Established in 2018, the Research Department at Borrego Health aims to build an infrastructure to develop and oversee research in Borrego Health clinical sites and to bring new opportunities for research to the Borrego Health system. The Research Department works with academic institutions; federal, state, and private funding sources; and Borrego Health providers and staff to identify and pursue research that improves the health of the patients and communities we serve. The department also partners with the residency training program, mentoring residents on required scholarly activities.


Led by the Director of Research, Christina Reaves, the founding Research Team brings many years of experience working with academic research centers and community-based organizations to improve health and healthcare delivery in under-served communities in inland Southern California and rural populations in the southern United States.


For inquiries on research projects and opportunities, please contact


Research Staff


Christina Reaves, MPH

Director of Research


Christina Reaves has 14 years of experience in health services research and community-engagement methods. Prior to her arrival at Borrego Health, she served as the deputy director of the University of California, Riverside School of Medicine’s Center for Healthy Communities.


She spent over eight years with the Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System and the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. Her positions included administrative director for the Translational Research Institute, funded by the National Center for Advancing Translational Science.


She has directed multi-site health services research studies and community-engaged studies involving veterans, rural African American communities in the Arkansas Delta region, faith-based organizations, Latino communities in Riverside, aging HIV-positive communities in the Coachella Valley, and Native American communities in Riverside and San Bernardino Counties.


Heather Patel, MPH

Research Analyst


Heather Patel is a recent graduate of the University of California, Los Angeles Fielding School of Public Health. She has experience working with academic research centers that specialize in community-based participatory research. She has supported principal investigators in developing academic publications and grant materials for research projects involving under-served populations in Los Angeles County and inland Southern California.


She has also worked as a project coordinator for a health care transition planning consultancy firm, working with hospital clients in the Midwest and Southern California to prepare operations, nursing, environmental services, and other staff for minimal-interruption moves into renovated or newly-built care settings.

Rod Hagan

Clinical Research Coordinator

Rod Hagan joined Borrego Health in August 2016 after nearly 15 years at Hewlett-Packard, where he served as a Project Manager for a globally distributed software development team. Rod worked closely with Dr. Steven Scheibel to start the effort to conduct clinical research at Borrego Health.

Rod has extensive experience directing the demands of complex projects and events, using a broad mix of technical and "people" skills to further the mission of the Research Department at Borrego Health.

Greer Sullivan, MD, MSPH



Dr. Sullivan is a health services researcher with extensive experience in community-engaged research with under-served and rural populations. She was the founding director of the Center for Healthy Communities, a health services research program, at the University of California, Riverside School of Medicine, where she was also the associate dean for population health, a professor of psychiatry, and the William R. Johnson, Jr. and S. Sue Johnson endowed chair.


Dr. Sullivan has a long history of leading research centers. She founded and directed for 13 years the Veteran Administration’s South Central Mental Illness Research and Clinical Centers, a virtual center including five academic institutions and spanning eight Southern states. She led the Community Engagement Core for the Translational Research Institute (TRI) at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and served as the interim director of the TRI.


Dr. Sullivan has founded and led two fellowship programs in health services research and has a long record of mentoring junior health services researchers at various institutions across the nation. Her areas of expertise include the stigma of mental illness, homelessness, rural disparities, and collaborative care.

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