Assistant Professor, Division of Health Management and Policy
Core Investigator, Institute for Behavioral and Community Health (IBACH)
Clinical Assistant Professor, Center for Health Equity, Education, and Research, UCSD Moores Cancer Center
Phone: (619) 594-6439
View CV (google doc)
- PhD, Health Services Research, University of Florida, 2014
- MPH, Epidemiology, University of South Florida, 2008
- Healthcare Delivery Systems Science | Health care disparities, care delivery to diverse, limited English proficient (LEP), and vulnerable older adults
- Cancer and Aging | geriatric assessment, cognitive impairment, dementia, aging and telehealth/technology
- Population Health | Social, environmental, and organizational context, GIS
Dr. Melody K Schiaffino is a bilingual, bi-cultural health services researcher and epidemiologist. Her primary research interests center around identifying disparities in the organization and delivery of health services to diverse older adults. Using systems science and big data approaches to study how care is delivered, her work leverages the information and technology to improve sub-optimal outcomes for minority aging populations. Her current work addresses treatment variation in timely care to diverse and older adults with cancer as well as the role of language, social and other demographic barriers in access to care and advanced care including the role of telehealth and telemedicine.
Dr. Schiaffino earned her PhD in health services research at the University of Florida (2014) where she studied the role of social-spatial context on disparities in the delivery of language services in hospitals, she developed a novel method to assess hospital service areas at a smaller neighborhood scale than the usual larger areas used by hospitals to identify mismatches in where services were needed versus where they were available. She also holds an MPH in Epidemiology with a focus on HPV and cancer epidemiology from the University of South Florida (2008). Her research areas of interest are health system disparities, social-spatial context, the role of care fragmentation on quality and outcomes and how technology can benefit aging populations. Her work is informed by cross-disciplinary theories including organizational, network, and geography theory as well as systems science.
Dr. Schiaffino’s work has been published in high-impact journals including Health Affairs and the Journal of Infectious Diseases and she has presented at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and multiple national and international conferences. She is interested in collaborations both nationally and internationally, some organizations include the Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), Universidad Autónoma de México (UNAM), and Instituto Nacional de Salud Pública (INSP). Dr. Schiaffino is also an Associate Member of Moores Cancer Center at UCSD and a visiting researcher in Radiation Oncology in Dr. Murphy’s Lab. In 2017 Dr. Schiaffino started mentoring students for SDSU’s Faculty-Student Mentoring Program and is always looking for students interested in research from all fields especially public health, psychology, geography, MIS, statistics, sociology, computer science, and nursing.
- For an up to date publications list see Google Scholar.