GHRI in the Media


News media often cover Group Health research.
Here are selected mentions.


KIRO 7's Angela Russell (left) interviews GHRI's Paula Lozano, MD, MPH, in our Seattle offices.


March 1–28

Mental health

Gregory Simon, MD, MPH, comments on two issues: whether pilots could be screened to identify those at risk for suicide—and whether patients want mental health and medical records to be combined:

Anticholinergic drugs linked to risk for pneumonia in elderly

Read news release.

Sascha Dublin, MD, PhD, found that taking commonly used medications with anticholinergic effects is linked to a higher risk for developing pneumonia in thousands of older Group Health patients:

How shared decision making works at Group Health

Read feature story.

David Arterburn, MD, MPH, describes Group Health’s distribution of more decision aids than any other single organization—and how shared decision making has changed our culture:

Tradeoffs found for bypass vs. banding bariatric surgery

Read news release.

David Arterburn, MD, MPH, was interviewed about an HMO Research Network study in JAMA Surgery that he led. It showed compared to banding, bypass resulted in much greater weight loss and fewer reoperations—but more short-term complications:

The disruptive potential of mobile health apps

Read blog post.

Beverly Green, MD, MPH, says mHealth tools can facilitate adherence to chronic disease management—but the evidence supporting its current effectiveness is mixed, and research should help overcome specific barriers to adherence:

A ‘learning health system’ moves from idea to action

Read news release.

An influential blogger lauds the “learning health system” infographic from a 2012 publication by Sarah Greene, MPH; Robert Reid, MD, PhD; and Eric Larson, MD, MPH:

Feb. 1–28

Mental health and medication safety

Gregory Simon, MD, MPH, comments on a JAMA Psychiatry study of benzodiazepine use and risks in older people:

Suicide prevention: The answers are within reach

Read feature story.

At Facebook’s California HQ, Ursula Whiteside, PhD, a University of Washington School of Social Work researcher and GHRI affiliate investigator, helped announce the social media site’s new suicide prevention feature, in conjunction with "Now Matters Now," an online program that Dr. Whiteside produced and piloted-tested with Group Health colleagues while a research fellow at GHRI:

Measles and vaccine safety

Read blog post.

The current measles outbreak is evidence of what happens when “herd immunity” is broached. Clarissa Hsu, PhD, commented in the first item, below, and Paula Lozano, MD, MPH, in the four others, on the importance of vaccinating children and of parents discussing vaccines with their doctors as the best way to prevent infectious diseases:

OpenNotes opens doors for patient engagement

Read news story

Late in 2014, Group Health launched OpenNotes at its 25 medical centers—giving all patients who use MyGroupHealth ready access to the notes their providers write after an in-person visit. OpenNotes is gaining momentum due in part to promising research from a national team including GHRI Associate Investigator James Ralston, MD, MPH:

In ‘Fifty Shades of Grey,’ portrayal of sexual abuse is black and white

Read blog post.

Amy Bonomi, PhD, explains how the movie and book clearly glorify sexual violence:

Few benefits seen for ultrasonograms for women with dense breasts

Read news story.

Screening women with dense breasts is generating legislation across the country. A 2014 BCSC study involving Diana Miglioretti, PhD, and Constance Lehman, MD, PhD, is having lasting impact. It suggested that if women with dense breasts routinely received an ultrasound exam after a negative mammogram, high costs, extra tests, and little benefit would result:

Opioid-prescribing safety: Finding real-world solutions for a nationwide epidemic

Read feature story.

Michael Von Korff, ScD, continued to weigh in on the booming use of narcotic painkillers for chronic pain conditions, without solid evidence of the long-term safety and effectiveness of the drugs.

The Who was wrong: We should hope to get old

Read blog post.

Old age does not equal unhappiness, Eric B. Larson, MD, MPH, wrote:

Translating research into practice

Michael Parchman, MD, MPH, and Laura-Mae Baldwin, MD, MPH, discuss their work on a new GHRI-ITHS initiative, “Implementing Innovations into Community Practice.” Over the next three years in primary care and community settings across the five-state WWAMI region, it will use dissemination and implementation science theories and methods to prioritize and implement innovations with the highest potential to improve both primary care practice and patients’ health:

Health services & economics

Harkness Fellow Paul Burgess, MD, PhD, describes what he is learning from the U.S. health system that could apply to Australian health policy:

Jan. 1–31

Higher dementia risk linked to more use of common drugs

Read news release.

Media coverage was widespread for the link between increased risk for developing dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease, and taking commonly used medications with anticholinergic effects at higher doses or for a longer time. Eric B. Larson, MD, MPH, and Sascha Dublin, MD, PhD, reported this in JAMA Internal Medicine with University of Washington (UW) colleagues. The results came from the Group Health seniors participating in the long-running Adult Changes in Thought (ACT), a joint Group Health–UW study funded by the National Institute on Aging:

A hard year for influenza vaccines

Read article.

Mike Jackson, PhD, was interviewed on broadcast media about findings in Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) from Group Health research and around the country that this year’s flu vaccine is only around 23 percent effective so far:

Surgery for obesity is linked to longer survival

Read news release.

David Arterburn, MD, MPH, was interviewed about his Journal of the American Medical Association study showing that mostly male Veterans Affairs patients seemed likely to live longer if they had bariatric surgery than if they don’t—with 53 percent lower risk of dying from any cause at five to 14 years after the procedure:

Allen Foundation drives traumatic brain injury study forward

Read news release.

Eric B. Larson, MD, MPH, was interviewed about research by the Allen Institute for Brain Science, UW, and Group Health to learn more about how head injuries might contribute to degenerative brain disorders, thanks to more than 500 brains of late participants in the ACT study:

CT scans—with radiation and cancer risk—rose in children

Read news release.

HMO Research Network research in JAMA Pediatrics is mentioned: CT scans performed on children could fall dramatically if dose-reduction strategies like that instituted by the Image Gently initiative were targeted to exams with the highest quarter of doses and if CT scans were used only when medically necessary:

Health services and economics

With Mathematica Policy Research colleagues, several Group Health researchers co-wrote the first annual report of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Innovation Center’s Evaluation of the Comprehensive Primary Care Initiative:

Opioid-prescribing safety: Finding real-world solutions for a nationwide epidemic

Read feature story.

Michael Von Korff, ScD, continued to weigh in on the booming use of narcotic painkillers for chronic pain conditions, without solid evidence of the long-term safety and effectiveness of the drugs.

Group Health congratulates Dr. David Grossman on Task Force role

Read news release.

David C. Grossman, MD, MPH, was appointed vice chair of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, the expert panel that makes evidence-based recommendations about services such as health screenings. He will stay at Group Health and the UW, and his term begins March 2015:

Informed consent for research

At a recent Institute of Medicine meeting, Greg Simon, MD, MPH, said proposed federal guidelines could have a chilling effect on innovation and lead to standards that make sense for some studies—where a certain treatment clearly presents a strong risk—while overstating danger in others:

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