Elbert S. Huang, MD, MPH
Dr. Huang is a general internist who studies clinical and health care policy issues at the intersection of diabetes, aging, and health economics. His main research focus is in the area of medical decision making for elderly patients with type 2 diabetes where uncertainty exists regarding how to best individualize diabetes treatments based on clinical parameters and patient preferences. Dr. Huang has established one of the most active research programs in geriatric diabetes in the country. In intervention research sponsored by the American Diabetes Association, Dr. Huang and colleagues are evaluating a web-based decision tool that incorporates prognostic simulation modeling with treatment preference elicitation. In clinical epidemiology, Dr. Huang is principal investigator with Dr. Andrew Karter from Kaiser Permanente of the Diabetes and Aging Project, the largest, modern multi-ethnic cohort study of older diabetes patients in existence (n ~112,000). This 5-year NIH sponsored study will provide a modern description of the natural history of diabetes in the elderly and help to confirm or deny concerns regarding the potential adverse effects of diabetes medications in the elderly. In prior work, Dr. Huang conducted one of the largest studies of diabetes patient preferences in existence, interviewing patients of different ethnic backgrounds in two Chicago locations. This data has provided insight into how diabetes patients’ weigh the relative burdens of living with comprehensive diabetes care versus life with complications. Apart from geriatric diabetes, Dr. Huang studies the economic impact of diabetes quality improvement efforts, new diabetes technologies such as continuous glucose monitoring, and the patient centered medical home.