New faculty spotlight: Emily McCormick Kraus, PhD

Emily McCormick Kraus, PhD

Emily McCormick Kraus, PhD

Emily McCormick Kraus, PhD, is a new faculty member at UNMC.

  • Name: Emily McCormick Kraus, PhD
  • Title and department at UNMC: Assistant professor, department of epidemiology, UNMC College of Public Health
  • Hometown: Atlanta, Georgia

Research/professional interests: So many – clinical data, interoperability, data standards, electronic clinical quality measures, using clinical data for surveillance and data governance.

How I fell in love with public health informatics:

After my Master of Public Health, I participated in the now-defunct public health prevention service fellowship with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. I spent two years of my fellowship with the Denver Public Health Department working on an immunization pilot and cost study, testing the cost and feasibility of delivering childhood immunizations in school and billing insurance for those services. During this project, I learned about consent, clinic flow and how to bill insurance (manually) for immunization services. When it came time to analyze billing data, such as claims, I volunteered to do it. I never could have anticipated that this would be the start to an informatics career. I cleaned, analyzed and transformed claims data into meaningful information. It was a steep learning curve, and there were some tears. But my confidence in figuring out a new data source grew immensely.

From that experience, I only wanted to learn about how to use more different types of data to answer pressing public health, research and evaluation questions. By participating in projects using different types of data, I learned about the systems that generate and store that data, as well as the complementary systems that ingest it for processing. Building on data and system knowledge, I learned about interoperability and the various methods that systems can communicate with each other – a space that has exploded over the past two decades. I love informatics because it helps me see a vast continuum, the entire story from tiny specks of data all the way up to flows of massive data flows and transactions.


  • PHD, University of Colorado in 2018
  • MPH, Emory University, 2008
  • BS, Georgia State University, 2006

Three things people may not know about me:

  • I am an avid gardener and spend an embarassing amount of time during the summer with my hands in the dirt.
  • I watch too much food-focused television and now critique most restaurant meals like I’m a food judge (mostly in my head).
  • When I started my public health career, I was most interested in global health and not at all interested in informatics. I spent a summer living in Rwanda working at an HIV clinic and got to go rafting down the Nile River.

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