2018 Institute on Health Services Research

Quality Strategies in Rehabilitation: Advancing Health Services Research

Co-sponsored by CoHSTAR & the Center for Large Data Research & Data Sharing in Rehabilitation (CLDR)

“Building scientific capacity to advance the practice of rehabilitation science will only be achieved with extensive collaboration between institutions and across research disciplines.”Ken Ottenbacher, PhD, OTR, CLDR Program Director

“I am particularly excited that this year’s HSR Institute will bring together colleagues from across the rehabilitation disciplines to focus on research strategies to evaluate and improve quality of care. This will be a unique opportunity for attendees to learn about quality initiatives from nationally known thought leaders, deepen their understanding of health services research methods, and develop collegial relationships both within and across disciplinary boundaries.” Linda Resnik, PT, PhD, FAPTA, CoHSTAR Director 

Wednesday, April 4, 2018 (evening only)
Thursday, April 5, 2018 (full day)
Boston University

Don’t miss this groundbreaking collaboration! CoHSTAR is pleased to announce that for our third health services research institute, we will be partnering with the CLDR. The Institute will focus on advancing health services research and quality strategies. Quality goals and outcomes have important implications for health services research in rehabilitation.

Join us in Boston this spring for this exciting partnership between CoHSTAR and the CLDR!

April 4. 2018
6:30 – 8:00 PM Reception and Posters
April 5, 2018
7:30 – 8:45 AM Registration and Breakfast
8:45 – 9:00 AM Welcome Linda Resnik and Ken Ottenbacher
9:00 – 9:45 AM HSR and ‘Smart Clinicians’ in Value-based Health Care Gerben DeJong
9:45 – 10:30 AM What is quality of care in rehabilitation? Johanna Bellon
10:30 – 10:45 AM Break
10:45 – 12:00 Panel Discussion: Quality Metrics and Reporting Chair: Vince Mor

Amy Leibensberger

Anne Deutsch

12:00 – 1:30 Lunch
Afternoon Workshops
1:30 – 2:30 Session A: Approaches for Addressing Quality in Rehabilitation Natalie Leland
Session B: Methodological Issues: Measurement across settings Ken Ottenbacher

Pedro Gozalo

2:30 – 2:45 Break
2:45 – 3:45 Session C: Measuring rehabilitation therapy inputs Janet Freburger
Session D: Methodological Issues: Selection, Causal inference and Endogeneity Theresa Shireman
4:00 – 5:00 Panel –  Future Directions Gerben DeJong, Linda Resnik, Ken Ottenbacher, Tony Delitto

Kenneth J. Ottenbacher, PhD, OTR, CLDR Program Director

Kenneth J. Ottenbacher holds the Russell Shearn Moody Distinguished Chair in Neurological Rehabilitation at the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB). He is Professor and Director of the Division of Rehabilitation Sciences in the School of Health Professions. He is also Director of the Center for Recovery, Physical Activity and Nutrition, and Associate Director for the Sealy Center on Aging. Dr. Ottenbacher received his PhD from the University of Missouri-Columbia and is a licensed occupational therapist.

Dr. Ottenbacher’s current research involves using large datasets to study rehabilitation outcomes with a focus on functional assessment, disability and frailty in older adults. Dr. Ottenbacher has published more than 350 articles in refereed journals and has received continuous federal funding as principal investigator to support his research and training activities since 1984. He is currently the principal investigator or core leader on seven grants totaling more than $15 million dollars.

Dr. Ottenbacher has been the recipient of numerous awards for his research, mentoring and service activities. He is a recipient of the Gold Key Award from the American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine and is a charter member of the American Occupational Therapy Foundation Academy of Research.  Dr. Ottenbacher is a fellow in the American Occupational Therapy Association, the American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine, and the Gerontological Society of America (Health Sciences Division). He was also recently appointed to the National Advisory Board on Medical Rehabilitation Research.

Linda Resnik, PT, PhD, CoHSTAR Director 

Linda Resnik, PT, PhD, FAPTA, is the Director of the Center on Health Services Training and Research. She is currently Professor in the Department of Health Services, Policy and Practice in the Brown University School of Public Health and VA RR&D funded Research Career Scientist at the Providence VA Medical Center. Dr. Resnik is a Catherine Worthingham Fellow of the American Physical Therapy Association and the 2017 recipient of the VA RR&D Magnuson Award. Shas been funded by VA HSR&D, VA RR&D, NIA, NICHD, NIDRR, DoD, the Foundation for Physical and the RI Foundation for research studies totaling over 25 million dollars and is the author of 86 peer-reviewed publications.

Gerben DeJong, PhD, FACRM

Senior Fellow for Health Policy & Post-acute Care, MedStar National Rehabilitation Network, Washington, DC

Professor, Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Georgetown University School of Medicine

Gerben DeJong, PhD, FACRM is a Senior Fellow for Health Policy & Post-acute Care at the MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital (NRH).  Dr. DeJong serves as Professor in the Department of Rehabilitation Medicine at the Georgetown University School of Medicine in Washington, DC.  He is also a Senior Partner with DeltaMed Partners, LLC, a health facility development and analysis firm based in Naples, FL and doing work in emerging health care markets in Asia.  Prior to rejoining MedStar NRH in late 2004, Dr. DeJong served a 2-year stint with the University of Florida as a professor in the Department of Health Services Research, Management & Policy. Previously until 2001, Dr. DeJong served for 16 years (1985-2001) as MedStar NRH’s founding Director of Research.  Dr. DeJong has conducted several large multi-center clinical and health outcome studies.  He is the author or co-author of more than 250 papers on health policy, health care financing, post-acute care, and health outcomes. For more than 30 years, Dr. DeJong has tracked American post-acute health care system and its publicly traded companies, especially their growth, development, and consolidation.  He is also an avid student of health care reform and has lectured widely on the topic.  In 2006-07, Dr. DeJong served as President of the American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine.  He is the recipient of many awards and is a frequently invited speaker both in the United States and abroad. In 1984, he was a Fulbright Scholar in the Netherlands.  In 2013, Dr. DeJong was the William Evans Visiting Fellow with the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery & Musculoskeletal Medicine at University of Otago and the Burwood Academy in Christchurch, New Zealand.

Johanna Bellon, PhD, MS, CFA

Johanna Bellon is the Senior Director of Quality Analytics and Performance at the UPMC Wolff Center. UPMC is a 40+ hospital integrated finance and delivery system with over 3,500 providers and a multitude of clinical sites, including inpatient rehabilitation facilities, skilled nursing facilities, an extensive home health agency network, and a comprehensive outpatient rehabilitation network. In her role at the Wolff Center, UPMC’s corporate quality group, she oversees 60 professionals responsible for data and analytics for CMS hospital and physician quality programs, private payer quality programs, and internal reporting and analysis for quality improvement across all facilities and services lines. Prior to joining UPMC, Johanna worked in investment analysis, underwriting, and portfolio management at GE Capital and in management and turnaround consulting at Alvarez and Marsal’s Healthcare Industry Group. While pursuing her PhD, she worked at the University of Pittsburgh Health Policy Institute. She received her PhD in Health Services Research and Policy from the University of Pittsburgh and her MS in Global Financial Analysis from Bentley University.

Vincent Mor, Ph.D.

Dr. Vincent Mor is the Florence Pirce Grant Professor of Community Health in the Brown University School of Public Health and a senior health scientist at the Providence VA Medical Center.  He has been Principal Investigator of over 40 NIH funded grants and published over 400 peer reviewed articles focusing on the use of health services and the outcomes frail and chronically ill persons experience. He received the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation health policy investigator award, a MERIT award from the National Institute on Aging, the Distinguished Investigator Award From AcademyHealth, the John Eisenberg Mentoring Excellence Award from the Agency for Health Care Research and is a member of the National Academy of Medicine. He has evaluated the impact of programs and policies in aging and long term care including Medicare funding of hospice, changes in Medicare nursing home payment and the introduction of quality measures. He was one of the authors of the Congressionally mandated Minimum Data Set (MDS) for Nursing Home Resident Assessment and the architect of an integrated Medicare claims and clinical assessment data base used for policy analysis, pharmaco-epidemiology, population outcome measurement and cluster randomized clinical trials.

Anne Deutsch RN, PhD, CRRN

Anne Deutsch is a as a Senior Research Public Health Analyst at RTI International. She also hold an appointment as a Research Scientist at the Shirly Ryan Abilitylab and a Research Associate Professor at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine. Anne’s research focuses on the development and implementation of quality measures and Medicare post-acute care payment systems. She led the research team that developed the functional status quality measures that are used in the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ Inpatient Rehabilitation Facility Quality Reporting Program, the Long-Term Care Hospital Quality Reporting Program, the Skilled Nursing Facility Quality Reporting Program. She is also involved in research under the Midwest Regional Spinal Cord Injury Model System

Theresa Shireman, PhD, MS 

Theresa Shireman is a health services researcher who specializes in pharmacoepidemiology and health economic evaluations. Significant research achievements include contributions to understanding how medications are used and to what effect in people who are on chronic dialysis, development of a novel methodology to tracking medication exposure over time, development of a bleeding risk prediction model for warfarin in older adult patients with atrial fibrillation, and health economic evaluations of expensive therapeutic agents.  In addition, she has managed numerous contracts with the State Medicaid agencies evaluating pharmaceutical use in children with disabilities and other vulnerable populations, examining the quality of diabetes care for people with disabilities, and creating a claims-based algorithm to distinguish between important subgroups of individuals with disabilities.  She currently has a grant with the National MS Society to examine the role of Medicaid-funded home- and community-based services in reducing other health care costs and delaying nursing home placement; she is also examining the impact of soaring prices for disease-modifying agents in the context of MS on patient health and financial outcomes.  She teaches graduate courses on pharmacoepidemiology, cost-effectiveness analysis, and economics of the pharmaceutical industry, and advises graduate students and clinician researchers.

Janet Freburger, PT, PhD 

Janet Freburger, PT, PhD, is a professor in the Department of Physical Therapy. She has more than15 years of experience as a health services researcher with expertise in pragmatic and observational study designs that capitalize on existing data (i.e., administrative health care claims, electronic health record, registries, and other population-based data). Much of Freburger’s research has focused on improving understanding of access to, appropriate use of, and effectiveness of rehabilitation care.  Freburger currently serves on the Scientific Advisory Panel for the American Physical Therapy Association’s Physical Therapy Outcomes Registry and is a past member of the Editorial Board for Physical Therapy. She has been a principal investigator or coinvestigator on grants/contracts funded by the National Institutes of Health, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute, the Centers for Disease Control, Medicare Payment Advisory Council, the Department of Health and Human Services, the Foundation for Physical Therapy, the American College of Physicians, and the American Physical Therapy Association. She received her PhD in Health Services Organizations and Research from Virginia Commonwealth University, her MS in Physical Therapy and Biomechanics from Virginia

Tony Delitto PhD, FAPTA

Anthony Delitto, PT, PhD is the Co-Director of the Pilot Studies Core at the Center on Health Services Training and Research. Dr. Delitto has over 30 years of experience as a physical therapist and academician. He has 100 peer-reviewed publications and has received almost continuous NIH grant support since 2001, including grants from NIAMS, NINDS, NCMRR and pilot grants from NIA as part of the institution’s Pepper Center Awards. He has served on NIH, AHRQ and NIDRR study sections as both a permanent and ad-hoc memberships. He was a member of the NIH Blue Ribbon Panel for Rehabilitation Research, which convened in 2013 and presently serves on the Advisory Board for the National Center for Medical Rehabilitation Research (NCMRR/NICHD). Dr. Delitto holds numerous leadership positions in the University of Pittsburgh’s health sciences, including the Health Policy Center, the Aging Institute, the CTSA as well as holds positions with the UPMC and the UPMC Health Plan, which should help facilitate implementing pilot research proposals within the UPMC and University of Pittsburgh environment.




The Center on Health Services Training and Research (CoHSTAR) and the Center for Large Data Research and Data Sharing in Rehabilitation (CLDR) are joining forces to co-sponsor a Health Services Research Institute titled Quality Strategies in Rehabilitation: Advancing Health Services Research. The Institute, which will held at Boston University on April 5th, will be preceded by an evening reception and poster session on April 4th. This is a unique opportunity to share your research and engage with Institute faculty and participants.  Submit a poster session abstract and be part of this groundbreaking event!

Successful applicants will receive complimentary 2018 Institute registration.

Abstract Submission Deadline: CLOSED 

Poster Abstract Submission Instructions

Abstracts should focus on health services research and quality initiatives. Include the components listed below (word limit 250):

  • Background
  • Research question
  • Significance/relevance
  • Methods
  • Findings
  • Conclusions

Submission deadline: CLOSED
Notification of acceptance: February 18, 2018 

Email abstract submissions to Allie Cole:
Email subject: LASTNAME, 2018 Abstract

CoHSTAR invites physical therapists engaged in health services research to submit an application to participate in our third annual Health Services Research Intensive Workshop. The Workshop will be held on April 6th, 2018 at Boston University. Accepted participants will attend the Intensive Workshop free-of-charge and are expected to register for and attend the Health Services Research Institute (April 4-5).

Workshop participants will discuss and critique draft research proposals. Participants will have opportunities for one-on-one consultation with CoHSTAR faculty to discuss strategies to advance their research.

Interested investigators are invited to submit an application that includes the following:

  • NIH Biosketch
  • Statement of health services research interests (1 page)
  • Summary describing your specific aims for a draft research proposal (1 page)

Submission deadline: CLOSED
Notification of acceptance: February 18, 2018

Please email application to Allie Cole:
Email Subject: LASTNAME, 2018 Workshop

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Hotel Commonwealth

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