary Critical Care & Sleep Medicine

B.S.: Automation, Northeastern University, China

M.S.: Software Engineering, Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications, China

M.S.: Statistics, University of New Orleans, Louisiana

Wei Zhang serves as the Biostatistician for UTMB's Division of Pulmonary Critical Care & Sleep Medicine. He provides statistical support to faculty, students and staff, including data management, study design, statistical analysis, and participation in manuscript preparation.

 

Jie Zhou
Biostatistician
Sealy Center on Aging

B.S.: Biomedical Engineering, Southeast University, Nanjing, China

M.S.: Biomedical Engineering, Southeast University, Nanjing, China

M.S.: Department of Mathematics (Applied Statistics), University of New Orleans, New Orleans, Louisiana

Ph.D.: Department of Mathematics (Statistics), University of New Orleans, New Orleans, Louisiana

Jie Zhou is a Biostatistician for the Sealy Center on Aging, and provides statistical support including data quality control and management, analysis of the data, and participation in manuscript preparation.

 

Francesca DimouFrancesca M. Dimou, M.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Center for Comparative Effectiveness and Cancer Outcomes

B.S.: Stetson University, DeLand, Florida (2006)

M.S.: University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida (2007)

M.D.: University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida (2011)

Residency: University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida (2018)

Francesca M. Dimou, M.D. is a part of a NIH-funded T-32 grant for Surgical Research Training in Gastrointestinal Diseases at the University of Texas Medical Branch. She is currently doing clinical outcomes research with Dr. Taylor Riall while working toward her Master's Degree in Clinical Science through the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. Francesca has a special interest in hepatobiliary disease and plans to pursue a fellowship in surgical oncology.

 

Figaro L. LorestoFigaro L. Loresto, RN, BSN
Graduate Student

B.S.: Mathematics and Nursing at Bob Jones University, Greenville, South Carolina

Figaro L. Loresto, RN, BSN received a B.S. in Mathematics and B.S. in Nursing at Bob Jones University. He is a registered nurse in Texas with experience as a clinician in the emergency room. As a graduate student currently funded by the T32 training grant, his research interests include comparative effectiveness studies, network analysis, and data mining.

 

 

 

Steve SchuenkeSteve Schuenke
Graphic Artist
Department of Surgery

B.A.: Texas Lutheran University, Seguin, Texas

Steve Schuenke has more than 20 years experience as a graphic artist and photographer at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston. He assists wth Center for Comparative Effectiveness and Cancer Outcomes with publications projects and this web site.

 

 

 

Associated Members

 

Jacques G. Baillargeon Ph.D.Jacques G. Baillargeon, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health
Director Community Health Services Division of Epidemiology

B.A.: University of Texas, Austin, English

Ph.D.: University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, Epidemiology

Post Doc Fellowship: University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, Clinical Epidemiology

After joining the faculty of the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, Dr. Baillargeon returned to UTMB in September of 2006. His research interests include correctional health care, HIV, psychiatric epidemiology, cancer epidemiology, and epidemiologic methods. He is also the recipient of numerous research grants, including awards from the National Institutes of Health and the National Institute of Justice.

 

Daniel JupiterDaniel Jupiter, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health

Hon. B.Sc.: Mathematics, University of Toronto, 1997

Ph.D.: Mathematics, University of Michigan, 2003

Before coming to UTMB, Dr. Jupiter worked within the Surgery Department at Scott & White Hospital in Temple, Texas, collaborating with podiatrists, orthopedic surgeons, general surgeons, pathologists, and others on clinical research projects, using both chart review and administrative databases. Here he was cross-appointed as an Assistant/Associate Professor in the Surgery Department of the Texas A&M College of Medicine. Prior to this, he was a Postdoctoral Research Assistant in the lab of Dr. Vincent VanBuren in the Systems Biology and Translational Medicine Department within the Texas A&M College of Medicine. The focus of the lab was computational biology and bioinformatics. Before this, upon obtaining his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan, Dr. Jupiter was a Visiting Assistant Professor in the Mathematics Department at Texas A&M University, studying topics in pure mathematics.

 

Gulshan Sharma, M.D., MPHGulshan Sharma, M.D., MPH
Health Services Researcher
Sealy & Smith Distinguished Chair in Internal Medicine
Professor and Director, Division of Pulmonary Critical Care and Sleep Medicine
Department of Internal Medicine
Associate Chief Medical Officer

Medical School: Dayanand Medical College, India

Residency: Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit, MI

Fellowship: Yale University, New Haven, CT

Dr. Sharma is a professor of medicine and a senior fellow in Sealy Center on Aging. His research interest includes health care utilization and ICU outcomes. He is a recipient of K-08 Mentored Career Development Award from the NIH (08/01/2008-07/31/2013). Using Medicare and SEER-Medicare data he is examining the role of provider continuity on chronic disease outcomes and end of life ICU use. His recent work is supported by UT System Health IT and Systems engineering grant. Dr Sharma is the Associate Chief Medical Officer of the UTMB Health System. In this role he oversees the implementation of evidence based ordersets in the EMR, pilot programs on bundle payments and institution readiness for population management. He serves as an Editor-in-Chief for the journal Core Evidence. His work is published in journals such as The New England Journal of Medicine, Journal of American Medical Association, and The Archives of Internal Medicine. His clinical interests are in sepsis, adult respiratory distress syndrome, COPD, and pneumonia. He is member in the American College of Chest Physicians and the American Thoracic Society. He serves as a Program Director for the pulmonary and critical care fellowship program.

 

Dong Zhang, Ph.D.Dong Zhang, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Preventive Medicine and Community Health
Internal Medicine-Geriatrics/Sealy Center on Aging
Director, Data Management System for Medical Research (DMSMED)

B.S.: Physics, South China Normal University, China

M.B.A.: Finance, University of St. Thomas, Houston

M.S.: Biometry, School of Public Health, University of Texas, Houston

Ph.D.: Biometry, School of Public Health, University of Texas, Houston

Dong Zhang, Ph.D. is a biostatistician who has collaborated on health services research projects at UTMB since 1994. Dr. Zhang currently works with multidisciplinary teams of investigators conducting population based health services research with large health care datasets. As a member of these teams, he provides essential support in statistical methods, healthcare informatics, and data analysis. He has been a co-investigator on more than eight NIH or state funded grants and co-author on many peer reviewed articles.

Dr. Zhang has extensive experience with Medicare claims data and its use in studies of cancer diagnosis, treatment and outcomes. He designed and maintains a shared Data Management System for Medical Research (DMSMED) to support UTMB investigators in research using these large health care data. Dr. Zhang also facilitates a training environment with a research-oriented interdisciplinary educational program at the pre-doctoral, post-doctoral and junior faculty levels. The training/dissemination program, along with advanced quantitative support, provides critical support to investigators who are interested in research using very large and complex health care databases.

 

Past Fellows

 

Nina TamirisaNina P. Tamirisa, M.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Center for Comparative Effectiveness and Cancer Outcomes

B.A: University of Texas at Austin Plan II Honors Program (2006)

M.D.: University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (2010)

Residency: University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, Texas (2018)

Nina P. Tamirisa, M.D.was a Research Fellow at the University of Texas Medical Branch. She did clinical outcomes research with Dr. Taylor Riall while working toward her Master's Degree in Clinical Science through the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. Her research focused on patient centered outcomes research and was part of the initiative to evaluate shared decision making in cancer care with the Multidisciplinary Translational Team at UTMB. She plans to pursue a fellowship in surgical onocology.

 

Amanpal Singh, M.D., MSAmanpal Singh, M.D., MS
Postdoctoral Fellow
Center for Comparative Effectiveness and Cancer Outcomes

Medical School: All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi, India

M.S. (Epidemiology): Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA

Residency: Internal Medicine, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX

Amanpal Singh was a fellow in Gastroenterology at the University of Texas Medical Branch. He worked with Dr. Goodwin to study the utilization patterns of colonoscopy and its effectiveness in the state of Texas and overall in the United States. He is interested in the prevention and patterns of care of gastrointestinal cancers.

 

Casey DuncanCasey B. Duncan, M.D., MS
Postdoctoral Fellow
Center for Comparative Effectiveness and Cancer Outcomes

B.S.: University of Illlinois, Urbana, Illinois (2004)

M.D.: The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Columbus, Ohio (2008)

Residency: University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, Texas (2015)

Casey B. Duncan, M.D. was a general surgery resident at the University of Texas-Medical Branch. She did clinical outcomes research with Dr. Taylor Riall under her T32 grant, while working toward her Master's Degree in Clinical Science through the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. She is hoping to pursue a career in Surgical Oncology.

 

Jaime Benarroch GampelJaime Benarroch Gampel, M.D., MS
Postdoctoral Fellow
Center for Comparative Effectiveness and Cancer Outcomes

M.D.: Universidad Del Zulia, Maracaibo, Venezuela

Jaime Benarroch-Gampel, M.D. was a general surgery resident at the University of Texas Medical Branch, graduating in 2014. He did clinical outcomes research with Dr. Taylor Riall while working toward his Master's Degree in Population Health Sciences. He has special interest in cancer patterns and outcomes. Jaime was awarded with first place in the clinical research competition during the 58th meeting of the Singleton Surgical Society.

 

 

 

Amanpal Singh, M.D., MSAbhishek D. Parmar, M.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Center for Comparative Effectiveness and Cancer Outcomes

B.A: Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia (2004)

M.D.: University of Alabama, Birmingham, Alabama (2008)

Residency: University of California, San Francisco-East Bay, Oakland, CA (2016)

Abhishek D. Parmar, M.D.was part of a NIH funded T-32 Gastrointestinal Research Fellowship at the University of Texas Medical Branch. He did clinical outcomes research with Dr. Taylor Riall while working toward his Master's Degree in Clinical Science through the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. He was also a Comparative Effectiveness Research on Cancer in Texas (CERCIT) scholar, an initiative that is part of a multi-institutional CPRIT grant that serves to train faculty and residents in comparative effectiveness research. Abhishek has a special interest in hepatobiliary disease and is planning on pursuing a career in surgical oncology.

 

Amanpal Singh, M.D., MSGabriela M. Vargas, M.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow
Center for Comparative Effectiveness and Cancer Outcomes

B.A.: University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah (2002)

M.D.: University of Utah School of Medicine, Salt Lake City, Utah (2006)

Residency: University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah (2012)

Gabriela M. Vargas, M.D., was an instructor in the Department of Surgery at the University of Texas Medical Branch. She was a Comparative Effectiveness Research on Cancer in Texas scholar and did clinical outcomes research on colorectal cancer with Dr. Taylor Riall while working toward her Master's Degree in Clinical Science through the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. She has plans to pursue further training in colorectal surgery.