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Regenstrief Institute Appoints New CEO to Drive Health Equity Research

Rachel E. Patzer, PhD, MPH, an epidemiology and health equity research expert, will officially begin her new role as CEO of the Regenstrief Institute on May 1.

Indiana University School of Medicine has appointed a nationally-recognized expert in epidemiology and health equity research to serve as the new president and chief executive officer of the Regenstrief Institute Inc.

Rachel E. Patzer, PhD, MPH, is currently the director of the Health Services Research Center at the Emory University School of Medicine and a tenured professor in the Department of Surgery.

Patzer has spent her career leading efforts to boost access to healthcare and improve the quality of care delivery with a focus on health equity.

In 2018, she founded the Health Services Research Center, a cooperative initiative of the departments of medicine and surgery at Emory. The center aims to foster opportunities for closer connections and collaboration between methodologists and clinical researchers to advance healthcare access and improve care outcomes.

Patzer’s career finding innovative ways to collect and utilize data for solving complex health challenges strongly supports the mission of the Regenstrief Institute, according to Jay L. Hess, MD, PhD, MHSA, IU School of Medicine Dean.

“Over the course of her career, Dr. Patzer’s work in using data to expose inequities and inefficiencies in health systems aligns perfectly with the important work being done by our world-class researchers at the Regenstrief Institute,”  Hess noted in a press release.

“It is a critical time in our community for healthcare research, and I am confident that Dr. Patzer is the transformative leader needed to take the Regenstrief Institute into the future,” Hess said.

Patzer will officially begin her new role on May 1.

“I am excited to work with the internationally renowned Regenstrief investigators in biomedical informatics, aging, and health services research, who are leading the way in using data – from an ever-increasing number and types of sources to improve health,” Patzer said.

“We as a society invest in healthcare research with an expectation of the benefits we gain from it,” she emphasized. “I believe that we can leverage the impressive strengths of the Regenstrief Institute to attain even more value from these data and accelerate the translation of this research into practice to improve not only healthcare, but ultimately the health of patients and populations.”

Patzer will also serve as the Leonard Betley Chair and hold a faculty appointment as a professor with the IU School of Medicine Department of Surgery, as well as joint appointments with the Department of Medicine and with the IU Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health.

“The mission of both the Regenstrief Institute and the Regenstrief Foundation is to improve systems of care to address inequities in health,” said D. Craig Brater, MD, IU School of Medicine Dean Emeritus, and chair of the Regenstrief Institute Board of Directors.”

“Many scholars have documented these inequities; only a handful have performed research that has resulted in actionable and scalable interventions,” said Brater, who also serves as Regenstrief Foundation Board president and CEO. “Dr. Patzer is among that handful. We are delighted that she has joined the Regenstrief Institute to further our ability to provide equitable care for all.”

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