Usha Sambamoorthi, PhD

Sambamoorthi 2020

Professor of Pharmacotherapy, Associate Dean for Health Outcomes Research


Education & Experience

Dr. Sambamoorthi received her Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Madras.  She is a health economist, who has dedicated her teaching, mentoring, and research efforts to improving population health by reducing disparities by gender, race/ethnicity, age, disability, and mental health. To support her research, Dr. Sambamoorthi has consistently received funding from federal agencies such as AHRQ, NIH, and the Veteran Health Administration (VHA) – the largest integrated healthcare system in the United States. Her work has also been supported by private foundations and private corporations.  

Teaching Areas & Interests

Dr. Sambamoorthi’s teaching areas focus on improving population health through examination of healthcare access, quality, and outcomes using “real-world” large data. Her interest in interdisciplinary perspectives has led to numerous collaborative research publications and grants with physician researchers, epidemiologists, statisticians, psychologists, nurses, sociologists, policy and behavioral researchers.

Professional Activities & Awards

In recognition of her commitment to diversity, education, scholarship, and research, Dr. Sambamoorthi received the 2018 Women In Science and Health (WISH) Advanced Career Excellence Award from West Virginia University (WVU). Dr. Sambamoorthi’s mentorship skills are well known and she is often referred to as “Mentor Extraordinaire” by her mentees. Her mentees have included graduate students, post-docs, junior faculty, and clinicians from different health professions. She has received outstanding mentoring awards from the American Public Health Association (2010), WVU Vice President’s Award (2017), WVU Health Sciences (2017), and WVU Distinction in Graduate Research Mentoring award in 2020.

Scholarly Interests

Dr. Sambamoorthi has over 230 collaborative publications in peer-reviewed high-impact journals. She uses diverse national and international databases (example: UK Biobank) for analysis and triangulation of research findings. Dr. Sambamoorthi has expertise in analyzing large national survey databases (NHIS, MEPS, BRFSS, NHANES, HRS, PSID and others), health insurance claims (Medicaid, Medicare – FFS and Advantage, Veteran Health Administration, and private insurance), and linked databases (SEER-Medicare, SEER-CAHPS, MCBS, Veteran Health Administration-Medicare) to answer timely healthcare delivery and policy questions. Dr. Sambamoorthi routinely applies advanced statistical and econometric techniques in her analysis of large data.