Research Staff

Research Staff

The Methods Core research staff has experience in a wide range of data collection, management, and analysis techniques. To engage our staff, please contact Andrea Flores to discuss your research needs and staff availability. Staff is available on an hourly basis or as a percentage of effort. Investigators will receive up to two hours of free consulting for the planning of larger projects. As an introduction to the Methods Core, investigators will receive up to one hour of free staff time to complete small projects.


Fee Schedule 

Research staff may be retained on an hourly basis, with the new following rates, effective July 1st, 2021:

  • $95/hour –Statistical Support Senior Research Analyst
  • $50/hour –Statistical Support Research Analyst
  • $40/hour — Statistical Support Student/Trainee

For data acquisition, you will need access to a lab share on the Center for Research Informatics’ (CRI) storage system. Lab shares are available to BSD faculty at no charge for allocations up to 4 TB. Lab shares are available to non BSD faculty and other university investigators for a charge. Contact us for more information on how to navigate this process. Ask about having us manage your account and lab share. The Methods Core charges $300 per year as a lab management fee. This is for us to serve as interface with CRI, manage your lab, give access to new users per your request, create new collaborator accounts and other similar administrative tasks.

These rates apply for payments from University accounts, and invoices for hourly charges are sent out at the end of each month. Please contact us to discuss non-UChicago or non-academic rates.


Staff Listing


Andrea Flores, MA, Director of CHeSS Methods Core
Andrea Flores is the Director of the CHeSS Methods Core and has 15 years of experience in health services research as a programmer, analyst, data manager, and project manager. Ms. Flores holds a Master’s Degree in Public Policy from the Harris School at UChicago and a bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of Chile. She has worked with a broad range of data and can provide assistance and guidance with data collection, management, and analysis. Previous to her current position, Ms. Flores had a leading role in data collection and processing for the Hospitalist Project and Comprehensive Care Physician Program led by Dr. David Meltzer. Her personal interests include program evaluation, social determinants of health and health assessment tools.


Thomas Best, PhD, Manager of Research Analytics
Tom is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Health Informatics and Administration within the College of Health Sciences at the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. In addition, he supports research, analytics and quality improvement for the Methods Core and the Section of Hospital Medicine as a consultant on special projects.  He has over 10 years of experience with research, analytics and quality improvement within CHeSS, the University of Chicago Medicine and the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics. During this time he has gained expertise with C++, Ruby, R, system simulation programs such as Arena and NetLogo, and providing program management or quality improvement support for section and organization wide initiatives.  He holds a PhD in Operations Management from the Booth School and a Master’s of Industrial Engineering (with an emphasis on Health Systems) from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.


John Cursio, PhD, Research Assistant Professor
John is a Research Assistant Professor from the Biostatistics Laboratory in the Department of Public Health Sciences. He has over 25 years of experience analyzing data in government, industry, and academic hospital settings. His past projects include analysis of clinical trial data in women and minority health populations, quality measurement of stroke care, and pain management of elderly patients. Currently, John develops longitudinal mixed-effects models for the Comprehensive Care Program. He holds a PhD in Biostatistics from the University of Illinois at Chicago and has expertise in missing data techniques for intensive longitudinal data.


Sandra Ham, MS, Senior Statistician of Methods Core
Ms. Ham has more than 20 years of experience in epidemiological research methods and data analysis. At the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, where she worked for 10 years before coming to the University of Chicago, she managed public health surveillance of physical activity. Ms. Ham had a research focus on physical activity and the built environment. In addition to publishing government statistical reports, she served on federal workgroups for the Department of Health and Human Services’ Healthy People 2010 and 2020 and contributed to the Global Burden of Disease 2002. In CHeSS, her areas of expertise include administrative claims data management and analysis; survey research; research methods and excellence; statistical programming and analysis in SAS; and program evaluation. She has collaborated with junior researchers in most departments of the medical school. Outside CHeSS Ms. Ham is an Independent Scholar who writes about the history and philosophy of science and religion.


Hui Zhang, PhD, Senior Research Analyst
Hui Zhang is a Senior Research Analyst and provides analytical, data, modeling, and programming support to the researchers within CHeSS and the Section of Hospital Medicine. Her research focuses on using model-driven and data-driven methods including multiscale decision theory, game theory, operations research and computer simulation to address healthcare challenges related to payment and incentive design, clinical decision-making, chronic disease management, and hospital operations management. Before joining CHeSS, Hui has worked in the management consulting industry with a focus on healthcare delivery innovation and has also worked as a postdoctoral researcher in the Becker Friedman Institute at the University of Chicago. She holds a PhD in Industrial & Systems Engineering and an MBA from Virginia Tech.