The Women's and Children's Health section specializes in pioneering research to improve the health and health care of women and children, with a strong focus on translating discoveries in population science into to real-world clinical practice. Our work includes research on early prevention of obesity and diabetes prevention; adverse pregnancy and neonatal outcomes; health care for preterm infants and infants admitted to the neonatal intensive care units; autism spectrum disorders; childhood obesity, asthma, and vaccines. Additional research includes preconception health, contraceptives choices, and cervical cancer screening. Embedded in the Kaiser Permanente Northern California health plan, DOR investigators conduct studies that can rapidly translate results into changes in clinical practice to improve women's and children's health and health care.
DOR investigators have made important contributions to the knowledge of how in-utero and early-life exposures to environmental, behavioral and metabolic factors affect the risk of preterm delivery, abnormal birth weight, birth defects, miscarriage, SIDS, and childhood autism, asthma, and obesity.
DOR investigators have built an international reputation in research on childhood vaccines, led by our Vaccine Study Center. DOR investigators also have expertise in studies of vaccine safety and efficacy; clinical interventions and quality of care for preterm infants; and childhood conditions, including asthma, obesity, and autism.
DOR investigators are studying prevention, treatment, and the short- and long-term effects of obesity, excess gestational weight gain, and gestational diabetes among diverse women. Pregnancy is increasingly recognized as a metabolic stress test that provides a window into women's future health risks. Powered by Kaiser Permanente's high-quality electronic databases, large patient registries allow DOR scientists to conduct a broad range of etiology and prevention research in the areas diabetes and obesity before, during, and after pregnancy. DOR investigators focus on preconception health including epidemiological studies and studies on contraceptive use and prevention of unintended pregnancy. DOR investigators also have close collaborations with the
National Cancer Institute to examine cervical cancer screening processes and outcomes.