March 1, 2024

Sunil Kripalani named VP for Health System Sciences

Sunil Kripalani, MD, MSc

Sunil Kripalani, MD, MSc, a nationally recognized leader in patient-centered and health systems research, has been named Vice President for Health System Sciences at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, effective March 1.

In his new role, Kripalani will help lead and support activities by VUMC, as an academic learning health system, to implement and evaluate innovations in patient care and population health and to expand broader efforts at the intersection of research and clinical operations.

In a learning health system, researchers collaborate with health system leaders and key stakeholders to generate new knowledge and systematically apply that knowledge into practice to improve the health outcomes of idividuals and populations, as well as the performance of the health system.

“We are delighted to have someone of Dr. Kripalani’s experience and stature in this new role,” said Russell Rothman, MD, MPP, Ingram Professor of Integrative and Population Health, director of the Vanderbilt Institute for Medicine and Public Health (IMPH), and VUMC Senior Vice President for Population and Public Health.

“Dr. Kripalani will help us to engage resources from across the organization to help the health system address priorities to improve health care and improve health at the individual, family and population level,” Rothman said.

Kripalani currently directs the Vanderbilt Center for Health Services Research and the Center for Clinical Quality and Implementation Research. They support a broad portfolio of research and training programs that seek to improve health care delivery and health outcomes by optimizing quality, value, equity, and patient-centered care.

Kripalani is professor of Medicine in the Division of General Internal Medicine and Public Health, Section of Hospital Medicine. His research focuses primarily on transitions of care for hospital patients, health literacy, social determinants of health, and medication safety.

He has led large cohort studies, clinical trials to reduce hospital readmission, and multicenter effectiveness-implementation trials to translate evidence into practice.

“I am excited about this opportunity to further develop Vanderbilt’s activities as a learning health system,” Kripalani said. “Our institution has tremendous academic programs in implementation science, informatics, health systems science, and other related areas which we will engage and apply to further strengthen the Medical Center’s priority initiatives in patient and population health.”

Kripalani earned his medical degree from Baylor College of Medicine and completed his residency in internal medicine at Emory University, where he also completed a Hospital Medicine Fellowship and a Master of Science degree in Clinical Research.

In 2007 he joined the faculty at VUMC, where he founded and served as chief of the Section of Hospital Medicine.

Kripalani’s research is funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), and the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI).

He is co-leading Vanderbilt’s participation in the PCORI Health Systems Implementation Initiative, a new national program that supports the large-scale translation of evidence into practice.

Kripalani also is co-director of the recently awarded Vanderbilt Interdisciplinary Hospital-based Systems of Care Research Training ProgrAm (VISTA), which will train postdoctoral fellows in hospital-based learning health system research.

As VP for Health System Sciences, he will partner with these programs, the VICTR Center for Learning Healthcare, the new RAPID-LHS Center, IMPH, and other resources across the organization to evaluate approaches to improving health care delivery and health outcomes across the Vanderbilt health system.

At the national level, Kripalani is active in multicenter research collaboratives including the PCORI-funded STAR Clinical Research Network, and as a founding member of the Hospital Medicine ReEngineering Network (HOMERuN).