Robert Wellman, MS

“Being part of Kaiser Permanente research teams gives me a chance to develop cutting-edge biostatistical methods while contributing to health care research with a national impact.”

Robert Wellman, MS

Biostatistician, Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute

Biography

A graduate of the University of Washington’s (UW) biostatistics program, Robert Wellman, MS, joined the Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute (KPWHRI) Biostatistics Unit in 2009 after five years in the biostatistics core at UW’s Center for AIDS Research. From 2006 to 2009, his work was supported in part by an HIV/AIDS national research service award sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. His work now spans a diverse collection of topics, including pharmaco-epidemiology, post-marketing drug safety surveillance, diagnostic test accuracy, back pain, and breast cancer.

Mr. Wellman currently serves as an analyst for the Statistical Coordinating Center of the National Cancer Institute’s Breast Cancer Surveillance Consortium, working on collaborative research projects utilizing data from seven mammography registries in the United States. Mr. Wellman is also working with KPWHRI Associate Investigator Andrea Cook, PhD, to develop statistical methods for post-marketing surveillance of drugs and medical devices in large distributed data settings as part of the Food and Drug Administration’s Mini-Sentinel initiative.

Research interests and experience

  • Biostatistics

    Causal inference; longitudinal data; diagnostic and screening test accuracy; clinical trials; survival analysis: rare disease outcomes; nonparametrics; missing data; electronic data; distributed data; statistical computing

  • Cancer

    Biostatistics; breast cancer; effects of  chemotherapy; accuracy of automated data; screening test accuracy; advanced imaging

  • Vaccines & Infectious Diseases

    Biostatistics; HIV/AIDS; vaccine safety

  • Medication Use & Patient Safety

    Biostatistics; pharmaco-epidemiology; post-marking drug safety surveillance; big data; electronic medical record and claims data

Recent publications

Cherkin D, Balderson B, Wellman R, Hsu C, Sherman KJ, Evers SC, Hawkes R, Cook A, Levine MD, Piekara D, Rock P, Estlin KT, Brewer G, Jensen M, LaPorte AM, Yeoman J, Sowden G, Hill JC, Foster NE. Effect of Low Back Pain Risk-Stratification Strategy on Patient Outcomes and Care Processes: the MATCH Randomized Trial in Primary Care. LID - 10.1007/s11606-018-4468-9 [doi] J Gen Intern Med. 2018 May 22. pii: 10.1007/s11606-018-4468-9. doi: 10.1007/s11606-018-4468-9 [Epub ahead of print] PubMed

Inge T, Coley RY, Bazzano LA, Xanthakos SA, McTigue K, Arterburn D, Williams N, Wellman R, Coleman KJ, Courcoulas A, Desai NK, Anau J, Pardee R, Toh S, Janning C, Cook A, Sturtevant J, Horgan C, Zebrick AJ, Michalsky M. Comparative effectiveness of bariatric procedures among adolescents: the PCORnet bariatric study. Surg Obes Relat Dis. 2018 Apr 17. doi: 10.1016/j.soard.2018.04.002.

Hill DA, Haas JS, Wellman R, Hubbard RA, Lee CI, Alford-Teaster J, Wernli KJ, Henderson LM, Stout NK, Tosteson ANA, Kerlikowske K, Onega T. Utilization of breast cancer screening with magnetic resonance imaging in community practice. J Gen Intern Med. 2017 Dec 6. pii: 10.1007/s11606-017-4224-6. doi: 10.1007/s11606-017-4224-6.[Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

Toh S, Rasmussen-Torvik LJ, Harmata EE, Pardee R, Saizan R, Malanga E, Sturtevant JL, Horgan CE, Anau J, Janning CD, Wellman RD, Coley RY, Cook AJ, Courcoulas AP, Coleman KJ, Williams NA, McTigue KM, Arterburn D, McClay J for the PCORnet Bariatric Study Collaborative. The national Patient-Centered Clinical Research Network (PCORnet) bariatric study cohort: rationale, methods, and baseline characteristics. JMIR Res Protoc. 2017 Dec 5;6(12):e222. doi: 10.2196/resprot.8323. PubMed

 

News release

Computer-aided detection does not improve breast cancer screening

Sept. 28, 2015—CAD raises screening costs without benefit to patients and may miss cancers, large national BCSC study shows

Read it in News and Events.

healthy findings blog

For mammography, radiologists do better without computer help

Based on a new BCSC study, Dr. Diana Buist tells of technology that adds cost to breast cancer screening—without improving outcomes. Dr. Marc Mora comments.

Read it in Healthy Findings.

KPWHRI IN THE MEDIA

Computer-aided detection does not improve breast cancer screening

High-tech mammogram tool doesn’t boost cancer detection, study shows

Seattle Times, Sept. 28, 2015