Dr. Joshua Vest, PhD, MPH


The Innovation Series with Host Dr. Luke Pittman

As technology increases and social awareness improves, health care is stepping up as well. Providers are looking to leverage data to not simply react to needs but to identify them earlier and proactively address them with the right resources and solutions. This ability involves not only accessing data but properly and carefully analyzing the results to avoid biases.

In this episode, I (Dr. Luke Pittman) interviewed Dr. Joshua Vest, PhD, MPH, Professor and Director for the Center for Health Policy at Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health. We talked in depth about current and emerging data uses, the combining of physical and social health, and much more. Dr. Vest shared the differences between public health and population health, the present and future of proactive care, usability of models, accessibility barriers, and numerous other related insights.

“It’s putting, I think, a lot more often on physicians to start with this emphasis on social needs and social risks, to expand that consideration… [because] there's lots of barriers.” -- Dr. Joshua Vest, PhD, MPH

Leveraging Data to Meet Social and Physical Health Care Needs with Dr. Joshua Vest, PhD, MPH

 (81 min listen)

In this episode:

  • Journals to pay attention to

  • Differences between public health and population health

  • Trajectory in health care technologies

  • Future of proactive health care

  • Area level measures and data

  • Qualitative measures and employing expertise

  • Usability of models

  • Expanding consideration

  • Accessibility barriers

Connect with Joshua R. Vest, PhD, MPH

Professor and Director for the Center for Health Policy at Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health

Dr. Joshua Vest is a health services researcher with an area of interest in the organizational determinants and effectiveness of health information technology and systems. Most of his work is focused on the adoption, utilization, and policy issues of technologies that facilitate the sharing of patient information between different organizations (referred to as health information exchange). His research on health information technology has appeared in Health Affairs, Health Care Management Review, the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association, the International Journal of Medical Informatics, and others. His 50+ peer-reviewed publications have employed a variety of research techniques from large scale database analyses, to geographical information system mapping, to survey research, to qualitative focus groups and interviews.

As a former local public health practitioner, Dr. Vest has a particular interest in effective public health information systems. He has peer-reviewed publications that examined the role of information technology governance structures on local public health departments' adoption of information technology and systems, the structure of state and local public health information systems, as well as an evaluation of email intervention to improve disease notification efforts.


  • Health Policy and Management
  • Additional Appointments:
  • Regenstrief Institute, Inc.


  • PhD, Health Services Research, Texas AM University
  • MPH, Epidemiology, Saint Louis University

Research Interests

  • Health information technology
  • Health information exchange
  • Adoption, implementation, usage, impact
  • Organizational theory
  • Public health systems and services



Connect with Dr. Luke Pittman and The Innovation Series   

Dr. Pittman is the VP of Healthcare Solutions at DeveloperTown and a host of The Innovation Series podcast. He is a practicing physician, as well as an entrepreneur, investor and advisor.  
Hear more inspirational and motivational interviews like this one at TheInnovationSeries.com, brought to you by DeveloperTown. 

Linkedin - Luke Pittman 

Connect with DeveloperTown

DeveloperTown is a multi-faceted software consultancy for today’s IT and Business Leaders. They create world-class digital experiences to help businesses succeed in a competitive digital world.

Hear more inspirational and motivational interviews like this one at TheInnovationSeries.com, brought to you by DeveloperTown.

Past Interviews

David WongCME Group

Dr. Justin SchragerVital Software

Brian PoppeMutual of Omaha

Dustin ZieglerElevance Health

Helen RobbH&R Block

Therese Fessenden NN/g, Microsoft

Brittni BoweringSPRINT Facilitator, AJ&Smart

Fabricio TeixeiraWork & Co, UX Collective

Jake KnappSprint, GV, Microsoft

Radhika DuttRadical Product Thinking

John ZeratskySPRINT, Make Time

Tobias van SchneiderSemplice, Spotify

Jeff GothelfLean UX Author

Taylor PalmerUX Tools, Neighbor

Daniel BurkaResolve to Save Lives, GV

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