Medical anthropologist Clarissa Hsu, PhD, has been doing Kaiser Permanente research since 2001, and became an official member of the faculty in 2011. She conducts research using a holistic approach that unites the cultural, social, and political factors that shape health and health care. Dr. Hsu was one of the first researchers to receive funding from the national Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), which supports studies on issues that are a high priority for patients, caregivers, and clinicians. PCORI-funded research follows an innovative model, including patient input at all steps in the research process. Dr. Hsu and her team christened her PCORI project LINCC: Learning to Integrate Neighborhoods and Clinical Care.
The LINCC project designed, piloted, and evaluated a new primary care role: connecting patients to community resources. This role has recently been spread throughout Kaiser Permanente Washington. LINCC also resulted in the creation of valuable health care resources, including an article on having patients as co-investigators, as well as a guide and set of care-design templates for engaging a cohort of patients in co-designing care.
Dr. Hsu is also at the forefront of other prevalent health issues, working to document, design, evaluate, and disseminate new approaches and best practices. She seeks to help chronic pain patients taper off and find alternatives to opioids. She also works to improve how care delivery systems interact with patients and family members around sensitive and complex topics such as dementia diagnoses, use of antipsychotics in youth, blood pressure diagnosis and control, cannabis use, and childhood vaccinations.
Dr. Hsu is an affiliate professor at the University of Washington School of Public Health.
Patient experiences with complementary and alternative medicine
Matson TE, Carrell DS, Bobb JF, Cronkite DJ, Oliver MM, Luce C, Ghitza UE, Hsu CW, Campbell CI, Browne KC, Binswanger IA, Saxon AJ, Bradley KA, Lapham GT. Prevalence of medical cannabis use and associated health conditions documented in electronic health records among primary care patients in Washington state. JAMA Netw Open. 2021;4(5):e219375. doi: 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2021.9375. PubMed
Crabtree BF, Howard J, Miller WL, Cromp D, Hsu C, Coleman K, Austin B, Flinter M, Tuzzio L, Wagner EH. Leading innovative practice: leadership attributes in LEAP practices. Milbank Q. 2020 May 13. doi: 10.1111/1468-0009.12456. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed
Hsu C, Cruz S, Placzek H, Chapdelaine M, Levin S, Gutierrez F, Standish S, Maki I, Carl M, Orantes MR, Newman D, Cheadle A. Patient perspectives on addressing social needs in primary care using a screening and resource referral intervention. J Gen Intern Med. 2019 Dec 2. pii: 10.1007/s11606-019-05397-6. doi: 10.1007/s11606-019-05397-6. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed
Jones SW, Parchman ML, Hsu CW, Austin B, Flinter M, Cromp D, Wagner E, McDonald S. Measuring attributes of team functioning in primary care settings: development of the TEAMS tool. J Interprof Care. 2020 May-Jun;34(3):407-413. doi: 10.1080/13561820.2019.1670628. Epub 2019 Oct 1. PubMed
Gray MF, Sweeney J, Nickel W, Minniti M, Coleman K, Johnson K, Mroz T, Forss B, Reid R, Frosch D, Hsu C. Function of the medical team quarterback: patient, family, and physician perspectives on team care coordination in patient- and family-centered primary care. Perm J. 2019; 23:18.147. doi: 10.7812/TPP/18.147. Epub 2019 Aug 26. PubMed
Parchman ML, Anderson ML, Coleman K, Michaels LA, Schuttner L, Conway C, Hsu C, Fagnan LJ. Assessing quality improvement capacity in primary care practices. BMC Fam Pract. 2019 Jul 25;20(1):103. doi: 10.1186/s12875-019-1000-1. PubMed
Coleman K, Wagner EH, Ladden MD, Flinter M, Cromp D, Hsu C, Crabtree BF, McDonald S. Developing emerging leaders to support team-based primary care. J Ambul Care Manage. 2019 Jun 4. doi: 10.1097/JAC.0000000000000277. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed
Hertel E, Cheadle A, Matthys J, Coleman K, Gray M, Robbins M, Tufte J, Hsu C. Engaging patients in primary care design: An evaluation of a novel approach to codesigning care. Health Expect. 2019 May 27. doi: 10.1111/hex.12909 [Epub ahead of print] PubMed
Eaves ER, Hsu CW, DeBar LL, Livingston CJ, Ocker LE, McDonald SJ, Dillon-Sumner L, Ritenbaugh C. Whole systems within whole systems: the Oregon health plan's expansion of services for back and neck pain. J Altern Complement Med. 2019 Mar;25(S1):S61-S68. doi: 10.1089/acm.2018.0431. PubMed
Hsu C, Gray MF, Murray L, Abraham M, Nickel W, Sweeney JM, Frosch DL, Mroz TM, Ehrlich K, Johnson B, Reid RJ. Actions and processes that patients, family members, and physicians associate with patient- and family-centered care. BMC Fam Pract. 2019 Feb 25;20(1):35. doi: 10.1186/s12875-019-0918-7. PubMed
Can lessons from Immunity Community help build acceptance of COVID-19 vaccines? Clarissa Hsu, PhD, thinks so.
The MacColl Center’s LEAP project identifies 11 features of effective leadership at primary care practices.
Study ends but benefits for Kaiser Permanente members continue — thanks to a new support role in the regions’ clinics, writes Dr. Clarissa Hsu.
Partnering with Patients as Equals in Co-Designing Primary Care: Examples and Tools from the LINCC Project
Dr. Clarissa Hsu writes about how her team equalized power between patients and staff in a quality improvement project.