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May 10, 2021
HSR&D Announces Best Research Paper of the Year Award Recipient
William Yancy, MD, MHS
William Yancy, MD, MHS is the recipient of the 2020 HSR&D Best Research Paper of the Year Award, which honors a single article or collection of articles resulting from one or more HSR&D- or QUERI-funded investigations. Research studies also must involve Veterans, with results that are important to Veterans’ health and care, and to the VA healthcare system.
Dr. Yancy and colleagues authored the article, “Comparison of group medical visits combined with intensive weight management vs group medical visits alone for glycemia in patients with type 2 diabetes/a non-inferiority randomized clinical trial,” which was published in JAMA Internal Medicine in November 2019. This paper reports results from the HSR&D-funded study, “Jump Starting Shared Medical Appointments for Diabetes with Weight Management.” To date, this is the only published study to compare an intensive weight management program to an intensive diabetes medication management program for improving key diabetes outcomes. The study also addressed a critical question for Veterans and the VA healthcare system: Does adding intensive weight management to medication-focused group medical visits provide comparable improvements in glycemia among Veterans with type 2 diabetes? The study found that participants in both arms experienced a substantial improvement in hemoglobin A1c by the end of the study (approximate 1% decrease). However, the weight management arm additionally led to a significant reduction in weight, diabetes medication use, and hypoglycemic events. This study is the first to show that a diet intervention is as effective as medication intensification for glycemic control in patients with poorly controlled type 2 diabetes, while having the advantages of weight loss, reduced hypoglycemic events, and decreased medication use.
The prevalence of type 2 diabetes and obesity continues to increase, both among Veterans and nationwide. While professional society guidelines emphasize medication for diabetes and related conditions, this reliance upon medical therapy has not slowed the spread of type 2 diabetes—and exacerbates weight gain and increases costs. Dr. Yancy’s work establishes that, rather than simply representing an obligatory stop along the path to medical therapy, dietary interventions can be used as an effective primary treatment option for diabetes and obesity.
Dr. Yancy is an investigator with HSR&D’s Center of Innovation to Accelerate Discovery and Practice Transformation (ADAPT) in Durham, NC. He also is co-Director of the MOVE! Weight Management Program at the Durham VA Medical Center and is an Associate Professor of Medicine at the Duke University School of Medicine. Dr. Yancy’s research focuses on the impact of obesity on health, healthcare delivery, quality of life, diet and other weight loss interventions, as well as preventive medicine. A past recipient of HSR&D’s Career Development Award, Dr. Yancy also has received many prestigious awards, including the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) and the Duke University School of Medicine Excellence in Professionalism Award.
HSR&D thanks Dr. Yancy and his colleagues for their outstanding work and contributions to the literature, which help VA improve the quality of life and care for Veterans with obesity and diabetes.
HSR&D also thanks the following Best Research Paper of the Year Nominees for their outstanding work and contributions to the field of health services research.
- Dawn Bravata, MD, part of Precision Monitoring to Transform Care (PRISM) QUERI and HSR&D’s Center for Health Information and Communication (CHIC), Indianapolis, IN, for the article “Assessment of the Protocol-Guided Rapid Evaluation of Veterans Experiencing New Transient Neurological Symptoms (PREVENT) Program for improving quality of care for transient ischemic attack: A non-randomized cluster trial.” JAMA Network Open. September 2020.
- Evelyn Chang, MD, MSHS, part of HSR&D’s Center for the Study of Healthcare Innovation, Implementation & Policy (CSHIIP), Los Angeles, CA, for the article “Use of general primary care, specialized primary care, and other Veterans Affairs services among high-risk Veterans.” JAMA Network Open. June 2020.
- Lauren Denneson, PhD, with HSR&D’s Center to Improve Veteran Involvement in Care (CIVIC) in Portland, OR, for the article “Gender differences in the development of suicidal behavior among United States Veterans: A national qualitative study.” Social Science and Medicine. September 2020.
- John Fortney, PhD, part of HSR&D’s Denver-Seattle Center of Innovation for Veteran-Centered & Value-Driven Care for the article “Psychometric properties of the Assessment of Perceived Access to Care (APAC) instrument.” Journal of Ambulatory Care Management. Jan/March 2020.
- Peter Groeneveld, MD, MS, part of HSR&D’s Center for Health Equity Research and Promotion (CHERP) in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, PA, for the article “Federal payments for coronary revascularization procedures among dual enrollees in Medicare Advantage and the Veterans Affairs Health Care System.” JAMA Network Open. April 2020.
- Timothy Hofer, PhD, part of HSR&D’s Center for Clinical Management Research (CCMR) in Ann Arbor, MI, for the article “Identifying recommendations for stopping or scaling back unnecessary routine services in primary care.” JAMA Internal Medicine. November 2020.
- Lena Makaroun, MD, MS, part of CHERP, for the article “Association of health conditions and health service utilization with intimate partner violence identified via routine screening among middle-aged and older women.” JAMA Network Open. April 2020.
- Amanda Midboe, PhD, part of HSR&D’s Center for Innovation to Implementation (Ci2i) in Palo Alto, CA, and QUERI for the article “The opioid epidemic in Veterans who were homeless or unstably housed.” Health Affairs. August 2019.
- Hillary Mull, PhD, MPP and Westyn Branch Elliman, MD, part of HSR&D’s Center for Healthcare Organization and Implementation Research (CHOIR) in Boston and Bedford, MA, for the article “Novel method to flag cardiac implantable device infections by integrating text mining with structured data in the Veterans Health Administration’s electronic medical record.” JAMA Network Open. September 2020.
- Megan Vanneman, PhD, part of HSR&D’s Informatics, Decision-Enhancement and Analytic Sciences Center (IDEAs) in Salt Lake City, UT, for the article “Veterans’ experiences with outpatient care: Comparing the Veterans Affairs System with community-based care.” Health Affairs. August 2020.
- Salim Virani, MD, PhD, part of HSR&D’s Center for Innovations in Quality, Effectiveness and Safety (IQuESt) in Houston TX, for his article “Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics – 2020 Update: A Report from the American Heart Association.” March 2020.
- Saul Weiner, MD, part of HSR&D’s Center of Innovation for Complex Chronic Healthcare (CINCCH) in Hines, IL, for the article “Evaluation of a patient-collected audio audit and feedback quality improvement program in clinician attention to patient life context and health care costs in the Veterans Affairs Health Care System.” JAMA Network Open. July 2020.