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Center for Health Equity Research and Promotion

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Lena Makaroun, MD, MS

Picture of Lena K. Makaroun

CHERP COIN Investigator

Staff Physician, VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System

Assistant Professor of Medicine, Division of Geriatric Medicine University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine


Lena K. Makaroun, MD, MS is CHERP Core Investigator, VA Staff Physician at the VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System and , Assistant Professor of Geriatrics at the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Makaroun's research focuses on healthhealth-related social risk factors for older adults and elder abuse. Specifically, her current VA HSR&D-funded work aims to broaden our understanding of multi-faceted contributors to elder abuse risk and susceptibility in order to improve elder abuse detection in the health care setting. Her goal is to develop evidence-based approaches to elder abuse detection and response in VA to improve health, safety and well-being for older Veterans.

Dr. Makaroun work closely with the National Office of Care Management and Social work and serves on the National Social Work Elder Abuse Tiger team to ensure her research translates into meaningful practice change in VA. She also collaborates with other investigators from the VA Pittsburgh Geriatric Research, Education and Clinical Center (GRECC), the Michael J. Crescenz VA Medical Center in Philadelphia and faculty at the University of Pittsburgh on NIH- and VA HSR&D-funded research studies focused on maintaining independence for older adults with complex medical, functional and cognitive problems and caregiving.

Dr. Makaroun completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Pennsylvania, MD at Weill Cornell Medical College, and MS in Health Services at the University of Washington School of Public Health. Following her residency and fellowship at the University of California San Francisco, she completed a VA Advanced Postdoctoral Fellowship in Health Services Research at the VA Puget Sound and the VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System. She joined the VA medical staff at VAPHS and the faculty of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine in 2019.

Research Areas