Chronic Pain and Opioids

  • Program Lead: John Muench, MD, MPH
  • Program Manager: April Lee, MPH
  • This program area strives to generate knowledge that will help clinics treat patients with chronic pain and/or opioid addiction. Research is focused on opioid prescription, alternative approaches to pain management, addiction management and treatment in primary care, and issues related to trauma and resilience for patients.

Diseases Affecting the Safety Net

  • Program Lead: John Heintzman, MD
  • Program Manager: TBD
  • This program area identifies and encourages research on topics related to diseases that commonly affect the safety net population. Research is focused on conditions such as, but not limited to, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, common types of pulmonary disease, cancer, obesity, mental health conditions, and common infections.

Health Disparities

  • Program Lead: Lewis Raynor, PhD, MS, MPH
  • Program Manager: MJ Dunne, MA
  • This program area examines health disparities experienced by vulnerable populations. Research is focused on improving healthcare access and utilization for racial and ethnic minorities, sexual and gender minorities, immigrants, migrant workers, refugees, people experiencing homelessness or housing insecurity, and the incarcerated.

Health Policy

  • Program Lead: Jennifer DeVoe, PhD, DPhil & Nathalie Huguet, PhD
  • Program Manager: Ashley Kroll, JD, MPH
  • This program area supports development and research in the field of health care policy. Research is focused on health outcomes and utilization of preventive services before and after the introduction of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in Medicaid expansion and non-expansion states.


  • Program Lead: Jon Puro, MPA/HA
  • Program Manager: Sophia Giebultowicz, MA
  • This program area strives to ensure that OCHIN is the national lead in hosting rich, comprehensive, and accessible safety-net population data in support of rigorous clinical and health services research. This program supports projects and proposals that utilize informatics; develops and maintains the ADVANCE research data warehouse for prep-to-research and funded studies; and builds Community Vital Signs (CVS) data infrastructure, develops capacity for utilizing CVS data, and makes these data available for research.

Practice Transformation

  • Program Lead: Rachel Gold, PhD, MPH
  • Program Manager: Aleksandra Sumic, MPH
  • This program area examines how Community Health Centers (CHCs) can improve individual patient and population health by improving care processes, workflows, and the adoption of evidence-based care, using effective implementation strategies. Research is focused on how to build and optimize EHR and other tools (e.g. clinical decision support tools) to support CHCs targeted interventions and goals, as well as help CHCs implement these tools.

Reproductive and Family Health

  • Program Lead: Brigit Hatch, MD, MPH
  • Program Manager: Molly Krancari, MA, MPH
  • This program area strives to lead and support national research regarding women, children, and families. Research is focused on understanding and improving the health of women, children, and families.

Social Determinants of Health

  • Program Lead: Erika Cottrell, PhD, MPP
  • Program Manager: Katie Dambrun, MPH
  • This program area focuses on patient reported and/or community-level social determinants of health data. Research is focused on how clinics can use social determinants of health information about their patients at the point-of-care and for population management to better understand their patients and to ultimately provide more-informed care.