The Institute for Patient Access is a physician-led policy research organization dedicated to maintaining the primacy of the physician-patient relationship in the provision of quality health care.

In furtherance of its mission, IfPA produces educational materials and programming designed to promote informed discussion about patient access to approved therapies and appropriate clinical care.

Established in 2012 by the leadership of the Alliance for Patient Access, IfPA is a 501(c)(3) public charity non-profit organization.


David Charles, M.D.

Nashville, TN

IfPA is led by David Charles, M.D., who is the Chief Medical Officer of the Vanderbilt University Clinical Neurosciences Institute

Dr. Charles is a national leader in Movement Disorders research. He took leave from his practice in 1998 and spent a year on the staff of U.S. Senator Bill Frist, where he served as a health policy advisor. Following this experience in Washington, Dr. Charles conducted Parkinson’s disease research in France as a Fulbright Senior Scholar.

Jack Shim, M.D.

Oceanside, CA

Dr. Schim is Voluntary Assistant Clinical Professor in the Neuroscience Department at University of California San Diego, and is on staff at the VA Medical Center in La Jolla. He has special interests in headache management, stroke prevention, acute stroke intervention, and neurologic rehabilitation.

Dr. Schim earned his medical degree from University of California San Diego (UCSD) Medical School, served as a medical intern at Cedars Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, and completed his neurology residency at UCSD, with special emphasis on electromyography and neuromuscular disease. He is Past President of the Association of California Neurologists and an active member of the American Academy of Neurology, American Stroke Association, and American Headache Society. Dr. Schim is Chair of the Division of Neuroscience at Scripps Hospital, Encinitas.

Dr. Schim is Board certified in Neurology, and has certification in Headache Medicine by the United Council of Neurologic Subspecialties. He has published articles in Experimental Neurology, Current Medical Research and Opinion, Pain Practice, Headache and Neurology.

Bruce Rubin, M.D.

Miami, FL

Dr. Bruce Rubin is an Assistant Professor of Clinical Neurology at the University of Miami Miller School Of Medicine. He also currently serves as the Director of the Spasticity Clinic at Jackson Memorial Hospital.

Dr. Rubin has lectured nationally and has published articles in scientific journals such as Stroke, Neurology and Archives of Family Medicine. He is a member of several professional organizations, such as the American Academy of Neurology, Dade County Medical association, American Society of Neurorehabilitation and Brain Injury Association of Florida. He also serves as the Chairman for the Florida Chapter of the Alliance for Patient Access.

Dr. Rubin received his Bachelor’s of Science degree from Hobart College and his Doctor of Medicine degree from State University of New York Health Science Center at Syracuse. He completed his Neurological residency at the Neurologic Institute at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center in New York and his post-doctoral fellowship in Neurological Rehabilitation at the University of Miami School Of Medicine.

Roger Kobayashi, M.D.

Omaha, NE

Dr. Roger H. Kobayashi is an immunologist-allergist and served on the full time faculty at the University of Nebraska [director immunology/allergy] and UCLA [director Pediatric Allergy Clinic] Schools of Medicine. He is currently in private practice in Omaha, Nebraska and Clinical Professor at UCLA.

Dr. Kobayashi was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii and received his BA in Economics [senior thesis socialized medicine] and M.D. from the University of Nebraska as well as an M.S. in cardiovascular physiology from University of Hawaii-Manoa. He received his residency and fellowship training at USC and UCLA respectively. Of the 80 papers published, most have focused in Asthma and Recurrent infections in the Pediatric population. He has been visiting professor at a number of U.S. medical schools as well as at the Universities of Hanoi, Hue and the Military Medical School in Hanoi and an invited lecturer in Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Central America.

He is an Expert Consultant for the Immune Deficiency Foundation and is a recipient of their Physician Volunteer Award and was founding member and first president of the Nebraska Allergy Society.

He is a member of the Executive Committee, Negotiating Committee and Patient Advocacy Committee [Chair] of the Consortium of Independent Immunology Clinics.

Robert Yapundich, M.D.

Hickory, NC

Dr. Robert Yapundich is a neurologist in private practice with Neurology Associates in Hickory, N.C.

Dr. Yapundich completed a neurology residency at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, followed by a fellowship in electromyography/neuromuscular diseases. He is a diplomat of The American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology with subspecialty certifications in Clinical Neurophysiology and Sleep Medicine, along with certification by the American Board of Electrodiagnostic Medicine.

Dr. Yapundich maintains an active outpatient practice that involves all aspects of Neurology, with a special interest in Electrodiagnostic Medicine. He has served as president of the North Carolina Neurological Society, and participates in various other local and statewide committees. Currently he is a board member of the North Carolina Medical Society and state liason for the American Association of Neuromuscular and Electrodiagnostic Medicine. Healthcare advocacy at the state and national levels has also been an area of significant interest. He has participated in clinical trials, many as primary investigator, and has served as co-author on a variety of past publications.

Paul J. Christo, M.D.

Baltimore, MD

Paul Christo, MD, MBA, is an Associate Professor in the Department of Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, Maryland.

Dr. Christo is a board certified, Harvard-trained anesthesiologist and Hopkins-trained pain medicine specialist. He directed the Multidisciplinary Pain Fellowship Program at The Johns Hopkins Hospital for 8 years, and directed the Blaustein Pain Treatment Center at Hopkins for 5 years.

Dr. Christo is an invited lecturer both nationally and internationally, serves on 4 journal editorial boards and reviews for several others, has published more than 90 articles and book chapters, co-edited 3 textbooks on pain, and actively teaches medical students, residents, and pain fellows. He has been a course director or coordinator for many CME (continuing medical education) programs that focus on educating both specialists and generalists on important aspects of pain diagnosis and treatment.

He has served on Advisory Boards for the American Academy of Pain Medicine (AAPM), American Society of Anesthesiologists, International Association for the Study of Pain, and the American Pain Society (APS). He has also earned an MBA from the Johns Hopkins Carey Business School in Health Care Management.