Press Release

GAO Makes New Appointments to the PCORI Methodology Committee and Health IT Policy Committee

WASHINGTON, DC (May 4, 2015) - Gene L. Dodaro, Comptroller General of the United States and head of the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO), today announced the appointment of new members to two health care entities — the Methodology Committee of the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) and the Health Information Technology (HIT) Policy Committee.

PCORI Methodology Committee

The Methodology Committee assists PCORI in developing and updating methodological standards and guidance for comparative clinical effectiveness research. The new appointee to the Methodology Committee is Adam Wilcox, PhD, Director of Medical Informatics at Intermountain Healthcare in Salt Lake City, Utah. 

“We interviewed and considered a number of impressive applicants, and I am delighted to name the exceptionally well-qualified Dr. Wilcox to a position on the Committee,” Dodaro said.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act authorized PCORI as a non-profit corporation to assist patients, clinicians, purchasers, and policymakers in making informed health decisions by providing quality, relevant evidence on how best to prevent, diagnose, treat, and monitor diseases and other health conditions.

The Act directs the Comptroller General to appoint up to 15 members to PCORI’s Methodology Committee. In addition, the Director of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and the Director of the National Institutes of Health, or their designees, also serve on the committee.

A brief biography of the appointee is provided below:

Adam Wilcox, PhD, is Director of Medical Informatics at Intermountain Healthcare in Salt Lake City, Utah, where he leads clinical decision support activities and efforts in using health information technology to support primary care and integrated care management.  Dr. Wilcox’s previous positions include Associate Professor in the Department of Biomedical Informatics at Columbia University and Director of Clinical Databases at New York Presbyterian Hospital, where he was the initial principal investigator for the Washington Heights/Inwood Informatics Infrastructure for Comparative Effectiveness Research Project.  He also directed the clinical data warehouse, the clinical data repository, the legacy electronic health record, and a local health information exchange.  Dr. Wilcox holds his PhD in Medical Informatics from Columbia University.

HIT Policy Committee

The new appointees to the HIT Policy Committee include: Kathleen Blake, MD, MPH, who will fill the position of an expert in health care quality measurement and reporting; Donna Cryer, JD, who will fill the position of an advocate for patients or consumers; and Brent Snyder, Esq., who will fill the position of a representative of health care providers.

“Crafting sound health information technology policy depends on having the views of key stakeholders, such as consumers and health care providers, and being able to draw on expertise in such areas as health care quality,” Dodaro said. “Once again, GAO had an exceptionally strong group of candidates to choose from, and it is a pleasure to announce today’s appointees.”

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 established the HIT Policy Committee and gave the Comptroller General responsibility for appointing 13 of its 20 members. The HIT Policy Committee makes recommendations to the National Coordinator for Health IT on the development and adoption of a nationwide health information infrastructure, including standards for the exchange of patient medical information.

Brief biographies of the appointees are provided below:

Kathleen Blake, MD, MPH, is Vice President for Performance Improvement at the American Medical Association (AMA) and resides in Chicago, Illinois, and Santa Fe, New Mexico. She oversees the AMA’s clinical quality initiatives and the development and testing of electronic clinical quality measures. Dr. Blake also serves as the Executive Director of the Physician Consortium for Performance Improvement and has executive responsibility for the National Quality Registry Network. She is also Assistant Professor of Medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. She holds her medical degree from Pritzker School of Medicine at the University of Chicago and her MPH from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Donna Cryer, JD, is Founder and President of the Global Liver Institute in Washington, D.C., which facilitates collaboration among patient advocates, policymakers, regulators, health systems, and payors to solve challenges to advancing liver health and treating liver diseases. Ms. Cryer is a liver-transplant recipient and lives with multiple serious chronic conditions. She serves on the boards of the Society for Participatory Medicine and the Personalized Medicine Coalition and is a member of the NIH Learning Health System Stakeholder Advisory Group. She has served on the HIT Privacy and Security Workgroup and is a member of the HIT Patient Generated Health Data Technical Advisory Panel. She obtained her A.B. from Harvard and her law degree from Georgetown University Law Center.

Brent Snyder, Esq., is Chief Information Officer at Adventist Health System (AHS) and lives in Springfield, Tennessee. AHS, based in Orlando, Florida, is a national health system with 45 hospitals in 10 states. Mr. Snyder is a member of the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives and is a fellow of the Healthcare Financial Management Association. He also participates in the Scottsdale Institute. Prior positions within AHS include Chief Financial Officer of the Multistate Hospital Division, the Tennessee/Georgia Region, and Chief Financial Officer for Tennessee Christian Medical Center. Mr. Snyder holds his Doctor of Jurisprudence from the Nashville School of Law and a Master of Science in Business from the University of South Carolina.

For more information, contact Mary Giffin on GAO's Health Care team at (202) 512-7114 or Chuck Young in GAO's Office of Public Affairs at (202) 512-4800, or visit the GAO Health Care Advisory Committees web page at http://www.gao.gov/about/hcac/index.html.

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