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Aram Dobalian, PhD, MPH, JD
Adjunct Associate Professor

Location: UCLA School of Public Health, Box 951772, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1772
E-mail: adobalia@ucla.edu


Aram Dobalian is the founding Director of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) Veterans Emergency Management Evaluation Center (VEMEC) at the VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System (VAGLAHS). VEMEC’s work focuses on cutting-edge policy and operations questions that support VA’s public health preparedness and response responsibilities – to improve the Nation’s preparedness for response to war, terrorism, national emergencies, and natural disasters by ensuring continuity of veteran care, and to support national, state, and local emergency management, public health, and homeland security efforts. As the Director, Dr. Dobalian oversees all of the Center’s activities, including its applied research and evaluation projects. These projects are designed to build an evidence-base to improve the conduct of VA’s emergency management operations.

Dr. Dobalian is an Associate Adjunct Professor of Health Policy and Management at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health and at the UCLA School of Nursing. From 2001-2004, Dr. Dobalian was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Health Services Research, Management and Policy at the University of Florida. His research focuses on public health emergency preparedness including the public health impact of bioterrorism, hurricanes, earthquakes, and other natural and human-caused disasters. His research also spans nursing, long-term care, nursing home malpractice, advance care planning, and the role of pain in the use of health services.

Dr. Dobalian led the development of the first national VA Comprehensive Emergency Management Program Evaluation and Research agenda, and was the Principal Investigator of the National Program Evaluation of the VA Nursing Academy: Enhancing Academic Partnerships Program. The VA Nursing Academy was a $60-million initiative that enabled stronger, mutually beneficial relationships between nursing schools and VA facilities by: (1) expanding faculty and professional development; (2) increasing nursing student enrollment; (3) providing opportunities for educational and practice innovations; and (4) increasing recruitment and retention of VA nurses as a result of enhanced roles in nursing education. This project was also supported by a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation that included funding for a national conference entitled, “Conference on Enhancing Nursing Undergraduate Teaching and Learning in the Clinical Setting: What do we know and how do we move forward?” This event brought together leading nursing education and practice thought-leaders from across the nation to share best practices and insights regarding academic-practice partnerships, clinical faculty expansion and development, and non-traditional practice settings. Together, these efforts helped support

Vanderbilt University, BS, 1992, Physics

Whittier Law School, JD, 1995

UCLA, MPH, 1996, Health Services Organization

UCLA, PhD, 2001, Health Services Research

Select Publications

Der-Martirosian C, Riopelle D, Naranjo D, Yano EM, Rubenstein LV, Dobalian A. Pre-earthquake Burden of Illness and Postearthquake Health and Preparedness in Veterans. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2014 Apr 10:1-7. PMID: 24721119.

Gin J, Stein JA, Heslin KC, Dobalian A. Responding to Risk: Awareness and Action after the September 11, 2001 Terrorist Attacks. Safety Science. (forthcoming).

Der-Martirosian C, Heslin KC, Mitchell MN, Chu K, Tran K, Dobalian A. Comparison of the Use of H1N1 and Seasonal Influenza Vaccinations between Veterans and non-Veterans in the United States, 2010. BMC Public Health. 2013 Nov 20;13(1):1082. doi:10.1186/1471-2458-13-1082. PMID: 24252569.

Der-Martirosian C, Strine T, Atia M, Chu K, Mitchell MN, Dobalian A. General Household Emergency Preparedness: A Comparison between Veterans and Non-Veterans. Prehospital and Disaster Medicine. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2014 Mar 19:1-7. PMID: 24642181.

Needleman J, Bowman C, Wyte-Lake T, Dobalian A. Faculty recruitment and engagement in academic-practice partnerships. Nursing Education Perspectives (forthcoming).

Wyte-Lake T, Bowman C, Needleman J, Scarrott D, Dobalian A. Impact of VANA academic-practice partnership participation on educational mobility decisions and teaching aspirations of nurses. Journal of Professional Nursing (forthcoming).

Wyte T, Claver M, Griffin A, Dobalian A. The Role of the Home-based Provider in Disaster Preparedness of a Vulnerable Population. Gerontology. 2014 Jan 10. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 24434836.

Putzer GJ, Koro-Ljungberg M, Duncan RP, Dobalian A. Preparedness of rural physicians for bioterrorist events in Florida. South Med J. 2013 Jan;106(1):21-6. doi: 10.1097/SMJ.0b013e31827caed2. PMID: 23263309.

Heslin KC, Gin JL, Afable MK, Ricci K, Dobalian A. Personal medication preparedness among veteran and nonveteran men and women in the California population. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2013 Aug;28(4):359-66. doi: 10.1017/S1049023X13003506. Epub 2013 Apr 26. PMID: 23731616.

Claver M, Friedman D, Dobalian A, Ricci K, Horn-Mallers M. The Role of Veterans Affairs in Emergency Management: A Systematic Literature Review. PLoS Curr. 2012 Dec 12;4:e198d344bc40a75f927c9bc5024279815. doi: 10.1371/198d344bc40a75f927c9bc5024279815. PMID: 24678439.

Wyte-Lake T, Tran K, Bowman CC, Needleman J, Dobalian A. A Systematic Review of Strategies to Address the Clinical Nursing Faculty Shortage. J Nurs Educ. 2013 May;52(5):245-52. doi: 10.3928/01484834-20130213-02. Epub 2013 Feb 13. PMID: 23402282.

Claver M, Dobalian A, Fickel JJ, Ricci K, Horn-Mallers M. Comprehensive care for vulnerable elderly veterans during disasters. Arch Gerontol Geriatr. 2013 Jan-Feb;56(1):205-13. doi: 10.1016/j.archger.2012.07.010. Epub 2012 Aug 16. PMID: 22901664.

Heslin KC, Stein JA, Dobalian A, Simon B, Lanto AB, Yano EM, Rubenstein LV. Alcohol problems as a risk factor for post-disaster depressed mood among U.S. veterans. Psychol Addict Behav. 2013 Mar;27(1):207-13. doi: 10.1037/a0030637. Epub 2012 Oct 29. PMID: 23106638.

Heslin KC, Riopelle D, Gin J, Ordunez J, Naranjo D, Dobalian A. Confidence in the fairness of local public health systems’ response to disasters: The U.S. veterans perspective. Disaster Med Public Health Prep. 2013 Feb;7(1):75-81. PMID: 23193219.

Gin J, Chan EW, Brewster P, Mitchell MN, Ricci KA, Afable MK, Dobalian A. Using Exercises to Identify Veterans Health Administration Priorities for Disaster Response: Findings from the New Madrid Earthquake Training Exercise. Journal of Public Health Management & Practice. 2013 Mar-Apr; 19(2):126-132. PMID: 23358290.

Dobalian A, Stein JA, Heslin KC, Riopelle D, Venkatesh B, Lanto AB, Simon B, Yano EM, Rubenstein LV. Impact of the Northridge Earthquake on the Mental Health of Veterans: Results from a Panel Study. Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness. 2011 Sep;5 Suppl 2:S220-226. PMID: 21908699.

Dobalian A, Callis R, Davey VJ. Evolution of the Veterans Health Administration’s Role in Emergency Management Since September 11, 2001. Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness. 2011 Sep;5 Suppl 2:S182-84. PMID: 21908696.

Bowman CC, Johnson L, Cox M, Rick C, Dougherty M, Alt-White AC, Wyte T, Needleman J, Dobalian A. The Department of Veterans Affairs Nursing Academy (VANA): Forging strategic alliances with schools of nursing to address nursing's workforce needs. Nursing Outlook. 2011, 59(6):299-307. PMID: 21684561.

Dobalian A, Claver ML, Pevnick J, Stutman H, Tomines A, Fu, Jr. P. Organizational Challenges in Developing One of the Nationwide Health Information Network Trial Implementation Awardees. Journal of Medical Systems. 2010 Jul 20. 2012 Apr, 36(2):933-40. PMID: 20703640.

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