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Research resources

Learn more about the research resources available at VA Houston.

Human resources

The VA Houston research human resources team can provide personnel information and facilitate a variety requests that affect your day to day VA appointment in research. 

Investigators requiring staffing support should contact the Human Resources Manager to discuss recruitment methods and all other personnel actions related to recruitment, promotion, position descriptions, performance standards and evaluations, and termination requests.

Rafael Garcia, MBA
Human Resources Manager
Email: rafael.garcia2@va.gov
Phone: 713-794-7565

Ed Pomer
Human Resources, IQuESt
Email: ed.pomer@va.gov  
Phone: 713-791-1414, ext. 10347

All timesheets must be properly completed and signed by the immediate supervisor and submitted on the second Wednesday of every pay period, along with leave- and compensation-time requests, to ensure proper and timely submission every pay period. All requests for authorized absence must be correctly prepared, and routed through the proper channels for signature, at least seven days prior to an absence.

Rafael Garcia, MBA
Human Resources Manager
Email: rafael.garcia2@va.gov
Phone: 713-794-7565

Ed Pomer
Human Resources, IQuESt
Email: ed.pomer@va.gov  
Phone: 713-791-1414, ext. 10347

A research WOC appointee is an individual who performs research-related duties without any direct monetary compensation from the Department of Veterans Affairs. This type of appointment includes, but is not limited to, fellows, residents, university employees, students, or scientists who are not compensated by the VA for their employment.

If a member of a research team, who is not a VA-paid employee, will work on the VA campus, utilize VA resources or work with identifiable VA data, then that person must have a WOC appointment through the Research Service Line prior to doing any work on a project.

Note: The VA does not allow H1B visa holders to apply for WOC appointments. 

Rebecca Durbin
WOC Coordinator
Email: rebecca.durbin@va.gov
Phone: 713-770-1433

Travel, computer requests, and PIV cards

Travel

All travel requests for VA-paid or WOC employees and visitors to the VA Houston must be submitted to the Travel Coordinator immediately upon notification of travel. This includes travel that is funded from an outside source, local travel, and VA Central Office directed travel. All expense reports and reimbursements for VA travel must be completed and submitted within three days of returning from travel.

Rafael Garcia, MBA
Travel Coordinator, RSL
Email: Rafael.Garcia2@va.gov
Phone: 713-794-7565

Tynisha Rivers
Travel Coordinator, IQuESt
Email: Tynisha.Rivers@va.gov
Phone: 713-440-4683

Computer Requests

All requests for Research folders on the S: Drive and M: Drive are to be directed to the Human Resources Manager for Research, who can provide authorized personnel access to required folders within these shared drives.

Researchers at IQuESt should contact both the Compliance Manager and OIT Program Specialist for IQuESt for information on requesting new research and regulatory folders and to add or remove personnel permissions.

Submit all requests for, and issues with, computer access on VA network or user menu access to the appropriate Research ADPAC, which stands for Automated Data Processing Application Coordinator.

Note: All employees must ensure that they maintain their computer access by logging into their VA Windows account at least twice monthly to avoid deactivation of their accounts.

PIV Cards

Direct all requests for PIV cards and PIV card issues to the appropriate Research ADPAC.

Rafael Garcia, MBA
Human Resources Manager and Research ADPAC (VA-Paid)
Email: rafael.garcia2@va.gov
Phone: 713-794-7565

Ed Pomer
Human Resources, IQuESt ADPAC (VA-Paid)
Email: ed.pomer@va.gov  
Phone: 713-791-1414, ext. 10347

Rebecca Durbin
Research ADPAC (WOC Employees)
Email: rebecca.durbin@va.gov
Phone: 713-770-1433

Research Commons

The VA Houston Research Commons is used for clinical research, and is located on the 5th floor (5D) of Building 100, and consists of the following:

  • Waiting room
  • Three double rooms for overnight stays
  • Exam rooms
  • Subject interview rooms
  • Blood draw area
  • Meeting room
  • Kitchenette
  • Specimen processing lab
  • Refrigerator, -80°C freezer
  • Ice machine, dry ice
  • Two centrifuges (refrigerated swinging bucket and fixed angle non-refrigerated)
  • Record storage

Rates

Interview Rooms Conference/Audit Room Patient Rooms Procedures
Interview Rooms $12.50 per 30 minutes (not to exceed $75 per day) Conference/Audit Room $75 per day Patient Rooms $75 per day Procedures $75 per day

Used For

  • Room scheduling
  • Registration of non-Veterans
  • Scanning of informed consents, HIPAA authorization, and notice of privacy practice forms
  • Record storage assistance

Patricia Cloud
Research Commons Manager
Email: Patricia.Cloud@va.gov
Email: PCloud@bcm.edu
Phone: 713-794-7001

Research Pharmacy

The VA Houston Research Pharmacy aims to achieve safe and responsible handling of medications used in approved clinical research trials. The control and accountability of all research medications used in the care of VA Houston research subjects provides maximum benefit and safety for those participating in each study.

Note: All investigational drugs must be delivered to the Research Pharmacy located on the 4th floor (4A-360) of Building 100.

Services provided by the Research Pharmacy include:

  • Meeting with investigators, coordinators, and company sponsors for protocol review and discussion of pharmacy procedures
  • Ordering and handling shipments of controlled substances
  • Compounding support for double blind studies
  • Subject randomization schedules for study protocols
  • Investigational drug dosing adjustments based on drug levels (non-blinded investigation)
  • Record keeping for investigation drugs (dispensing, inventory control)
  • Drug Information Sheet (VA Form 10-9012)
  • Unit dose with bar code for inpatient services
  • Maintenance of all pharmacy investigational drug requirements to meet hospital policies
  • Protocol set up and closure
  • IV preparation
  • Special compounding

Contact the Research Pharmacists for federally- and industry-sponsored research pharmacy charges.

Research Pharmacists

Biju Johnson, R.Ph.
Email: Biju.Johnson@va.gov
Phone: 713-794-8850

Marilyn Joseph, Pharm.D.
Email: Marilyn.Joseph3@va.gov
Phone: 713-794-8850
 

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