Juan Herrera-Escobar, MD, MPH, is a physician scientist from Colombia with advanced training in trauma outcomes research methodology. He earned his medical degree from the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana in 2014. In 2015, he joined the CSPH as the inaugural Pan-American Trauma Surgery (PATS) research fellow and obtained his MPH degree at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Currently, Dr. Herrera-Escobar serves as Research Director in Long Term Outcomes in Trauma at CSPH. His academic interests are in studying the long-term physical, mental, and social health consequences of traumatic injuries, as well as in the implementation of trauma registries and trauma systems design.
Dr. Herrera-Escobar has work in the FORTE project since its inception in 2015, contributing significantly to the development, validation, and establishment of a methodology to systematically collect and include long-term outcomes into trauma registries in the U.S. Additionally, he led the development of a revised version of the Trauma Quality of Life instrument (T-QoL); a unique instrument designed to measure trauma-specific quality of life. This instrument was adopted by the FORTE project in 2018.
His work on FORTE has led to several publications on the long-term impact of traumatic injuries and the factors associated with poor outcomes, emphasizing the role of patient and socioeconomic factors in recovery. Some of his projects have shown that, unlike short-term outcomes, long-term outcomes are more closely related to patient factors, such as education or gender, rather than to traditional measures of injury severity. His research has also expanded knowledge in previously understudied fields around long-term trauma outcomes. For example, he has published on how understudied mental health conditions in trauma such as depression and anxiety are as equally disabling as post-traumatic stress disorder and twice as prevalent; and how firearm injury survivors had far worse long-term outcomes when compared to similarly injured survivors of motor-vehicle crashes.