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Seattle-Denver Center of Innovation (COIN)


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COIN Investigators & Staff

COIN Affiliate Investigator


Comilla Sasson, MD, MHS
Title: Associate Clinical Professor, Emergency Medicine, University of Colorado
Location: Denver
University of Colorado webpage
See Dr. Sasson's Dimensions profile that includes: publications, grants, datasets, patents and clinical trials
Dr. Sasson received her M.D. from the University of Illinois at Chicago School of Medicine and completed her Emergency Medicine Residency at Emory University in Atlanta, GA. She received a Master of Science in Health and Health Services Research from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor and a PhD in Health Services Research in 2014 from the Colorado School of Public Health.
She continues to work clinically in the Emergency Department and serves as a Denver/Seattle COIN Investigator at the Veterans Affair Hospital in Aurora, CO researching, developing and implementing ED-based quality improvement programs for safer opioid prescribing and treatment of opioid use disorder. She also serves as the Special Advisor to the VHA Medical Advisory Panel in Pharmacy Benefits Management. Dr. Sasson also serves the Vice President for Science Innovation for Emergency Cardiovascular Care at the American Heart Association. She maintains appointments in the Colorado School of Public Health and University of Colorado School of Medicine.
She has authored 90 publications in peer-reviewed journals, including original work on geographic, racial/ethic and socioeconomic disparities in bystander CPR and survival from cardiac arrest. Her research interests include decreasing health disparities in cardiac arrest survival, utilizing research methods to systematically improve communities, and working with partners to improve the chain of survival, as well as improving access to care for substance use disorders in the Emergency Department.

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Recent Publications


The following research fields have been used to summarize Dr. Sasson's publication (the number in parenthesis is the times that research field has appeared). The categories are based on 115 publications with 12,487 citations of her work, 81% of her publications have at least 1 citation:

  • Clinical Research (58)
  • Cardiovascular (56)
  • Heart Disease (51)
  • Health Services (31)
  • Emergency Care (17)
  • Prevention (11)
  • Injury (total) Accidents/Adverse Effects (10)
  • Pediatric (10)
  • Clinical Trials and Supportive Activities (9)
  • Patient Safety (6)
  • Heart Disease - Coronary Heart Disease (4)




Morgan RW, Atkins DL, Hsu A, Kamath-Rayne BD, Aziz K, Berg RA, Bhanji F, Chan M, Cheng A, Chiotos K, de Caen A, Duff JP, Fuchs S, Joyner BL Jr, Kleinman M, Lasa JJ, Lee HC, Lehotzky RE, Levy A, McBride ME, Meckler G, Nadkarni V, Raymond T, Roberts K, Schexnayder SM, Sutton RM, Terry M, Walsh B, Zelop CM, Sasson C, Topjian A. Guidance for Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation of Children With Suspected or Confirmed COVID-19. Pediatrics. 2022 Jul 12. doi: 10.1542/peds.2021-056043. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 35818123.

Perry C, Liberto J, Milliken C, Burden J, Hagedorn H, Atkinson T, McKay JR, Mooney L, Sall J, Sasson C, Saxon A, Spevak C, Gordon AJ; VA/DoD Guideline Development Group*. The Management of Substance Use Disorders: Synopsis of the 2021 U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and U.S. Department of Defense Clinical Practice Guideline. Ann Intern Med. 2022 Mar 22. doi: 10.7326/M21-4011. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 35313113.

Atkins DL, Sasson C, Hsu A, Aziz K, Becker LB, Berg RA, Bhanji F, Bradley SM, Brooks SC, Chan M, Chan PS, Cheng A, Clemency B, de Caen A, Duff JP, Edelson DP, Flores GE, Fuchs S, Girotra S, Hinkson C, Joyner BL, Kamath-Rayne BD, Kleinman M, Kudenchuk PJ, Lasa JJ, Lavonas EJ, Lee HC, Lehotzky RE, Levy A, McBride ME, Meckler G, Merchant RM, Moitra V, Nadkarni V, Panchal AR, Peberdy MA, Raymond T, Roberts K, Sayre MR, Schexnayder SM, Sutton RM, Terry M, Topjian A, Walsh B, Wang DS, Zelop CM, Morgan RW; Emergency Cardiovascular Care Committee and Get With the Guidelines-Resuscitation, Adult and Pediatric Task Forces of the American Heart Association in Collaboration With the American Academy of Pediatrics, American Association for Respiratory Care, American Society of Anesthesiologists, and the Society of Critical Care Anesthesiologists. 2022 Interim Guidance to Healthcare Providers for Basic and Advanced Cardiac Life Support in Adults, Children, and Neonates with Suspected or Confirmed COVID-19: From the Emergency Cardiovascular Care Committee and Get With the Guidelines®-Resuscitation Adult and Pediatric Task Forces of the American Heart Association in Collaboration with the American Academy of Pediatrics, American Association for Respiratory Care, The Society of Critical Care Anesthesiologists, and American Society of Anesthesiologists. Circ Cardiovasc Qual Outcomes. 2022 Jan 24. doi: 10.1161/CIRCOUTCOMES.122.008900. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 35072519.



Moskovitz JB, Khambhati K, Sasson C, D'Amore J, Jones MP, Sperling J. Impact of a Novel Emergency Department Forward Treatment Area During the New York City COVID-19 Surge. West J Emerg Med. 2021 Jul 14;22(4):871-877. doi: 10.5811/westjem.2021.3.50653. PMCID: PMC8328161. PMID: 35354000.

Haukoos J, Douglas IS, Sasson C. Vasopressin and Steroids as Adjunctive Treatment for In-Hospital Cardiac Arrest. JAMA. 2021 Sep 29. doi: 10.1001/jama.2021.15460. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34587235.

Dieujuste N, Johnson-Koenke R, Celedon M, Basrai Z, Christopher M, Smith J, Sasson C. (2021). Provider Perceptions of Opioid Safety Measures in VHA Emergency Departments and Urgent Care Centers. Fed Pract. 2021 September;38(9):412-419. DOI:10.12788/fp.0179.

Moeller S, Hansen CM, Kragholm K, Dupre ME, Sasson C, Pearson DA, Tyson C, Jollis JG, Monk L, Starks MA, McNally B, Thomas KL, Becker L, Torp-Pedersen C, Granger CB. Race Differences in Interventions and Survival After Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest in North Carolina, 2010 to 2014. J Am Heart Assoc. 2021 Aug 25:e019082. doi: 10.1161/JAHA.120.019082. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34431375.

Vogel JA, Burnham RI, McVaney K, Havranek EP, Edwards D, Hulac S, Sasson C. The importance of neighborhood in 9-1-1 ambulance contacts: A geospatial analysis of medical and trauma emergencies in Denver. Prehosp Emerg Care. 2021 Jan 5:1-15. doi: 10.1080/10903127.2020.1868634. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 33400608.



Jeong JM, Radeos MS, Shee B, Kindschuh M, Hernandez C, Sasson C, Braciale TJ, Freeze M, Kindschuh W. COVID-19 Seroconversion in Emergency Professionals at an Urban Academic Emergency Department in New York City. Ann Emerg Med. 2020 Dec;76(6):815-816. doi: 10.1016/j.annemergmed.2020.06.038. Epub 2020 Jun 22. PMCID: PMC7306730. PMID: 33222793