Urmimala Sarkar MD, MPH is an Assistant Professor of Medicine in Residence at the University of California, San Francisco. Dr. Sarkar’s research focuses on (1) patient safety in outpatient settings, including adverse drug events, missed and delayed diagnosis, and failures of treatment monitoring, (2) health information technology and social media to improve the safety and quality of outpatient care, and (3) implementation of evidence-based innovations in real-world, safety-net care settings.
Dr. Sarkar has conducted studies which explore the impact of health communication (health literacy, English proficiency) and health information technology on patient safety. Her prior studies on internet-based patient portals demonstrate digital disparities by race/ethnicity and health literacy. Her social media studies use mixed-methods approaches to understand patient perspectives about physician quality and about cancer screening behaviors. Her ongoing work employs varied health information technologies to detect and ameliorate adverse events among outpatient chronic disease populations. She is currently funded by the Agency for Health Care Research and Quality, the California Healthcare Foundation, and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.
In addition to her research, Dr. Sarkar applies her patient safety expertise in her role as the Quality and Safety Liaison for the General Medicine Clinic at San Francisco General Hospital, for which her quality-related activities include outpatient case reviews, provider credentialing, and participation in the Medication Error Reduction Plan and Ambulatory Care Committees. Dr. Sarkar serves as the co-director for the San Francisco General Hospital Primary Care Residency’s Quality Improvement, Patient Safety, and Leadership Curriculum with Dr. Claire Horton, and mentors trainees in both research and quality improvement projects. Dr. Sarkar also serves as co-director for the School of Medicine’s Office of Student Research and Research Allocation Program- trainees, with Dr. Daniel Lowenstein.