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IDEAS Center: Informatics, Decision Enhancement, & Analytics Sciences

Informatics, Decision Enhancement, & Analytics Sciences Center

IDEA Steam Team

About Us

Informatics, Decision-Enhancement, and Analytic Sciences (IDEAS) is a VA Health Services Research and Development Center of Innovation located in Salt Lake City, Utah. The mission of the Informatics, Decision-Enhancement, and Analytic Sciences (IDEAS) Center of Innovation is to advance scientific discovery, implement novel interventions, promote cross-center collaboration, increase research capacity, and engage Veterans and operational partners to improve Veteran health. IDEAS seeks to drive the transformation or health care delivery in Veterans Health Administration (VHA) through an integrated portfolio of transitional research, specifically to apply qualitative and quantitative methods of inquiry to elicit stakeholder perspectives, characterize clinical gaps, and identify information needs.

  • Generate new knowledge to improve prediction of impacts of health system changes, to support clinical practice improvement, and to guide mitigation of adverse outcomes in Veterans.
  • Design and implement innovative solutions to high priority problems, advancing VHA as a learning health system.
  • Collaborate with operational partners to disseminate interventions that enhance the quality, efficiency and safety of health care delivery in VHA and improve Veteran health.

Informatics is the unifying theme for our Center. Biomedical informatics is an interdisciplinary field that aims to improve health through effective use of information to advance knowledge, solve problems, and enhance decision making. many of our investigators are both health services researchers and informaticians, an overlap that reflects the historical prominence of informatics at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Salt Lake City (SLC) Health Care System and our close academic affiliate, University of Utah (U of U) Health. IDEAS is home to 52 investigators, including VA HSR&D Career Development Awardees, a Research Career Scientist, and informatics fellows. Nearly 40 data specialists work in specific projects and method cores, and our strong administrative core staff is devoted to advancing health services research and informatics.


The IDEAS Center is a close, synergistic collaboration of health services researchers from a variety of departments and centers across the University of Utah and Salt Lake City. Represented entities are the Departments of Medicine, Biomedical Informatics, Psychology, and Pharmacy Practice; the VA Salt Lake Geriatrics Research, Education and Clinical Center; the Huntsman Cancer Institute; the Intermountain Healthcare Institute for Healthcare Delivery; the Utah Department of Health; the CDC Center for Public Health Informatics; and the Utah Center on Aging.

The IDEAS center also participates in training of researchers through the Epidemiology track of the K-30 program, the master’s and doctoral programs of the Department of Biomedical Informatics, and federal career development awards.

Highlighted Research

The Safety and Healthcare Epidemiology Prevention Research Development (SHEPheRD) Program: the major goal of this project was to implement outpatient antibiotic stewardship in diverse types of primary, urgent/episodic, and emergency care settings. Our project included the top five categories of providers that prescribe antibiotics in the US (i.e. family practice, pediatrics, internal medicine, dentists, and nurse practitioners). A sample protocol developed from this research can be found here

VA Salt Lake City Profiles Dr. Samore, Recipient of 2019 VA Under Secretary's Award in Health Services Research



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Epidemiology Publications