Ohsfeldt named Regents Professor

Robert Ohsfeldt, PhDRobert Ohsfeldt, PhD, professor in the Department of Health Management and Policy at the Texas A&M School of Public Health, is the latest recipient of the prestigious Regents Professor Award. The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents granted these designations during its November meeting.

Established in 1996, the Regents Professor Award is bestowed annually in recognition of employees who have made exemplary contributions to their university or agency and to the people of Texas. The title is added to each faculty member’s current designation or rank.

Texas A&M System Chancellor John Sharp said the new Regents Professors have proven their commitment to the System’s success. “The recently recognized professors and professionals represent the best of our great System and higher education in Texas,” Chancellor Sharp said. “Their work consistently elevates Texas A&M System campuses and agencies.”

Ohsfeldt’s research examines the effects of alternative treatment strategies on costs, clinical or quality-of-life outcomes (effectiveness), and cost effectiveness in usual clinical practice. Much of his research in this area has focused on treatments for chronic diseases or conditions, although he recently has ventured into work related to oncology treatments and more acute conditions. Ohsfeldt has made important contributions to the general area of health information technology, focused on health information exchange networks and computer-assisted physician order entry systems. Currently, he serves as principal investigator for the evaluation of Texas’ Medicaid 1115 Waiver contract with the Texas Health and Human Services Commission. He is an author of 138 published or accepted manuscripts in a variety of peer-reviewed journals and has served on several editorial boards, including the Journal of Managed Care and Specialty Pharmacy.

“His research is renaissance in character. It runs the gamut from voting at the constitutional convention and the effects of state laws on workers' safety, to the economics of specialty hospitals, studying hip fractures and strokes, and the appropriate use of statistical methods. This list just scratches the surface,” said Michael Morrisey, Ph.D., professor and department head of Health Policy and Management. “Bob has made substantial contributions to health services research, and to economics research more generally.”

A native Texan, Ohsfeldt completed his undergraduate and graduate education at the University of Houston and completed post-doctoral training as a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Fellow in Healthcare Finance at Johns Hopkins University and the Texas Medical Center.

“Bob is a great asset to our school.  As chair of our PhD program he has ensured that we are educating the next generation of highly trained health services researchers,” Dean Jay Maddock said. “Since 2005, he has been the dissertation advisor or a member of a dissertation committee for 25 doctoral students. “

The selection process for the awards begins with a call for nominations from the chancellor, after which an internal selection committee is formed within each institution or agency. Final nominations are put forth to the chief executive officer of each respective entity. They are then subject to a system-level review consisting of academic vice chancellors and past recipients of the awards. Finally, nominations are forwarded to the chancellor and the board for final approval.