June 17, 2024

Speaker Highlight : Dr. Robert White, MD, MS.

Our second invited speaker is Dr. Robert White, MD, MS. His topic is “The Economic Burden of Maternal Mortality in the United States of America”. Dr. Robert White is an assistant professor of anesthesiology at Weill Cornell School of Medicine and was a Van Poznak Research Scholar in the Department of Anesthesiology. He obtained his undergraduate degree from Cornell University, his medical degree and a master’s in clinical research from Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and completed his anesthesia residency and obstetric anesthesia fellowship training at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center. He has authored numerous manuscripts exploring healthcare disparities in perioperative outcomes and quality of care. He  is the recipient of a Mentored Research Training Grant (MRTG) from the Foundation for Anesthesia Education and Research (FAER) for his project titled “Health Disparities in Obstetrical Care and Delivery Outcomes Before and After Implementation of an Enhanced Recovery After Surgery Protocol.”  This two-year, $250,000 grant supports Dr. White’s research into the effect of implementing Enhanced Recovery After Surgery (ERAS) protocols on delivery outcomes, and the development of a data-driven dashboard for clinicians. The support will further Dr. White’s research into interventions that promote patient equality and equity. In the first phase of the project, Dr. White and researchers from the Center for Perioperative Outcomes will investigate obstetrical healthcare disparities on a national scale using databases from the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP). In the second phase, they will study the impact of the evidence-based ERAS protocols.     

He is studying the pre- and post-implementation of ERAS protocols in terms of outcomes for white, Black, Hispanic and Asian patients to see if these new care processes attenuate or eliminate disparities that exist. Dr. White's goal is to apply the research from the first two research questions to the development of a data-driven dashboard for clinicians that will help provide patient care recommendations and data visualizations.  “Maternal mortality and morbidity are a major crisis afflicting our nation,” he says. “It’s exciting that healthcare disparities projects are getting an increased level of funding and that solutions to these national crises are being investigated.”      


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