Pittsburgh Claude D. Pepper Older Americans Independence Center

CPOC Leaders

Steven M. Albert, PhD, MSPH, Professor and Chair of the Department of Behavioral and Community Health Sciences in the Graduate School of Public Health, is the core leader. He has well established ties with the community and a thriving research program interested in preventing falls in the community. Dr. Albert directs the highly successful effort to enroll and follow participants in our Community Research Registry and manages its use and maintenance. He works with Pepper investigators to gain access to needed databases. He helps facilitate LTC research and utilization in collaboration with Dr. Nace. He collaborates with Dr. Handler to support use of informatics technology. He also directs activities of our Community Advisory Board.

Jennifer S. Brach, PhD, PT, Associate Professor of Physical Therapy in the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, Co-leader of the CPOC is a PCORI funded investigator with expertise in the areas of mobility, physical and cognitive function. Dr. Brach is knowledgeable regarding patient-centered and community-based participatory research and will serve as a resource for fellow Pepper investigators who wish to pursue community-based research. She also oversees utilization of the SMART Center and our mobile laboratory unit. Together, she and Dr. Albert have over 35 years of experience in aging research.

David Nace, MD, MPH, Associate Professor of Geriatric Medicine and Director of Long-Term Care (LTC) Services in the Division of Geriatric Medicine and Gerontology , is an expert on quality improvement in the LTC setting and is knowledgeable regarding issues of LTC access, measurement, IRB protocol and consent processes. Dr. Nace leads our LTC Network.

Steve Handler, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor of Medicine and Medical Director for Long-Term Care Health Information Technology at UPMC has been instrumental in facilitating biomedical informatics technology in the LTC setting and will enrich and expand our capacity for clinical research in the renewal. Both Drs. Nace and Handler have been key investigators in developing the renewal LTC registry.

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