Health Catalyst Congratulates Dr. Brent James on Earning John M. Eisenberg Patient Safety and Quality Award

James recognized by Joint Commission and the National Quality Forum for his leading role in bringing quality improvement science and methodology to clinical care

SILICON SLOPES, UTAH, March 25, 2019Health Catalyst, Inc. a leader in next-generation data, analytics, and decision support, today congratulates Brent James, MD, MStat, for being honored as the recipient of the 2018 John M. Eisenberg Patient Safety and Quality Award by the Joint Commission and the National Quality Forum (NQF). Dr. James, currently a clinical professor at the Stanford University School of Medicine and senior advisor to Health Catalyst, earned this distinction for his central role in bringing quality improvement science and methodology to clinical care for over three decades.

Throughout his career, Dr. James has been hailed internationally for his work in clinical quality improvement, patient safety, and the infrastructure that underlies successful improvement efforts. Among many notable achievements, Dr. James collaborated with W. Edwards Deming, PhD, to publish the first paper showing that Deming’s quality improvement concepts applied to the clinical practice of medicine. Dr. James is a member of the National Academy of Medicine and participated in that organization’s seminal works on clinical quality and patient safety, including “To Err is Human” and “Crossing the Quality Chasm.”  He personally trained more than 5,000 senior health professionals in clinical quality improvement, including many who traveled to Utah from distant countries to study with him.  Today, Dr. James’ graduates operate more than 50 “sister” clinical quality training programs, located in the United States and across the globe.

Dr. James also played a foundational role in the development of Health Catalyst’s model for using data to drive outcome improvements. While serving as chief quality officer at Intermountain Healthcare, he collaborated with David Burton, MD — Health Catalyst’s first board chairman — to apply the business principles of quality improvement to healthcare. Dr. James and Dr. Burton developed a strategy for using data to determine and subsequently implement specific changes in clinical process that produced significant improvements in clinical and cost outcomes. They also collaborated to develop a new approach of clinical integration that evolved Intermountain’s management paradigm, at the time, from a financial-administrative model to one focused on optimizing high-value clinical care.

“I think I can speak for everyone at Health Catalyst when I say we’re delighted that Dr. James has been honored by the Joint Commission and NQF for his decades of tireless efforts in service of clinical quality improvement,” said Dan Burton. “Dr. James’ important work has positively impacted the lives of thousands of patients. His work has also contributed to and nurtured a growing hub of healthcare technology and quality improvement innovation here in Silicon Slopes.  Dr. James is well-deserving of this recognition and the many other accolades he’s earned over his long and distinguished career in medicine.”

Dr. John M. Eisenberg was a distinguished professor at Johns Hopkins University Hospital.  He founded the federal Agency for Health Care Policy and Research (AHCPR), and led its evolution into today’s Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), a division of the federal Department of Health and Human Services.  At Dr. Eisenberg’s request, Dr. James served on the AHRQ National Advisory Council for 12 years.  Dr. Eisenberg died in 2002 at the age of 55 years, from aggressive, sudden onset brain cancer.  Dr. James counted Dr. Eisenberg a friend and a mentor.

“John Eisenberg was a giant in this generation of the healing professions,” said Dr. James. “I am deeply honored and humbled to be remembered in Dr. John Eisenberg’s name.”

The Eisenberg award provides a fitting capstone to Dr. James long history of awards for quality in health care delivery, including among others: the Deming Cup from Columbia University School of Business; the C. Jackson Grayson Medal, Distinguished Quality Pioneer, from the American Quality and Productivity Center; the Joint Commission Ernest A. Codman Award; the National Committee for Quality Assurance Quality Award; the University of Utah Alumni Association Distinguished Alumnus Award; the David Packard Award, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, U.S. Department of Defense; the Academy of Healthcare Improvement Paul Batalden Leadership Award; the American Hospital Association HRET Trust Award; the American College of Medical Quality Founders’ Award; and the Utah Medical Association Distinguished Service Award.

Dr. James was named among Modern Physician’s “50 Most Influential Physician Executives in Healthcare,” for eight of the list’s first nine years.  He was named among the “100 Most Powerful People in Healthcare” by Modern Healthcare for over five consecutive years, and among that magazine’s “25 Top Clinical Informaticists.”  He is a Fellow of the American College of Physician Executives.

Dr. James’ most recent work focuses on the Learning Healthcare System, with an aim to deploy best evidence-based practice into every clinician-patient interaction.  At the same time, the Learning Healthcare System captures data from every encounter, greatly accelerating clinical research, reliable care delivery execution, and leading to waste reduction in health care delivery.  In 2010, a National Academy of Medicine (NAM) evidence review concluded that “a minimum of 30 percent, and probably over 50 percent of all money spent on health care delivery is waste.”

Dr. James argues that the NAM report was conservative and estimates that real waste rates approach 65 percent, representing more than $2 trillion in potential savings each year in the United States.  He has shown that the best way to remove waste from health care delivery is to improve clinical outcomes and patients’ experience of care.  “Better quality drives out waste. These approaches have the potential to bend the cost curve and build a sustainable future for health care delivery,” said Dr. James. “It also has very significant implications for the financial health of the country as a whole.”

About Health Catalyst

Health Catalyst is a next-generation data, analytics, and decision-support company, committed to being a catalyst for massive, sustained improvements in healthcare outcomes. We are the leaders in a new era of advanced predictive analytics for population health and value-based care with a suite of machine learning-driven solutions, decades of outcomes improvement expertise, and an unparalleled ability to unleash and integrate data from across the healthcare ecosystem. Our Health Catalyst Data Operating System (DOS™)—a next-generation data warehouse and application development platform powered by data from more than 100 million patients, and encompassing over 1 trillion facts—helps improve quality, add efficiency and lower costs for organizations ranging from the largest US health system to forward-thinking physician practices. Our technology and professional services can help you keep patients engaged and healthy in their homes, communities, and workplaces, and we can help you optimize care delivery to those patients when it becomes necessary. We are grateful to be recognized by Fortune, Gallup, Glassdoor, Modern Healthcare and a host of others as a Best Place to Work in technology and healthcare. Visit and follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook.

For more information contact:

Todd Stein
Amendola Communications