Houston Methodist. Leading Medicine.
Houston Methodist. Leading Medicine

Nelda Wray

Nelda P. Wray, M.D., M.P.H.

Nelda P. Wray, M.D., M.P.H.

Co-Director, Center for Outcomes Research
Full Member 
Houston Methodist Research Institute 
Methodist Institute for Technology, Innovation, and Education
Department of Surgery 
Houston Methodist Hospital
Research Professor of Medicine in Surgery
Weill Cornell Medical College of Cornell University

E-mail: nwray@houstonmethodist.org
Phone: 713-441-6352
Fax: 713-790-3085


B.A.   The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX
M.D.   Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX
M.P.H.   The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, Houston, TX

Postdoctoral Training

Internship, Internal Medicine, Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, MD
Residency, Internal Medicine, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX
Fellowship, Pulmonary Diseases, Baylor Affiliated Hospitals, Houston, TX
Fellowship, Health Policy, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Washington, DC
Fellowship, Epidemiology and Biostatistics Research, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Visiting Research Fellowship, LBJ School of Public Affairs, Austin, TX



Dr. Nelda P. Wray joined Houston Methodist Research Institute in 2008 as a research scientist and full member.  She is an award-winning researcher who has held numerous state- and federally-appointed advisory roles, including the National Advisory Council for the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (appointed by Donna Shalala, Secretary of Health and Human Services) and the Texas Board on Aging (appointed by Governor George W. Bush). Dr. Wray has also been a member of the National Advisory Committees for the VA Health Services Research and Development Service and the Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program.

Dr. Wray's experience includes six years as Chief of General Medicine at VA Medical Center in Houston; eight years as Director, and an additional eight years as Director Emeritus, of the Houston Center for Quality of Care and Utilization Studies: a VA Health Services Research & Development Center of Excellence; Chief Research and Development Officer for the Department of Veterans Affairs in Washington, DC; and professorships in Medicine at the University of Alabama at Birmingham  and Baylor College of Medicine, where she was also Chief of Health Services Research.  In 2000, she received the VA Under Secretary for Health’s Award for Outstanding Lifetime Achievement in Health Services Research, and in 2002, the Michael E. DeBakey MD Award for Excellence in Research from Baylor College of Medicine.

Description of Research

Dr. Wray is an internationally recognized authority in health policy research, specifically for her use of electronic data to monitor and improve healthcare. Most recently, her work has been in the area of improving the evidence base for surgical procedures by exploring ways to foster rigorous collection of patient outcome data.

Major Areas of Research

Health policy, electronic data, health outcomes

Recent Publications

Brody BA, Ashton CM, Liu D, Xiong Y, Yao X, Wray NP. Are surgical trials with negative results being interpreted correctly? J Am Coll Surg. 2013 Jan;216(1):158-66.  PMID: 23177270

Wenner DM, Brody BA, Jarman AF, Kolman JM, Wray NP, Ashton CM. Do surgical trials meet the scientific standards for clinical trials? J Am Coll Surg. 2012 Nov;215(5):722-30. PMID: 22819638

Jarman AF, Wray NP, Wenner DM, Ashton CM. Trials and tribulations: the professional development of surgical trialists. Am J Surg. 2012 Sep;204(3):339-346.e5. PMID: 22920404

Kolman JM, Wray NP, Ashton CM, Wenner DM, Jarman AF, Brody BA. Conflicts among multinational ethical and scientific standards for clinical trials of therapeutic interventions. J Law Med Ethics. 2012 Spring;40(1):99-121. PMID: 22458466

Ashton CM, Wray NP, Jarman AF, Kolman JM, Wenner DM, Brody BA. A taxonomy of multinational ethical and methodological standards for clinical trials of therapeutic interventions. J Med Ethics. 2011 Jun;37(6):368-73. PMID: 21429960

Ashton CM, Holt CL, Wray NP. A patient self-assessment tool to measure communication behaviors during doctor visits about hypertension. Patient Educ Couns. 2010 Nov;81(2):275-314.  PMID: 20435427

Ashton CM, Wray NP, Jarman AF, Kolman JM, Wenner DM, Brody BA. Ethics and methods in surgical trials. J Med Ethics. 2009 Sep;35(9):579-83.  PMID: 19717699

Mugavero MJ, Lin HY, Allison JJ, Giordano TP, Willig JH, Raper JL, Wray NP, Cole SR, Schumacher JE, Davies S, Saag MS. Racial disparities in HIV virologic failure: do missed visits matter? J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr. 2009 Jan 1;50(1):100-8. PMID: 19295340

Braun UK, McCullough LB, Beyth RJ, Wray NP, Kunik ME, Morgan RO. Racial and ethnic differences in the treatment of seriously ill patients: a comparison of African-American, Caucasian and Hispanic veterans. J Natl Med Assoc. 2008 Sep;100(9):1041-51. PMID: 18807433

Kunik ME, Veazey C, Cully JA, Souchek J, Graham DP, Hopko D, Carter R, Sharafkhaneh A, Goepfert EJ, Wray N, Stanley MA. COPD education and cognitive behavioral therapy group treatment for clinically significant symptoms of depression and anxiety in COPD patients: a randomized controlled trial. Psychol Med. 2008 Mar;38(3):385-96. PMID: 17922939