Brent Fulton, Associate Director

Closed (1) Identifying Patients Hospitalized with Infectious Diseases Who are Most Likely to Benefit from an Advanced Diagnostic Test

Closed. This professor is continuing with Fall 2018 apprentices on this project; no new apprentices needed for Spring 2019.

Infectious diseases are a major cause of hospitalizations in the United States, including the following number for these conditions in 2014: septicemia (1,514,085), pneumonia (882,735), meningitis (30,810) and encephalitis (10,930). Isolating the underlying cause of the infection can be challenging, because the infection’s source may be viral, bacterial, parasitic, or fungal. Next-generation DNA sequencing technologies using cerebrospinal fluid can identify the infectious agent. My portion of the study will estimate the cost impact and cost effectiveness of different entry criteria for the next-generation DNA sequencing technology to be used as a diagnostic test for meningitis and encephalitis cases. The cost effectiveness per quality-adjusted life year will be estimated using a decision tree, either deterministically or stochastically, to allow for random components. The overall study is located at UCSF. For more information, see https://www.ucsf.edu/news/2015/08/131341/new-center-will-advance-life-saving-genome-based-diagnostic-tools


The student will search for and summarize existing studies, and depending on skill level, do analyses and create tables and figures using excel.

The student's key learning outcome will be gaining a better understanding on how empirical research is conducted within health economics.

Qualifications: Required skills include the following: strong writing skills, proficiency in searching publication databases (e.g., PubMed, Google Scholar, etc.), proficiency in Microsoft Office. Desirable but not essential skills include the following: background in U.S. healthcare system and health economics (e.g., taken PH150D and/or PH126), Endnote, Excel. Hours per week is 9-12, but would consider 6-9.

Weekly Hours: 9-11 hrs

Closed (2) Examination of Medicare Accountable Care Organizations and Hospitals in Rural Areas

Applications for Spring 2019 are now closed for this project.

This study will leverage unique access to rural accountable care organizations (ACOs) to expand the evidence base on how rural accountable care organizations and their affiliated hospitals impact the healthcare of geographically isolated patients, particularly high-need, high-cost patients. This study contains two aims: first we will investigate the relationship between rural ACOs and the performance of the hospitals in those areas. We will focus on patient outcomes (e.g., ambulatory-care-sensitive admissions and readmission rates) and hospital metrics (e.g., overall financial performance and annual occupancy rates). We will study specific characteristics of the ACOs and hospitals (e.g., size, ownership) that may moderate the relationship between ACOs and hospital financial viability and patient outcomes. As part of this aim, we will conduct analyses on the subpopulation of high need/high cost patients.

The student will search for and summarize existing studies, and depending on skill level, do analyses and create tables and figures using excel.

The student's key learning outcome will be gaining a better understanding on how empirical research is conducted within health economics.

Qualifications: Required skills include the following: strong writing skills, proficiency in searching publication databases (e.g., PubMed, Google Scholar, etc.), proficiency in Microsoft Office. Desirable but not essential skills include the following: background in U.S. healthcare system and health economics (e.g., taken PH150D and/or PH126), Endnote, Excel. Hours per week is 9-12, but would consider 6-9.

Weekly Hours: 9-11 hrs