David Arterburn's main research focus is on finding safe, effective, and innovative ways to treat obesity. He is a general internist and health services researcher with a passionate commitment to helping individuals and families make treatment decisions that align with their values while sustaining their health over the long haul.
A national leader in obesity research, Dr. Arterburn joined Group Health Research Institute (GHRI) in 2006 to forge a new program of research spanning behavioral, pharmaceutical, and bariatric surgical care. Before joining GHRI, he published important findings on the epidemic nature and rising cost of obesity in the United States. Because tackling the obesity crisis requires a menu of treatment options, Dr. Arterburn's current research covers a broad range, including policy-level interventions for health plans, pharmaco-epidemiology, pharmacogenetics, the long-term outcomes of bariatric surgery, and shared decision making related to elective surgery. With the support of the Informed Medical Decisions Foundation, for which he serves as a medical editor, he has collaborated with Group Health's specialty leadership to implement and evaluate a new initiative to promote shared decision making around elective surgical care with video-based patient decision aids. The approach shows great promise for simultaneously improving the quality and lowering the costs of health care.
Dr. Arterburn's prior research in obesity pharmacotherapy has had a significant impact on clinical practice guidelines issued by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, and the American College of Physicians. Dr. Arterburn is past chair of the Adult Obesity Measurement Advisory Panel sponsored by the National Committee on Quality Assurance, founding chair of the Obesity Society's Health Services Research Section, and past chair of HMO Research Network (HMORN)'s Obesity Special Interest Group. He is also an affiliate associate professor in the University of Washington (UW) Department of Medicine. Dr. Arterburn is excited to continue his multidisciplinary work with these and other colleagues from the HMORN, the UW, and the VA.
Bariatric surgery; health services research; economics and risk adjustment; pharmaceutical outcomes research
Obesity prevention and control
Pharmaco-epidemiology, pharmacogenetics, pharmaceutical outcomes research
Shared decision making
Schauer DP, Arterburn DE, Livingston EH, Coleman KJ, Sidney S, Fisher D, O’Connor P, Fischer D, Eckman MH.Impact of bariatric surgery on life expectancy in severely obese patients with diabetes: a decision analysis.
Ann Surg. 2015 May;261(5):914-9. doi: 10.1097/SLA.0000000000000907.
Arterburn DE, Eid G, Maciejewski ML.Long-term survival following bariatric surgery in the VA health system--reply.
JAMA. 2015;313(14):1474-5. doi: 10.1001/jama.2015.2586. PubMed
Rosenberg DE, Cook A, Gell NM, Lozano P, Grothaus L, Arterburn D.Relationships between sitting time and health indicators, costs, and utilization in older adults.
Prev Med Rep. 2015 2:247-9. [Epub ahead of print].
Arterburn DE, Wellman R, Westbrook EO, Ross TR, McCulloch D, Handley M, Lowe M, Cable C, Zeliadt SB, Hoffman RM.Decision aids for benign prostatic hyperplasia and prostate cancer.
Am J Manag Care. 2015;21(2):e130-e140.
Rosenberg DE, Gell NM, Jones SM, Renz A, Kerr J, Gardiner PA, Arterburn D.The feasibility of reducing sitting time in overweight and obese older adults.
Health Educ Behav. 2015 Mar 20. pii: 1090198115577378 [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed
April 8, 2015—Coaching helped Group Health patients sit half hour less per day in pilot study.
Seattle Times, Jan 6, 2015
More invasive treatments declined after Group Health implemented decision aids.
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