Jennifer McClure, PhD

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“We create programs and tools to empower people and help them lead healthier lives. By doing so, we can reduce the need for health care and the growing burden of health care costs for all.”

Jennifer McClure, PhD

Director, Investigative Science; Senior Investigator, Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute

Biography

Jennifer McClure, PhD, is director of Investigative Science at Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute (KPWHRI). She is also a senior investigator and clinical psychologist whose research focuses on developing new interventions to reduce people’s risk of chronic disease and cancer or help them better manage existing chronic disease through:

  • Smoking cessation
  • Dietary improvement
  • Increased physical activity
  • Treatment adherence
  • Stress management
  • Better oral health
  • Informed decision-making

Much of Dr. McClure’s research emphasizes creating highly individualized behavioral treatments that can be disseminated on a population level, through health care systems and tobacco quitlines or directly to individuals via digital health tools, such as mobile health (mHealth) apps. Her goal is to design programs that are effective, convenient, engaging, and cost-effective, understanding that to make the leap from research to real world, interventions should meet these criteria.

Dr. McClure is best known for her research creating novel treatments for nicotine dependence, particularly interventions targeted to smokers who are ambivalent about quitting. These individuals may want to quit smoking some day, but are not yet ready to give up tobacco. Most smokers fall into this category, but few interventions are targeted to this important group. Her research has demonstrated the effectiveness of using proactive counseling and online interventions to motivate and support smoking cessation among ambivalent smokers. Her work has also shed light on the potential risks and benefits of using biological indicators of disease or disease risk to motivate quitting. Now she is developing two new mHealth apps to help ambivalent smokers kick the habit: one designed for anyone who smokes and one designed specifically for smokers living with HIV.

Dr. McClure’s collaborative research covers a range of topics from reducing sedentary behavior to comparing the effectiveness of various strategies for assessing and diagnosing high blood pressure.

In recognition of her scientific contributions, Dr. McClure was named a fellow in the Society of Behavioral Medicine (SBM) in 2013 and a fellow in the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco in 2018. In 2019 she joined the faculty of the Kaiser Permanente Bernard J Tyson School of Medicine as a professor in Health Systems Science. Dr. McClure is also an affiliate professor of health services at the University of Washington School of Public Health and an affiliate investigator in the Division of Public Health Sciences at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.

RESEARCH INTERESTS AND EXPERIENCE

  • Behavior Change & Behavioral Medicine

    Tobacco cessation; pharmocogenomics of nicotine addiction; treatment adherence; population-based behavior interventions; health risk communications; oral health promotion; dietary change; physical activity promotion; informed decision-making; psychoneuroimmunology; HIV

  • Health Informatics & Digital Health

    Development of eHealth and mHealth intervention tools

  • Mental Health

    Depression treatment and development of behavior change interventions for people with serious mental illness

  • Cancer

    Prevention

  • Chronic Illness Management

    HIV

  • Addictions

    Prevention and treatment

Recent publications

Watson NL, Heffner JL, Mull KE, McClure JB, Bricker JB. Which method of assessing depression and anxiety best predicts smoking cessation: screening instruments or self-reported conditions. Nicotine Tob Res. 2020 Jun 2. pii: ntaa099. doi: 10.1093/ntr/ntaa099. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

Grekin E, Beatty JE, McGoron L, Kugler KC, McClure JB, Pop DE, Ondersma SJ. Testing the efficacy of motivational strategies, empathic reflections, and lifelike features in a computerized intervention for alcohol use: a factorial trial. Psychol Addict Behav. 2019 Sep;33(6):511-519. doi: 10.1037/adb0000502. Epub 2019 Aug 22. PubMed

Pocobelli G, Ziebell R, Fujii M, Hutcheson KA, Chang S, McClure JB, Chubak J. Symptom burden in long-term survivors of head and neck cancer: patient-reported versus clinical data. EGEMS (Wash DC). 2019;7(1):25. doi: 10.5334/egems.271. PubMed

Heffner JL, Mull KE, Watson NL, McClure JB, Bricker JB. Long-term smoking cessation outcomes for sexual minority vs. non-minority smokers in a large randomized, controlled trial of two web-based interventions. Nicotine Tob Res. 2019 Jul 9. pii: 5530422. doi: 10.1093/ntr/ntz112. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

Watson NL, Heffner JL, Mull KE, McClure JB, Bricker JB. Comparing Treatment Acceptability and 12-Month Cessation Rates in Response to Web-Based Smoking Interventions Among Smokers Who Do and Do Not Screen Positive for Affective Disorders: Secondary Analysis. J Med Internet Res. 2019;21(6):e13500. doi: 10.2196/13500. PubMed

Matson TE, Anderson ML, Renz AD, Greenwood-Hickman MA, McClure JB, Rosenberg DE. Changes in self-reported health and psychosocial outcomes in older adults enrolled in sedentary behavior intervention study. Am J Health Promot. 2019 Apr 7:890117119841405. doi: 10.1177/0890117119841405. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

McClure JB, Anderson ML, Krakauer C, Blasi P, Bush T, Nelson J, Catz SL. Impact of a novel oral health promotion program on routine oral hygiene among socioeconomically disadvantaged smokers: results from a randomized semi-pragmatic trial. Transl Behav Med. 2019 Feb 12. pii: 5316179. doi: 10.1093/tbm/ibz009. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

McClure JB, Bricker J, Mull K, Heffner JL. Comparative-effectiveness of group-delivered acceptance and commitment therapy vs. cognitive behavioral therapy for smoking cessation: a randomized controlled trial. Nicotine Tob Res. 2020 Mar 16;22(3):354-362. doi: 10.1093/ntr/nty268. PubMed

Blasi PR, Krakauer C, Anderson ML, Nelson J, Bush T, Catz SL, McClure JB. Factors associated with future dental care utilization among low-income smokers overdue for dental visits. BMC Oral Health. 2018 Nov 1;18(1):183. doi: 10.1186/s12903-018-0646-8. PubMed

Heffner JL, Mull KE, Watson NL, McClure JB, Bricker JB. Smokers with bipolar disorder, other affective disorders, and no mental health conditions: comparison of baseline characteristics and success at quitting in a large 12-month behavioral intervention randomized trial. Drug Alcohol Depend. 2018 Oct 10;193:35-41. doi: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2018.08.034. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

 

Now recruiting

Adult male looking at phone screen with dog in lap

Volunteers needed for GEMS+ study

NIH-funded study will test a new health app for smokers living with HIV.

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. 

Behavioral Health

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Surviving an FFP: COVID-19

Dr. Jennifer McClure shares advice and resources for staying physically and emotionally well during the COVID-19 crisis, and beyond.

research

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Oral Health 4 Life: 10 years of research to improve smokers’ health and dental care

As Dr. Jennifer McClure completes the last of three innovative studies, she reflects on how the work began, the difference it may make, and what happens next.

healthy findings blog

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Can being accepting and mindful help you stop smoking?

Tobacco remains a public health priority. Dr. Jennifer McClure discusses her new findings comparing ’acceptance and commitment therapy’ to standard care.

Tobacco & e-cigarettes

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Combustible tobacco: Still public health enemy #1

Dr. Jennifer McClure applauds the American Cancer Society’s recent strike against tobacco that burns. And she unpacks its evidence-based stance on e-cigarettes.