E. Andrew Balas
|Alma mater||Semmelweis University
Eötvös Loránd University
University of Utah
|Known for||Translational research|
|Fields||Health informatics Innovation
Life Sciences Innovation
European Renal Association – European Dialysis and Transplant Association
University of Missouri
Old Dominion University
Georgia Regents University
E. Andrew Balas M.D., Ph.D. (Budapest 1951 - ) is a fellow of the American College of Medical Informatics and elected member of the European Academy of Sciences and Arts. He serves as Professor at Augusta University (formerly Medical College of Georgia). Balas is Vice President of the Friends of the National Library of Medicine.
Early years and education
Andrew Balas was born in Budapest as the third child of Balás Gábor, an attorney, journal editor and historian. After having finished the secondary school Piarista Gimnázium (Budapest), he studied general medicine at Semmelweis University where he graduated MD in 1977, ranked first in the medical school class. He started working as a research faculty member in the Computing Center at Semmelweis University. Simultaneously he enrolled in the mathematics program of Eötvös Loránd University. Among his professors were Paul Erdős and László Babai. He graduated with an MS in Applied Mathematics in 1983.
In 1984 he worked for the Registry of the European Dialysis and Transplant Association (London, UK). After returning to Budapest he worked as associate director of the Institute of Health Care Organization, Planning and Informatics for 4 years. In 1988 he moved to the United States. Working as a research fellow at Intermountain Healthcare in Salt Lake City, he enrolled in the medical informatics PhD program of the University of Utah and graduated in 1991.
In 1991, Andrew Balas joined the University of Missouri in Columbia as assistant professor. He quickly rose to the rank of tenured full Professor, Director of the Missouri European Union Center and Weil Distinguished Professor of Health Policy at the University of Missouri. Subsequently, he served as Dean of the Saint Louis University School of Public Health and later Dean of the College of Health Sciences at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia. At Augusta University, his subsequent service as Dean launched new programs, increased funded research and expanded services to the community.
His expertise includes development of priorities for innovative research responsive to societal needs, performance measurement of university technology transfer, and application of advanced digital technologies for translating biomedical research to practice. Among others, Andrew Balas is the lead author of the landmark study on the transfer of research evidence from clinical trials to patient care. The widely cited study estimated that it would take an average of 17 years to put new scientific evidence into practice.
Andrew Balas also served as consultant to Centene Corporation (St. Louis), Zynx Health (Los Angeles), Humana Health Care Plans (Kansas City), Scottish Rite Children’s Medical Center (Atlanta), Group Health Plan (St. Louis), Missouri State Medical Association (Jefferson City). His academic credentials include over 100 publications, externally funded research in excess of 10 million dollar and publications that cumulatively attracted thousands of citations.
Andrew Balas has been effective in taking on the status quo, achieving breakthrough performance improvements and fighting for better public access to scientific discoveries. Most of his scholarly activities have been focused on digital knowledge management for health care improvement. His studies about delay and waste in the transfer of research results to health care are often cited as reference points in translational research initiatives.
During the 105th Congress, Andrew Balas served as a Congressional Fellow  for the Public Health and Safety Subcommittee of the United States Senate. He drafted the reauthorization act that created the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and launched one of the first government initiatives to prevent health care errors (Healthcare Research and Quality Act of 1999).
Andrew and his wife Louise Thai, award winning microbiology educator, have two grown sons, a physician in California and an investment executive in London, UK.
Andrew completes the annual Marine Corps Marathon every year since 2005.
From his book titled "Science and Standing Ground: Minority Success in the Knowledge Society" (Tortoma, 2012):
- "Great discoveries start in minority"
- "If you have never been in minority, you have never said anything original."
- "Science is replicable and generalizable knowledge"
- "We need birds that can not only sing but also lay eggs"
- "It is worth looking back before moving forward"
- "The devil is often in the big picture, not in the details"
- "Success is built on listening to others"
- "Thank you is a magnetic compass that shows directions and attracts friends"
- Balas EA, Boren SA. "Managing clinical knowledge for health care improvement." Yearbook of medical informatics 2000 (2000): 65-70.
- Balas EA, Elkin PL: Technology Transfer from Biomedical Research to Clinical Practice: Measuring Innovation Performance. Evaluation & the Health Professions, 2013 Dec;36(4):505-17
- Krishna S, Boren SA, Balas EA. Healthcare via cell phones: a systematic review. Telemed J E Health. 2009 Apr;15(3):231-40.
- Kawamoto K, Houlihan CA, Balas EA, Lobach DF. Improving Clinical Practice Using Clinical Decision Support Systems: A Systematic Review of Randomized Controlled Trials to Identify System Features Critical to Success. British Medical Journal BMJ 2005;330:765.
- Balas EA, Krishna S, Kretschmer RA, Cheek TR, Lobach DF, Boren SA. Computerized Knowledge Management in Diabetes Care. Medical Care 2004;42(6):610-621.
- Balas EA, Weingarten S, Garb CT, Blumenthal D, Boren SA, Brown GD. Improving preventive care by prompting physicians.Arch Intern Med. 2000;160(3):301-8.
- Balas EA, Kretschmer RA, Gnann W, West DA, Austin Boren S, Centor R, Nerlich M, Gupta M, West T, Soderstorm NS. Interpreting cost analyses of clinical interventions. JAMA 1998;279:54-7.
- Balas EA, Jaffrey F, Kuperman GJ, Austin Boren S, Brown GD, Pinciroli F, Mitchell J. Electronic Communication with Patients: Evaluation of Distance Medicine Technologies. JAMA 1997;278:152-9.