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Center of Innovation for Complex Chronic Healthcare

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Sherri LaVela, PhD, MPH, MBA

Dr. Sherri LaVela

Dr. LaVela is a Senior Research Scientist at the Center of Innovation for Complex Chronic Healthcare (CINCCH). She joined the Center in 1998 and is an active investigator within Health Services Research and Development and Rehabilitation Research. Dr. LaVela is also a Research Associate Professor in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University. In addition, she serves as a faculty mentor for graduate students and fellows in public health, behavioral health, and medical programs at both VA and NU.

Dr. LaVela has 20+ years of experience in quantitative and qualitative research design and methodology, implementation science, program evaluation, and quality improvement. Her research spans several areas of health services and rehabilitation research, including patient experience, patient-reported outcomes, family-centered care and informal caregiving, implementation of evidence-based strategies toward optimal health care and delivery, physical function, and weight management.  Much of her research has focused on patient-centered care, equitable health care, and improving health outcomes and patient experience for special populations, including individuals with neurological conditions and/or physical disabilities (e.g., multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injuries and disorders), Veterans, women, and older adults. 

Dr. LaVela serves as a reviewer for merit review grant panels and is a member of numerous organizations, where she serves on multiple working groups within and external to the VA. Select examples include Senior Consultant, VA Patient Experience Office and Advisory Board member of the Midwest Regional Spinal Cord Injury Care System (MRSCICS).  She serves on the Editorial Board for journals such as, Rehabilitation Psychology and Patient Experience Journal, and is a reviewer for several peer-reviewed journals.  Dr. LaVela has widely presented her work at conferences and has authored 110+ publications in peer-reviewed journals.

updated 11-29-2021