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DPOP Digest: February 2015



Volume 5, Issue 1

From Chair Betsy Sleath

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Happy new year! We hope everyone had a happy holiday season. The faulty, staff, and students of DPOP had a wonderful 2014 with many grants and publications reflecting their hard work.

First, we would like to welcome back Sue Blalock, who spent the first half of 2014 on sabbatical at Cornell University and the University of Leeds. We would also like to welcome DPOP alumna Stacie Dusetzina to the division as an assistant professor.

Congratulations to Stacy Bailey and Gang Fang on being awarded a RO1 from the National Institute on Aging for a study on health literacy. Also, congratulations to our newest DPOP alumna, Julie Lauffenburger, who received her PhD in December and is currently completing a postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard.

We are excited to have three new PhD students, Scott Davis, Adam Sage, and Nirosha Mahendraratnam, who joined us this past fall. Also, Dayna Alexander joined us as a postdoctoral research associate in August, Neepa Ray joined us as a senior data analyst in November, and Tania Wilkins joined us as a senior biostatistician and project manager in December. 

Betsy Sleath, PhD
George H. Cocolas Distinguished Professor and Chair
Division of Pharmaceutical Outcomes and Policy

Farley Selected for 2014–2015 AACP Academic Leadership Fellows Program

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Associate Professor Joel Farley, PhD, was selected to participate in the 2014–2015 American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy Academic Leadership Fellows Program. The AACP Academic Leadership Fellows Program is a year-long program designed to develop the nation’s most promising pharmacy faculty for roles as future leaders in academic pharmacy and higher education. The four-session program includes in-depth leadership development, team building, exploration of legislative and public policy issues critical to pharmaceutical and higher education, and self and peer assessments.

Bailey and Fang Receive $1.6 Million RO1 from the National Institute on Aging


S BaileyG FangAssistant Professors Stacy Bailey, PhD, MPH, and Gang Fang, PharmD, PhD, were recently awarded a $1.6 million RO1 from the National Institute on Aging entitled “National Health Literacy Mapping to Inform Health-Care Policy.” This is a four-year study that will provide a health-literacy estimate for every census block group in the United States using predictive modeling. Fang and Bailey will use these estimates to examine the relationship between health literacy and a number of health outcomes by population level via Medicare claims data. They will also investigate the effect of adjusting for health literacy on Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services hospital readmission penalties. The estimates will be publicly available for researchers and practitioners to use to advance the study of health literacy and to identify geographic areas in need of health-literacy-informed interventions.


Lauffenburger Wins ICPE Abstract Award

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DPOP Alum Dinner at the 2014 ICPE Meeting in Taipei, Taiwan From left to right: Patrick Ryan, Stacie Dusetzina, Julie Lauffenburger, Emma Wang, Alvin Wu (Post-Doc in DPOP), Hisham Aljadhey

DPOP graduate student Julie Lauffenburger received an award from the International Society for Pharmacoepidemiology for the third-best abstract submitted by a student for presentation at the Thirtieth International Conference on Pharmacoepidemiology and Therapeutic Risk Management. The meeting was held in Taipei, Taiwan, October 24–27, 2014. The award included a complimentary registration to ICPE 2014, admission to all pre-ICPE courses, a certificate of recognition, and membership in ISPE through June 30, 2015.

New Faces and New Places

DPOP would like to congratulate our most recent graduate and wish her good luck!

While we say goodbye to our recent graduate we would like to welcome several new students and staff members.

The division would like to welcome three new students to its graduate program.

The division would also like to welcome three new staff members.


Alumni Spotlight


Stacie DusetzinaStacie Dusetzina earned her PhD from DPOP in 2010 and returned to the division in August 2014 as an assistant professor with a joint appointment in the Department of Health Policy and Management in the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health. Before her return to DPOP, she completed a postdoctoral research program at Harvard Medical School in the Department of Health Care Policy and also served as a research assistant professor in the UNC School of Medicine and the Department of Health Policy and Management at the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health.

Dusetzina’s primary area of research is pharmacoepidemiology, and her current research is focused on high cost cancer treatments and the use of specialty pharmaceuticals. In addition to her DPOP research and teaching activities, she is an active member of the UNC Linebarger Cancer Outcomes Research Program. Her main goals there are to better understand how specialty drugs are reimbursed by insurers, how much they cost patients and society, and what can be done to improve access to the most effective treatments. One of her ongoing projects is focused on evaluating the effects of state chemotherapy parity laws on patients' access and use of oral chemotherapy.

According to Dusetzina, her pharmaceutical sciences PhD has set her apart from some of her peers because it allowed her to learn about all aspects of pharmaceuticals — from drug discovery through pharmaceutical reimbursement policies — all of which affect pharmacoepidemiology. Dusetzina says she believes the mentorship she received during her doctoral program at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy was a key to advancing her academic career. Dusetzina says she feels that, although training is important for developing students’ scientific skills, the mentorship and connections provided at UNC are what keep students moving forward. 

Faculty Spotlight


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The beginning of Dr. Blalock’s journey in Ithaca, NY.

Professor Susan Blalock, MPH, PhD, was awarded a six-month Senior Faculty Competitive Research and Scholarly Leave from the University in January 2014 to conduct research on how patients interpret, process, and use information concerning medication risks and benefits when making judgments and decisions involving medication self-management. During her leave Blalock spent time at the Laboratory for Rational Decision Making in the College of Human Ecology at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, and at the the School of Healthcare at the University of Leeds in Leeds, United Kingdom.


While at Cornell, Blalock worked with Valerie Reyna, PhD, a professor of human development and psychology at Cornell University, director of the Human Neuroscience Institute, codirector of the Cornell University Magnetic Resonance Imaging Facility, and codirector of the Center for Behavioral Economics and Decision Research. Reyna is an expert in human judgment and decision making, numeracy and quantitative reasoning, medical decision making, and risk communication. A great deal of Reyna’s work focuses on gaining a better understanding of how intuition can improve decision making and how it can also lead us astray. According to Blalock, by working in Reyna’s lab she was able to develop greater expertise in methodological techniques used to separate biases in reasoning due to sources of error (e.g., lack of knowledge, failure to retrieve relevant knowledge from memory, information processing errors) and modes of decision making (e.g., intuitive, deliberative).


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A collage of pictures from Dr. Blalock’s time in the UK.
At Leeds, Blalock worked with Professor Theo Raynor, a professor of pharmacy practice at the University of Leeds. While working with Raynor, Blalock gained a greater understanding of the rules and regulations governing written materials that accompany prescription medications across the European Union and the way these materials are tested prior to distribution.


During this time, Blalock also submitted a large R01 application to the NIH to study the dissemination and implementation of a falls-prevention program in western North Carolina with co-investigators Reyna and Kate Queen, MD, leader of the Western NC Health Network’s Triple Aim Council Fall Prevention Working Group. Blalock also wrote a paper with Reyna reviewing literature that used Fuzzy-trace theory to examine health-related issues and worked with other members of her research team on several papers on patient-rheumatologist risk communication.

Blalock is currently preparing several grant applications that focus on how consumers process medication risk and benefit information and on the development of interventions that enhance consumer ability to make rational decisions consistent with their preferences and values regarding medication self-management.

Recent Publications

Blalock SJ, DeVellis BM, DeVellis RF, Chewning B, Jonas BL, Sleath BL. Medication Risk Communication During Rheumatology Office Visits.  Arthritis Care and Research (Hoboken). 2014 July 29. 

Calabrese C, Overman RA, Dusetzina SB, Hajj-Ali RA. Indeterminate QuantiFERON-TB gold in-tube results in patients with Chronic Inflammatory Diseases on Immunosuppressive Therapy.  Arthritis Care and Research (Hoboken).  2014 September 3. 

Basch E, Loblaw DA, Oliver TK, Carducci M, Chen RC, Frame JN, Garrels K, Hotte S, Kattan MW, Raghavan D, Saad F, Taplin ME, Walker-Dilks C, Williams J, Winquist E, Wootton T, Rumble RB, Dusetzina SB, Virgo KS. Systemic Therapy in Men with Metastatic Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer: American Society of Clinical Oncology and Cancer Care Ontario Clinical Practice Guideline.  Journal of Clinical Oncology.  2014 September. 

Dusetzina SB, Muluneh B, Khan T, Richards KL, Keating NL. Obstacles to Affordable Cancer Treatments.  North Carolina Medical Journal.  2014 July- August. 

Stevenson DG, O'Malley AJ, Dusetzina SB, Mitchell SL, Zarowitz BJ, Chernew ME, Newhouse JP, Huskamp HA. Effect of Part D Coverage Restrictions for Antidepressants, Antipsychotics, and Cholinesterase Inhibitors on Related Nursing Home Resident Outcomes.  Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.  2014 September. 

Stevenson DG, Dusetzina SB, James O'Malley A, Mitchell SL, Zarowitz BJ, Chernew ME, Newhouse JP, Huskamp HA. High Risk Medication Use by Nursing Home Residents before and after Hospitalization.  Medical Care.  2014 October. 

Wolf MS, Bailey SC, Serper M, Smith M, Davis TC, Russell AL, Manzoor BS, Belter L, Parker RM, Lambert B.  Comparative Effectiveness of Patient Centered Strategies to Improve FDA Medication Guides.  Medical Care.  2014 September. 

McCarthy DM, Cameron KA, King JP, Mullen RJ, Bailey SC, Jacobson KL, Di Francesco L, Davis TC, Parker RM, Wolf MS. Patient Recall of Health Care Provider Counseling for Opioid-Acetaminophen Prescriptions.  Pain Medicine.  2014 July 7. 

Bailey SC, Brega AG, Crutchfield TM, Elasy T, Herr H, Kaphingst K, Karter AJ, Moreland-Russell S, Osborn CY, Pignone M, Rothman R, Schillinger D. Update on Health Literacy and Diabetes.  Diabetes Education.  2014 September. 

Pandit AU, Bailey SC, Curtis LM, Seligman HK, Davis TC, Parker RM, Schillinger D, DeWalt D, Fleming D, Mohr DC, Wolf MS. Disease Related Distress, Self Care and Clinical Outcomes among Low-Income Patients with Diabetes.  Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.  2014 June. 

Roberts AW, Crisp GD, Esserman DA, Roth MT, Weinberger M, Farley JF. Patterns of Medication Adherence and Health Care Utilization Among Patients with Chronic Disease who Were Enrolled in a Pharmacy Assistance Program.   North Carolina Medical Journal.  2014 September-October. 

Crisp GD, Roberts AW, Esserman DA, Roth MT, Weinberger M, Farley JFThe University of North Carolina's Health Care Pharmacy Assistance Program. North Carolina Medical Journal.  2014 September-October. 

Desai RJ, Rao JK, Hansen RA, Fang G, Maciejewski M, Farley JTumor Necrosis Factor-α Inhibitor Treatment and the Risk of Incident Cardiovascular Events in Patients with Early Rheumatoid Arthritis: A Nested Case-control Study. Journal of Rheumatology.  2014 August 1. 

Lauffenburger JC, Mayer CL, Hawke RL, Brouwer KL, Fried MW, Farley JFMedication use and medical comorbidity in patients with chronic hepatitis C from a US commercial claims database: high utilization of drugs with interaction potential. European Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology.  2014 October. 

Maciejewski ML, Wansink D, Farley JFValue-based insurance design: the authors reply. Health Affairs.  2014 May. 

Oramasionwu CU, Moore HN, Toliver JC.  Barriers to hepatitis C antiviral therapy in HIV/HCV co-infected patients in the United States: a review. AIDS Patient Care and STDs.  2014 May. 

Sleath B, Sayner R, Blalock SJ, Carpenter DM, Muir KW, Hartnett ME, Tudor G, Lawrence S, Giangiacomo AL, Robin AL.  Patient Question-Asking About Glaucoma and Glaucoma Medications During Videotaped Medical Visits. Health Community.  2014 July. 

Carpenter DM, Lee C, Blalock SJ, Weaver M, Reuland D, Coyne-Beasley T, Mooneyham R, Loughlin C, Geryk LL, Sleath BLUsing videos to teach children inhaler technique: a pilot randomized controlled trial. The Journal of Asthma: Official Journal of the Association for the Care of Asthma.  2014 July. 

Sleath B, Blalock SJ, Carpenter DM, Muir KW, Sayner R, Lawrence S, Giangiacomo AL, Hartnett ME, Tudor G, Goldsmith J, Robin AL.  Provider Education about Glaucoma and Glaucoma Medications during Videotaped Medical Visits. Journal of Opthamology.  2014. 

Sleath B, Slota C, Blalock SJ, Sayner R, Carpenter DM, Muir KW, Hartnett ME, Robin AL.  Provider use of collaborative goal setting with glaucoma patients. Optometry and Vision Science: Official Publication of the American Academy of Optometry.  2014 May. 

Bailey SC, Belter LT, Pandit AU, Carpenter DM, Carlos E, Wolf MS.  The availability, functionality, and quality of mobile applications supporting medication self-management.  Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association: JAMIA.  2014 May-June. 

Overman RA, Toliver JC, Yeh JY, Gourlay ML, Deal CL. U.S. adults meeting 2010 American College of Rheumatology criteria for treatment and prevention of glucocorticoid-induced osteoporosis. Arthritis Care Res (Hoboken). 2014 Apr 9.

Overman RA, Freburger JK, Assimon MM, Li X, Brookhart MA. Observation stays in administrative claims databases: Underestimation of hospitalized cases. Pharmacoepidemiol Drug Saf. 2014 Sep;23(9):902-10.

Carpenter DM, Elstad EA, Sage AJ, Geryk LL, DeVellis RF, Blalock SJThe relationship between partner information-seeking, information-sharing, and patient medication adherence.  Patient Education and Counseling.  2014 October. 

Ward MA, Fang G, Richards K, Walko C, Earnshaw S, Happe LE, Blalock SJComparative evaluation of patients newly initiating first-generation versus second-generation tyrosine kinase inhibitors for chronic myeloid leukemia and medication adherence, health services utilization and healthcare costs.  Current Medical and Research Opinions.  2014 Nov 24.

Viswanathan M, Kahwati LC, Golin CE, Blalock SJ, Coker-Schwimmer E, Posey R, Lohr KN.  Medication Therapy Management Interventions in Outpatient Settings: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis.  JAMA Internal Medicine.  2014 Nov 17. 

Tong V, Raynor DK, Blalock SJ, Aslani P.  Exploring consumer opinions on the presentation of side-effects information in Australian Consumer Medicine Information leaflets.  Health Expectations.  2014 Jun 6. 

Desai RJ, Rao JK, Hansen RA, Fang G, Maciejewski ML, Farley JF. Predictors of Treatment Initiation with Tumor Necrosis Factor-α Inhibitors in Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis.  Journal of Managed Care Pharmacy.  2014 Nov. 

Dusetzina SB, Tyree S, Meyer AM, Meyer A, Green L, Carpenter WR. Linking Data for Health Services Research: A Framework and Instructional Guide [Internet]. Agency for healthcare Research and Quality.  2014 Sep. 

Bailey SC, O'Conor R, Bojarski EA, Mullen R, Patzer RE, Vicencio D, Jacobson KL, Parker RM, Wolf MS. Literacy disparities in patient access and health-related use of Internet and mobile technologies. Health Expectations.  2014 Nov 2. 

Oramasionwu CU, Bailey SC, Duffey KE, Shilliday BB, Brown LC, Denslow SA, Michalets EL. The association of health literacy with time in therapeutic range for patients on warfarin therapy. Journal of Health Communication.  2014.

Bailey SC, McCormack LA, Rush SR, Paasche-Orlow MK. Highlighting progress in the field of health literacy research. Journal of Health Communication.  2014.

Zlott D, Farley JF, Guidotti M. Specialty Pharmacy.  Journal of the American Pharmacists Association.  2014 Nov 1. 

Oramasionwu CU, Toliver JC, Johnson TL, Moore HN, Frei CR. National trends in hospitalization and mortality rates for patients with HIV, HCV, or HIV/HCV coinfection from 1996-2010 in the United States: a cross-sectional study. BMC Infectious Diseases.  2014 Oct 10. 

Buchbinder M, Wilbur R, McLean S, Sleath B. "Is there any way I can get something for my pain?" Patient strategies for requesting analgesics. Patient Education and Counseling.  2014 Oct 28. 

Voils CI, Sleath B, Maciejewski ML. Patient perspectives on having multiple versus single prescribers of chronic disease medications: results of a qualitative study in a veteran population. BMC Health Services.  2014 Oct. 25. 

Song L, Weaver MA, Chen RC, Bensen JT, Fontham E, Mohler JL, Mishel M, Godley PA, Sleath B. Associations between patient-provider communication and socio-cultural factors in prostate cancer patients: A cross-sectional evaluation of racial differences. Patient Education and Counseling.  2014 Dec.  

Recent Grants

Impact of Parity Legislation on Use and Cost of Oral Cancer Medications.
Stacie Dusetzina (PI). American Cancer Society.
7/1/2014 – 6/30/16. $480,000.

Continuity of Medication Management in Medicaid.
Joel Farley (PI). Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.
6/1/14 – 11/30/15. $375,726

National Health Literacy Mapping to Inform Healthcare Policy.
Gang Fang (Multi-PI), Stacy Bailey (Multi-PI). National Institutes of Health. 
9/1/2014 – 6/30/2018. $1,653,067

Evaluation of the Impact of California State Policy for Patient-Centered Prescription Drug Labeling.
Stacy Bailey (Site PI). California HealthCare Foundation.
5/1/2014-4/30/2015. $41,906

Using Question Prompt Lists During Pediatric Asthma Visits to Increase Adolescent Involvement.
Betsy Sleath (PI). Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute.
12/1/14 – 11/30/17. $1,909,315 

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