Maria Pisu, PHD

Associate Professor
Division of Preventive Medicine

Contact Information:

Medical Towers 636
1717 11th Avenue South
Birmingham, Alabama 35205
Phone: (205) 975-7366
Fax: (205) 934-7959
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Educational Background

  • University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB), Center for Outcomes and Effectiveness Research and Education (COERE), Post Doctoral Fellowship, 2001
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Steven M. Teutsch Prevention Effectiveness Fellowship, 2000
  • Pennsylvania State University, PhD, Economics, 1998
  • Pennsylvania State University, MA, Economics, 1997
  • University of Cagliari, Italy, Laurea, Economics and Business, 1991

Research Interests

  • Disparities in access to care
  • Geographic variation in treatment and disparities
  • Economic burden of disease
  • Cancer survivorship
  • Economic evaluations of health care interventions

Selected Recent Publications

Published Manuscripts

  • Pisu M, Meltzer MI, Lyerla R. Cost-effectiveness of Hepatitis B vaccination of prison inmates. Vaccine. 2002; 21(3-4):312-321. PMID:12450707.
  • Pisu M, Gerald J, Shamiyeh JE, Bailey WC, Gerald LB. Targeted tuberculosis contact investigation saves money without sacrificing health. Journal of Public Health Management and Practice. 2009;15(4):319-327. PMCID: PMC2763575.
  • Beukelman T, Saag KG, Curtis JR, Kilgore ML, Pisu M. Cost-effectiveness of multifaceted evidence implementation programs for the prevention of glucocorticoid-induced osteoporosis. Osteoporosis International. 2010;21(9): 1573-1584 [Epub 2009 Nov 24]. PMID:19937227
  • Pisu M, Richardson L, Kim Y, Krontiras H, Martin M, Salas M, Pollack LA. Less than standard treatment in rectal cancer patients: Which patients are at risk? Journal of the National Medical Association. 2010;102(3):190-198. PMID: 20355348.
  • Pisu M, Azuero A, McNees P, Burkhardt J, Benz R, Meneses K. The out of pocket cost of breast cancer survivors: A review. Journal of Cancer Survivorship. 2010;4(3):202-209. PMCID: PMC2922410
  • Pisu M, Wang D, Martin MY, Baltrus P, Levine RS. Presence of medical schools may contribute to reducing breast cancer mortality and disparities. Journal of Healthcare for the Poor and Underserved. 2010;21(3):961-976. PMCID: PMC2946795.
  • Austin S, Martin MY, Levine RS and Pisu M. Breast cancer screening interventions in selected counties across US regions. Cancer Causes and Control. 2010;21(12):2165-2172. PMCID:PMC3010185.
  • Pisu M, Oliver JS, Kim YI, Elder K, Martin MY, Richardson L Treatment for older prostate cancer patients: Disparities in a southern state. Medical Care. 2010;48(10):915-22. PMID:20733530.
  • Pisu M, Azuero A, Meneses K, Burkhardt J, McNees P. Out of pocket cost comparison between Caucasian and minority breast cancer survivors in the Breast Cancer Education Intervention (BCEI). Breast Cancer Research and Treatment. 2011;127(2):521-529. Epub 2010 Oct. 26. PMCID:PMC3087852.
  • Martin MY, Pisu M, Oster R, Urmie JG, Schrag D, Huskamp H, Lee C, Kiefe C, Fouad M. Racial variation in willingness to trade financial resources for life prolonging cancer treatment. Cancer. 2011;117(15):3476-3484. PMCID: PMC3142305.
  • Meneses K, Azuero A, Hassey L, McNees P, Pisu M. Does Economic Burden Influence Quality of Life in Breast Cancer Survivors? Gynecol Oncol. 2011 Nov 29. [Epub ahead of print]

Manuscripts in press

  • Steele B, Pisu M, Richardson LC. Urban and rural staging and treatment patterns among black and white Medicare beneficiaries in Alabama with non-small cell lung cancer. Journal of the National Medical Association.
  • Faught E, Richman J, Martin R, Funkhouser E, Foushee R, Kratt P, Kim Y, Clements K, Cohen N, Adoboe D, Knowlton R, Pisu M. Incidence and prevalence of epilepsy among older United States Medicare beneficiaries. Neurology.
  • Martin, MY, Kratt P, Kim, Y., Schoenberger Y, Pisu M. “Too much trouble for what I get out of it”. Acceptability of cancer screening tests among low income rural men and women in the Deep South. Public Health.
  • Harrington K, McDougal JA, Pisu M, Zhang B, Sadasivam R, Houston TK, Bailey WC. Web-based smoking cessation intervention that transitions from inpatient to outpatient; Study protocol for a randomized controlled trial. Trials.

Selected Research Projects

Geographic Variation in Epilepsy Among Medicare Beneficiaries

Funding: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Dr. Pisu is PI of this project that describes the geographic variation in the epidemiology, the quality of care, and the outcomes for older Medicare beneficiaries with an epilepsy diagnosis.

Research Interest: Disparities in access to care, Geographic variation in treatment

DOPM Research Program Areas: Outcomes and Comparative Effectiveness Research and Education

Older African American Breast Cancer Patients and Cancer Financial Challenges

Funding: NIA through P30AG031054 (PI: Allman)

Dr. Pisu is PI of this pilot project that has two specific aims: 1) to identify financial challenges of African American older breast cancer survivors; and 2) to evaluate the usefulness of one intervention, the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) booklet entitled “Managing the Cost of Cancer Care: Practical Guidance for Patients and Families” to help older African American breast cancer patients address financial challenges.

Research Interest: Economic burden of disease, Cancer survivorship

DOPM Research Program Areas: Cancer Prevention and Control

Economic Burden and Cost-effectiveness of Peer Advisors for Diabetes

Funding: NIDDK through P60DK079626 (PI: Garvey)

Dr Pisu is PI of this pilot project that will determine the economic burden of patients with diabetes and the cost effectiveness of an intervention that employs peer advisors to help patients manage their diabetes.

Research Interest: Economic burden of disease, Economic evaluation

DOPM Research Program Areas:Cardiometabolic Disease Prevention and Control, Outcomes and Comparative Effectiveness Research and Education

Cost Effectiveness of the Rural Breast Cancer Survivor Intervention Package

Funding: NINR R01NR011885 (PI: McNees/Meneses)

Dr. Pisu is an investigator on this project that will determine the cost–effectiveness of the Breast Cancer Survivor Intervention Package compared to usual care. The intervention consists of psycho-educational support delivered over the phone to rural residents one year from their breast cancer diagnosis. Investigator

Research Interest: Economic burden of disease, Cancer survivorship, Economic evaluation

DOPM Research Program Areas: Cancer Prevention and Control, Outcomes and Comparative Effectiveness Research and Education

Reasons for Low Follow-up in Black Colorectal Cancer Patients

Funding: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Dr. Pisu is Pi of this project that used qualitative methodologies to examine sociocultural factors that account for the modest rates of post-treatment surveillance among African Americans with colorectal cancer.

Research Interest: Cancer Survivorship, Disparities in access to care

DOPM Research Program Areas: Cancer Prevention and Control

Web-based Smoking Cessation Intervention: Transition from Inpatient to Outpatient

Funding: NHLBI U01DA031515 (PI: Bailey)

Dr. Pisu is an investigador on this project that will explore the theory that having a trained hospital transition coach engage patients in a tailored program, Transition2Quit, that can be accessed easily post-hospitalization will increase smokers’ success in quitting and be a cost-effective approach.

Research Interest: Economic evaluation

DOPM Research Program Areas: Outcomes and Comparative Effectiveness Research and Education

Cost Effectiveness of Interpreter Services: A Randomized Control Trial (PI: Weech-Maldonado)

Funding: NIMHD through P30MD000502 (PI: Fouad/Saag)

Dr. Pisu is an Investigator on this project within the Comprehensive Minority and Health Disparities Research Center ARRA Supplement to establish a Center of Excellence in Comparative Effectiveness Research (CERED) for Eliminating Disparities.

Research Interest: Economic evaluation

DOPM Research Program Areas: Outcomes and Comparative Effectiveness Research and Education

Professional Activities

PROFESSIONAL SOCIETIES

  • Academy Health
  • International Society for Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research (ISPOR)
  • Society of Medical Decision Making

UNIVERSITY ACTIVITIES

  • COERE Economic Evaluation and Modeling Methods Working Group (Co-leader)
  • UAB Cancer Survivorship Research Working Group (Co-leader/co-founder)
  • DOPM Diabetes Research Breakfast (Co-leader/co-founder)
  • Center for Clinical and Translational Science (CCTS) Nascent Projects Mentoring Panel (Member).

Awards

  • 2011 Research Excellence Award recipient, First Place Among Assistant Professors, UAB Department of Medicine