Melissa Anderson, MS

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“My work is rewarding because we study a wide variety of scientific questions that address major public health priorities and our results have an impact.”

Melissa Anderson, MS

Senior Collaborative Biostatistician, Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute

Biography

Biostatistician Melissa Anderson, MS, has collaborated on a wide range of health care topics throughout her career, with an emphasis on preventive care. Her recent research has focused on cancer screening and cardiovascular health. Ms. Anderson worked with Beverly Green, MD, MPH, to determine whether a centralized system of stepped increases in support improves uptake and long-term adherence to colorectal cancer screening.  Ms. Anderson and Dr. Green have also collaborated to answer important questions regarding cardiovascular health, including whether a patient’s cardiovascular risks can be defined using automated electronic health record data and if this method can identify high-risk patients. Other areas of interest are blood pressure measurement variability, and diagnostic accuracy of various blood pressure measurement protocols.

Ms. Anderson has experience with longitudinal observational studies and has considerable expertise in the design and analysis of randomized clinical trials. She was the lead analyst for recent randomized trials of behavioral interventions to (1) promote smoking cessation and oral health behaviors among smoking quitline callers, (2) decrease sedentary time among older adults with obesity, and (3) improve pain and function outcomes through group-based cognitive behavioral therapy and mindfulness-based stress reduction among patients with chronic back pain.  

Ms. Anderson received her master’s degree in biostatistics at the University of Washington in 1996.  Prior to joining Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute in 2003, she worked at the Statistical Coordinating Center for the Cardiovascular Health Study, and the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis. 

Research Interests and Experience

  • Biostatistics

    Randomized trials, diagnostic test accuracy, longitudinal data analysis, missing data methods

  • Behavior Change

    Physical activity, oral health care, smoking cessation

  • Cancer

    Breast, cervical, and colorectal cancer screening

    Cardiovascular Health

    Cardiovascular risk assessment, blood pressure measurement

  • Preventive Medicine

    Adherence to preventive care recommendations

Recent publications

Henrikson NB, Anderson ML, Hubbard RA, Fishman P, Grossman DC. Employee knowledge of value-based insurance design benefits. Am J Prev Med. 2014;47(2):115-22. doi: 10.1016/j.amepre.2014.03.005. Epub 2014 Jun 17. PubMed

Grembowski D, Ralston JD, Anderson ML. Hemoglobin A1c, comorbid conditions and all-cause mortality in older patients with diabetes: a retrospective 9-year cohort study. Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 2014 Nov;106(2):373-82. doi: 10.1016/j.diabres.2014.07.017. Epub 2014 Jul 29. PubMed

Buist DS, Anderson ML, Smith RA, Carney PA, Miglioretti DL, Monsees BS, Sickles EA, Taplin SH, Geller BM, Yankaskas BC, Onega TL. Effect of radiologists' diagnostic work-up volume on interpretive performance. Radiology. 2014 Nov;273(2):351-64. doi: 10.1148/radiol.14132806. Epub 2014 Jun 24. PubMed

Murphy CC, Haddock NM, Anderson ML, Chubak J, Green BB. Longitudinal predictors of colorectal cancer screening among participants in a randomized controlled trial. Prev Med. 2014 Sep;66:123-30. doi: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2014.06.013. Epub 2014 Jun 15. PubMed

Dublin S, Anderson ML, Heckbert SR, Hubbard RA, Sonnen JA, Crane PK, Montine TJ, Larson EB. Neuropathologic changes associated with atrial fibrillation in a population-based autopsy cohort. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2014 May;69(5):609-15. doi: 10.1093/gerona/glt141. Epub 2013 Sep 28. PubMed

 

New findings

Senior adult male sitting at table taking blood pressure with a blood pressure machine

There’s no place like home … to track blood pressure

Research led by KPWHRI’s Beverly Green, MD, MPH, finds that patients prefer at-home monitoring of blood pressure. 

health care innovation

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Research helps our newest clinics build the future—now

Katie Coleman tells how Kaiser Permanente Washington research supports innovation at new clinics in Ballard and South Lake Union.

research into action

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Healthy Hearts Northwest helps small clinics improve care

A new study shows how a little supplemental support can result in big gains, especially in managing patients’ blood pressure.