Alvin Mushlin, M.D., Sc.M., is the Nanette Laitman Distinguished Professor of Public Health in the Department of Healthcare Policy and Research and a Professor of Medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College. From 1999 to 2013, he served as Chairman of the medical college’s Department of Public Health (now Healthcare Policy and Research), and Public Health Physician-in-Chief at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center. For his entire academic career, Dr. Mushlin has worked to improve the knowledge base for clinical decision-making and clinical policy formulation. Although it is a relatively new term and some of his work predates its use, his research can perhaps be best categorized as outcomes and comparative effectiveness research. In this work, Dr. Mushlin has sought both to shed light on important practice issues as well as to develop new methods and an analytic framework for these purposes. Specifically, he has conducted studies in a variety of settings, to quantify the value and accuracy of diagnostic tests and procedures, to understand the efficacy and cost-effectiveness of interventions for common clinical problems, and to measure the quality of medical care. Although Dr. Mushlin has studied a diversity of clinical and public health problems, such as upper respiratory tract infections, breast cancer, multiple sclerosis, coronary artery disease, and diabetes, there is this common thread running through all of these topics—the desire to make medical care and public health more evidence-based and priority setting more rational. He has contributed to the methodological literature on evaluations of medical technologies, particularly diagnostic techniques, and his papers have helped to illuminate the potential that probabilistic reasoning and decision analysis hold for clarifying optimal clinical strategies and guidelines. In recognition of his leadership in the field of comparative effectiveness research, he was selected in 2013 by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) to chair its Advisory Panel on Assessment of Prevention, Diagnosis, and Treatment Options. He has also been a leader in the development of cost-effectiveness analysis as a technique in medical research.
Since 2004 Dr. Mushlin has been the Program Director of the General Preventive Medicine residency program and is one of the primary mentors for all its residents. He serves as Associate Program Director of the Weill Cornell Clinical & Translational Science Center (CTSC), including its Masters in Clinical Investigation, and he directs and teaches in the program’s Foundations of Clinical Research course. He is Weill Cornell’s representative on the CTSC CER Key Function Committee at the NIH.