Darren DeWalt, MD, MPH, has been selected by the board of directors of the NC Institute of Medicine (NCIOM) to the prestigious honor of membership.

As chief of the division of general medicine and clinical epidemiology and John Randolph and Helen Barnes Chambliss Distinguished Professorship of Medicine, DeWalt will join leaders in health, medicine, and policy across North Carolina to partner with NCIOM to advance health policy for a healthier state.

“The NCIOM studies and reports on the most critical health policy issues affecting our state. By bringing together important stakeholders, it identifies key issues and makes actionable recommendations to the executive and legislative branches, as well as other key players in state health policy,” said DeWalt.

“It is an honor to be elected to work with key leaders and contribute to the rapidly changing health policy arena in North Carolina. I want to help NC move toward better population health which will include improving health care, lowering health care cost, improving economic development, and addressing the social determinants of health.”

Darren DeWalt, MD, with medicine residents James Rogers, MD, and Sarah Rutstein, MD, at the UNC Ambulatory Care Center.
Darren DeWalt, MD, with medicine residents James Rogers, MD, and Sarah Rutstein, MD, at the UNC Ambulatory Care Center.

DeWalt is interested in the use of self-report measurements among vulnerable populations, particularly those with low literacy. He also has a long history of research and quality improvement at local, regional, and national levels.

Dr. DeWalt returned to UNC in 2016 after serving as Director of the Learning and Diffusion Group at the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation where he was also part of the Center’s leadership team. Prior to joining the Innovation Center, DeWalt was principal investigator for the North Carolina Infrastructure for Maintaining Primary Care Transformation (NC IMPaCT) grant from AHRQ. He led the design team and was a national improvement advisor for the Improving Performance in Practice (IPIP) program for the boards and specialty societies of internal medicine, family medicine, and pediatrics. His research has focused on self-management interventions for patients with low-literacy and chronic diseases like diabetes, heart failure, COPD, and asthma combined with patient-physician communication and health system design to achieve better outcomes for vulnerable populations. His work in health literacy includes epidemiological studies, systematic reviews, communication tool development, and clinical trials. DeWalt is a former Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar who completed his residency in internal medicine and pediatrics at UNC, where he also served as chief resident. He received his medical degree from the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine.

“We are pleased to welcome Darren to the NCIOM,” said President and CEO Dr. Adam Zolotor. “We look forward to working with him to continue the mission of the Institute, seeking constructive solutions to statewide problems that impede the improvement of health and efficient and effective delivery of health care for all North Carolinians.”

About the North Carolina Institute of Medicine:

The North Carolina Institute of Medicine (NCIOM) is an independent, quasi-state agency that was chartered by the North Carolina General Assembly in 1983 to provide balanced, nonpartisan information on issues of relevance to the health of North Carolina’s population. The NCIOM convenes task forces of knowledgeable and interested individuals to study complex health issues facing the state in order to develop workable solutions to address these issues to improve health, health care access, and quality of health care in North Carolina. Visit www.nciom.org for more information.