John A. Spertus, M.D., M.P.H.

Professor, Daniel J. Lauer / Missouri Endowed Chair in Metabolic and Vascular Disease Research, Clinical Director
Department(s) of Biomedical and Health Informatics, Internal Medicine
Section: CV Disease
Saint Luke's Hospital
Medicine M5-125
Education and Background

M.D. - University of California San Francisco
Residency - University of Washington
Residency - Seattle Veterans Affairs Medical Center
Fellowship - University of Washington

Meet John Spertus
How did you get started in research?

I was interested in how we gather patient information that could actually improve patient outcomes while reducing risks and saving money. My research did that by rewriting informed consent forms that patients could actually understand, collecting useful information through them, and getting patients involved in decision making about their own care.

Why Kansas City and UMKC?

I came to Kansas City for a hospital job opportunity where I could pursue my research, which was unusual at the time. The hospital’s affiliation with the School of Medicine meant I could teach at UMKC, too. An added bonus in relocating here was having farm land nearby, allowing my wife (also a physician) to fulfill her dream to own a farm, raise a family there and create an organic food business.

What challenges and opportunities lie ahead?

It can be difficult to get systems or physicians to change the way things are done. But we have a real chance in Kansas City to make a difference. UMKC is one of the centers, along with Yale and Duke, working on the infrastructure to actually put this knowledge into practice. And personally, I’d like to shift toward less grant work and more work to build the infrastructure to change care in our community, collaborating with hospitals to essentially redesign health care delivery to maximize the benefits to patients and society.

Specialties and Research/Medical Interests

Cardiovascular outcomes research

Research Focus

Improvement of patient care and practice.

To deliver individualized health care at the lowest possible risk and cost, Spertus uses bioinformatics to match big data from millions of patients’ outcomes with specific data from each patient, in an effort to determine the treatment most likely to succeed for the patient at hand.