Susan Shortreed, PhD

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“By using rich data sources such as electronic health records, we can begin to identify which treatments will work best for which people.”

Susan M. Shortreed, PhD

Senior Biostatistics Investigator, Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute

Biography

Susan Shortreed, PhD, uses statistics and machine learning methods to address health science problems, with a special emphasis on analyzing complex longitudinal data. She develops and evaluates statistical approaches for observational data, and works to improve the design and analyses of studies that use data collected from electronic health care records. She is leading a project to develop statistical methods for constructing personalized treatment strategies using data captured from electronic health records.

Dr. Shortreed earned her PhD in statistics from the University of Washington. Then she spent two years in the Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, and two years in the School of Computer Science at McGill University in Montreal, Canada. Dr. Shortreed has collaborated with scientists in a broad range of areas including alcohol use, cancer screening, and medication safety. She now works alongside researchers in mental and behavioral health, evaluating and comparing treatments for chronic pain and depression, and interventions to prevent suicide. Dr. Shortreed is an investigator with the Mental Health Research Network, designing studies to address important public health concerns, such as determining which antidepressant medications work best for which patients and developing risk prediction algorithms to identify individuals who may be at increased risk for suicidal behavior.

Dr. Shortreed is also an affiliate associate professor of biostatistics at the University of Washington School of Public Health. She served on the executive board for the American Statistical Association’s Section on Statistics in Epidemiology and the editorial board of the Journal of the Royal Statistical Society, Series C: Applied Statistics.

Research interests and experience

  • Biostatistics

    Design and analysis of studies that use data collected from electronic health records; analysis of complex longitudinal data; methods for constructing personalized treatment strategies, computational statistics and algorithms; machine learning; variable selection methods.

    Medication Use & Patient Safety

    Biostatistics; machine learning; using data collected from electronic health records to study rare adverse events; opioid safety; medication safety in pregnancy.

  • Mental Health

    Biostatistics; treatment for chronic depression; suicide prevention; developing personalized treatment strategies; developing risk prediction models.

Recent publications

Sherman KJ, Walker RL, Saunders K, Shortreed SM, Parchman M, Hansen RN, Thakral M, Ludman EJ, Dublin S, Von Korff M. Doctor-patient trust among chronic pain patients on chronic opioid therapy after opioid risk reduction initiatives: a survey. J Am Board Fam Med. 2018;31(4):578-587. doi: 10.3122/jabfm.2018.04.180021. PubMed

Simon GE, Johnson E, Lawrence JM, Rossom RC, Ahmedani B, Lynch FL, Beck A, Waitzfelder B, Ziebell R, Penfold RB, Shortreed SM. Predicting suicide attempts and suicide deaths following outpatient visits using electronic health records. Am J Psychiatry. 2018 May 24:appiajp201817101167. doi: 10.1176/appi.ajp.2018.17101167. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

Coleman KJ, Johnson E, Ahmedani BK, Beck A, Rossom RC, Shortreed SM, Simon GE. Predicting suicide attempts for racial and ethnic groups of patients during routine clinical care. Suicide Life Threat Behav. 2019 Jun;49(3):724-734. doi: 10.1111/sltb.12454. Epub 2018 Mar 24. PubMed

Thakral M, Walker RL, Saunders K, Shortreed SM, Dublin S, Parchman M, Hansen RN, Ludman E, Sherman KJ, Von Korff M. Impact of opioid dose reduction and risk mitigation initiatives on chronic opioid therapy patients at higher risk for opioid-related adverse outcomes. Pain Med. 2017 Dec 6. pii: 4689184. doi: 10.1093/pm/pnx293.[Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

Thakral M, Walker RL, Saunders K, Shortreed SM, Dublin S, Parchman M, Hansen RN, Ludman E, Sherman KJ, Von Korff M. Impact of opioid dose reduction initiatives on chronic opioid therapy patients at higher risk for opioid-related adverse outcomes. Pain Med. 2017 Dec 6. doi: 10.1093/pm/pnx293. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

Zeber JE, Coleman KJ, Fischer H, Yoon TK, Ahmedani BK, Beck A, Hubley S, Imel ZE, Rossom RC, Shortreed SM, Stewart C, Waitzfelder BE, Simon GE. The impact of race and ethnicity on rates of return to psychotherapy for depression. Depress Anxiety. 2017 Dec;34(12):1157-1163. doi: 10.1002/da.22696. Epub 2017 Nov 2. PubMed

Simon GE, Johnson E, Stewart C, Rossom RC, Beck A, Coleman KJ, Waitzfelder B, Penfold R, Operskalski BH, Shortreed SM. Does patient adherence to antidepressant medication actually vary between physicians?  J Clin Psychiatry. 2018 May/Jun;79(3). pii: 16m11324. doi: 10.4088/JCP.16m11324. PubMed

Berger D, Lapham GT, Shortreed SM, Hawkins EJ, Rubinsky AD, Williams EC, Achtmeyer CE, Kivlahan DR, Bradley KA. Increased rates of documented alcohol counseling in primary care: more counseling or just more documentation? J Gen Intern Med. 2018 Mar;33(3):268-274. doi: 10.1007/s11606-017-4163-2. Epub 2017 Oct 18. PubMed

Thakral M, Walker RL, Saunders K, Shortreed SM, Parchman M, Hansen RN, Ludman E, Sherman KJ, Dublin S, Von Korff M. Comparing pain and depressive symptoms of chronic opioid therapy patients receiving dose reduction and risk mitigation initiatives to usual care. J Pain. 2018 Jan;19(1):111-120. doi: 10.1016/j.jpain.2017.09.006. Epub 2017 Oct 13. PubMed

Von Korff M, Walker RL, Saunders K, Shortreed SM, Thakral M, Parchman M, Hansen RN, Ludman E, Sherman KJ, Dublin S. Prevalence of prescription opioid use disorder among chronic opioid therapy patients after health plan opioid dose and risk reduction initiatives. Int J Drug Policy. 2017 Jun 27;46:90-98. doi: 10.1016/j.drugpo.2017.05.053. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

 

Research

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New findings on treating hypertension in pregnancy

A study led by Dr. Sascha Dublin finds similar outcomes for 3 hypertension medications, filling an evidence gap.

COVID-19

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Greater infection risks linked to COVID-19 disparities

New work by Susan Shortreed, PhD, finds infection risks drive worse outcomes for some racial and ethnic groups.

Drugs, diabetes, disparities

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Studying COVID-19 risk and outcomes

Dr. Sascha Dublin tells how studies of KP electronic health record data can improve COVID-19 treatment and prevention.

news

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Mentorship awards go to Jane Anau and Dr. Jessica Chubak

The honor underscores the institute’s commitment to a work environment that fosters employees’ growth.