NEWS | July 19, 2013

Health system professor, physician to lead UC Center Sacramento


Richard L. Kravitz, professor of internal medicine with UC Davis Health System, has been appointed interim director of the University of California Center Sacramento — a systemwide program managed by UC Davis.

Richard Kravitz Richard Kravitz

Kravitz, who joined UC Davis in 1993 and subsequently led the Center for Healthcare Policy and Research for 10 years, will step in Aug. 15 for Professor Robert Huckfeldt, who, after three years as the UC Center Sacramento’s director, is returning to the UC Davis Department of Political Science.

The UC Center Sacramento, or UCCS, one block from the State Capitol, offers academic programs in public policy and journalism to students from throughout the university’s 10-campus system. The director reports jointly to the UC and UC Davis provosts.

“I am gratified that Richard has agreed to serve as interim director,” said Ralph J. Hexter, UC Davis provost and executive vice chancellor. “Richard’s administrative experience, universitywide perspective and health policy background make him uniquely qualified to lead and guide the center during this time of transition.”

Kravitz’s appointment is for one year, during which time the university will re-examine the center’s vision and mission, by way of a strategic visioning process involving the center’s Advisory Council and representatives from the Office of the President and UC Davis, among others in the center’s constituency.

Officials expect the visioning process will help inform the desired characteristics and attributes of a permanent director. 

Kravitz served as director of the Center for Healthcare Policy and Research from 1996 through 2006. Under his leadership, the center grew from a small start-up to a thriving Organized Research Unit which, at the time of his departure, had 20 staff members, 100 faculty affiliates and more than $3 million annually in research grants.

Today he is the director of the Clinical and Translational Science Center's mentored career development program, and co-vice chair for research in the Department of Internal Medicine. He is a past recipient of the School of Medicine’s Excellence in Research and Mentoring Award.

In his own research, he studies patients’ acting as agents for improving their own quality of care, the causes and consequences of physician behavior and the improvement of mental health care in primary care settings.

His research has been continuously funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, the National Cancer Institute and the National Institute of Nursing Research since 2002.

He has written extensively for health foundations and federal and state agencies, and serves as co-editor-in-chief of the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

He has twice won AcademyHealth’s Article of the Year Award, 1993 and 2006; and he received the Society of General Internal Medicine’s 2006 award for best published research paper.

Kravitz is a graduate of Stanford University and the UC San Francisco School of Medicine. He completed additional clinical and research training at UCLA, where he served on the faculty until coming to UC Davis.

He is a fellow in the American College of Physicians and AcademyHealth.