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Distinguished Professor Outlines Research to Improve Health Care

Contact: Karl Luntta (518) 437-4980

ALBANY, N.Y. (April 28, 2004) -- Edward L. Hannan will present "Using Outcomes Research to Assess and Improve the Quality of Health Care" at the annual University at Albany Distinguished Professor Lecture series. The lecture, free and open to the public, is Friday, April 30, 2004, 2 p.m. at the Edward and Frances Gildea George Education Center at the UAlbany School of Public Health, East Campus, Rensselaer.

Hannan, who received the University's highest honor of Distinguished Professor in 2003, is acclaimed for bringing evidence-based medicine to the attention of practicing clinicians, and is a leading expert in the country on health care quality and outcomes. His work has led to tangibly better outcomes of care for those undergoing cardiovascular diagnosis and treatment because of his unique mathematical and methodological skills. While attracting external funding that exceeds $2.6 million annually, he is widely known as excellent teacher with a strong service record whose courses are highly sought after by graduate students. Hannan is also known for mentoring students, and teaching them how to read the literature in medicine and healthcare delivery.

In his letter nominating Hannan for a Distinguished Professorship, School of Public Health Dean Peter Levin wrote that Hannan "…was one of the first investigators to demonstrate the inverse relationship that exists between volume and outcome as they relate to specific surgical procedures, both cardiac and non-cardiac, as well as to cardiac interventions. Thus, he proved that safer surgery and fewer complications from high-risk cardiovascular procedures occur in those institutions where physicians perform a higher volume of these complex procedures. More recently, he designed the methodology for and co-authored a Journal of the American Medical Association article, ‘Mortality in Medicare Beneficiaries Following Coronary Artery By-Pass Graft Surgery in States with and without Certificate of Need Regulation.’ His discovery documents, for the first time, that states which regulate the number of hospitals allowed to perform cardiac surgery, and thus have greater numbers of cases per hospital, also have better outcomes.”

For the last several years, Dr. Hannan has developed the use of clinical and administrative databases for cardiac surgery, angioplasty, trauma care, carotid endarterectomy, cancer and hip fractures. His databases have been used to identify risk factors related to mortality and complications, to predict the occurrence of these adverse events, and to assess provider performance. Articles describing this work have appeared in The Journal of the American Medical Association, The New England Journal of Medicine, Medical Care, The Annals of Thoracic Surgery, The Journal of Trauma, Health Services Research, The Journal of the American College of Cardiology, and numerous other journals. He has been appointed a full fellow of the American College of Cardiology, a rare honor for a non-physician.

Professor Hannan, who chairs the Department of Health Policy, Management and Behavior in the School of Public Health and is on the faculty of the Department of Public Administration and Policy in the Rockefeller College of Public Affairs, earned his Ph.D. in industrial engineering and operations research from the University of Massachusetts.

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