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Former SMART Platform Exec to Lead VA’s Research Efforts

January 11, 2017
by David Raths
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Rachel B. Ramoni to oversee VA's 2,000 active research projects

Rachel B. Ramoni, D.M.D., Sc.D., former executive director of the Substitutable Medical Applications, Reusable Technologies (SMART) Platforms Project at Harvard Medical School, has been named chief research and development officer (CRADO) for the Veterans Health Administration.

In her new role, Ramoni will oversee VA's nationwide research enterprise, encompassing some 2,000 active projects at more than 100 sites. The program's total budget in fiscal 2016 was $1.8 billion. The figure includes both direct VA support, and research funding from outside entities such as the National Institutes of Health, other federal agencies, and nonprofit and private organizations. She succeeds David Atkins, M.D., who had served as acting CRADO since April 2016.

Ramoni was previously on the faculty at New York University College of Dentistry in the department of epidemiology and health promotion, and at Harvard Medical School in the department of biomedical informatics. Among her research interests are informatics, genomics, and precision medicine.

Her work with colleagues on the SMART platform seeks to make it easier for providers across different health systems to securely share information from electronic health records. The overarching goal is to improve the quality and continuity of care for patients. While at Harvard, Ramoni also founded and led the Undiagnosed Diseases Network Coordinating Center. The UDN, funded by the National Institutes of Health, brings together clinical and research experts from across the U.S. to solve challenging medical mysteries using advanced technologies.

Ramoni has also led research projects aimed at improving dental care nationwide. She worked on implementing standardized diagnostic terms for dentistry, and developing a patient safety system that would help dentists identify and prevent adverse events.

 

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