Lucy Savitz to take the helm at Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research


Lucy Savitz, a health services researcher with decades of experience translating scientific findings into clinical practice, will join the Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research (CHR) as its new director in May. Savitz will replace Mary Durham, who retired in November.

Savitz is currently the assistant vice president for delivery system science at Intermountain Healthcare's Institute for Healthcare Delivery Research in Salt Lake City, Utah. She is also a research professor in epidemiology at the University of Utah and serves on the faculty of the private, nonprofit Institute for Healthcare Improvement.

Savitz will oversee 41 research investigators and 243 staff members at CHR's offices in Portland, Oregon and Honolulu. The center's scientists focus on improving prevention and treatment of obesity, diabetes, cancer, heart disease and mental health conditions. Researchers at CHR also study genetics, health care disparities and health care economics. The center was founded in 1964, and it receives the majority of its funding from federal grants.

In addition to leading the research center, Savitz will serve as vice president for health research at Kaiser Permanente. She will report to Andy McCulloch, regional president, Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals of the Northwest.

While at Intermountain Health Care, Savitz was an elected member of the board of the High Value Healthcare collaborative, an organization that works to drive transformational change in quality and payment reform. She serves on numerous committees, including the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Executive Leadership Council, the Academy Health Committee on Advocacy and Public Policy, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality's National Advisory Council, and AARP's National Policy Council.

She started her research career in health services research in the mid '90s at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she still holds an adjunct associate professor appointment in the Department of Health Policy & Management.

Savitz earned her doctorate in health policy and administration, with a minor in medical geography from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and her Master of Business Administration and Bachelor of Science degree in business administration from the University of Denver.

Kaiser Permanente is a health care provider that is based in Oakland, California.

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