Jennifer F. Bobb, PhD

Jennifer Bobb

I am excited about the potential for scientific discovery in the era of big data. With critical scientific thinking and advanced statistical methods, we can leverage rich data sources to improve public health.

Jennifer F. Bobb, PhD

Associate Biostatistics Investigator, Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute

Biography

Jennifer Bobb, PhD, aims to apply rigorous statistical methods to address important problems in public health. She is interested in statistical issues that occur when data that were not originally collected for research purposes, such as administrative claims data or electronic health records, are used for addressing scientific questions relevant to clinical practice and health policy.

At Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute (KPWHRI), Dr. Bobb collaborates with scientists across a broad range of research areas, including mental and behavioral health and social determinants of health. As an investigator with the Health Care Systems Addictions Research Network, she provides statistical leadership on pragmatic clinical trials at Kaiser Permanente Washington and other health systems. She is the lead statistician on a stepped wedge trial evaluating how mental health and wellness integration at Kaiser Permanente Washington affects clinical care and health outcomes, as well as a multi-site pragmatic trial to evaluate a program for increasing medication treatment for opioid use disorders within primary care settings. She has developed statistical guidance to address methodological challenges introduced by pragmatic trials that leverage electronic health records data to define study eligibility and outcomes.

With expertise in environmental biostatistics, Dr. Bobb has led large-scale epidemiological investigations on the health effects of exposure to extreme heat and air pollution. She developed flexible modeling approaches for estimating the health effects of multi-pollutant mixtures that broadly apply to settings where large numbers of exposures may interact or have complex relationships with health, along with publicly available software implementing these methods. In recent work, she is collaborating on the Moving to Health study, which explores whether changes in the built environment, such as access to healthy foods and walkability, affect long-term weight and diabetes management.

Dr. Bobb is an affiliate assistant professor in biostatistics at the University of Washington and an associate editor of the journal Biostatistics. She serves on the Committee for Funded Research of the American Statistical Association and is a member of the International Biometric Society. Before joining KPWHRI, Dr. Bobb completed her PhD in biostatistics at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in 2012, followed by a postdoctoral fellowship at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

Research interests and experience

  • Biostatistics

    Bayesian methods; analysis of observational data; pragmatic trial design and analysis; analysis of spatial-temporal data

    Health Services & Economics

    Biostatistics; implementation science

  • Mental Health

    Biostatistics; behavioral health; alcohol and substance use disorders

    Social Determinants of Health

    Biostatistics; built environment

  • Environmental Health

    Health effects of air pollution, extreme weather events; statistical methods for complex environmental mixtures

  • Addictions

    Prevention and treatment

Recent publications

Braciszewski JM, Idu AE, Yarborough BJH, Stumbo SP, Bobb JF, Bradley KA, Rossom RC, Murphy MT, Binswanger IA, Campbell CI, Glass JE, Matson TE, Lapham GT, Loree AM, Barbosa-Leiker C, Hatch MA, Tsui JI, Arnsten JH, Stotts A, Horigian V, Hutcheson R, Bart G, Saxon AJ, Thakral M, Ling Grant D, Pflugeisen CM, Usaga I, Madziwa LT, Silva A, Boudreau DM. Sex differences in comorbid mental and substance use disorders among primary care patients with opioid use disorder. Psychiatr Serv. 2022 Jun 16:appips202100665. doi: 10.1176/appi.ps.202100665. Online ahead of print. PubMed

Lapham GT, Matson TE, Carrell DS, Bobb JF, Luce C, Oliver MM, Ghitza UE, Hsu C, Browne KC, Binswanger IA, Campbell CI, Saxon AJ, Vandrey R, Schauer GL, Pacula RL, Horberg MA, Bailey SR, McClure EA, Bradley KA. Comparison of medical cannabis use reported on a confidential survey vs documented in the electronic health record among primary care patients. JAMA Netw Open. 2022 May 2;5(5):e2211677. doi: 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2022.11677. PubMed

Devick KL, Bobb JF, Mazumdar M, Claus Henn B, Bellinger DC, Christiani DC, Wright RO, Williams PL, Coull BA, Valeri L. Bayesian kernel machine regression-causal mediation analysis. Stat Med. 2022 Jan 7. doi: 10.1002/sim.9255. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

Richards JE, Boggs JM, Rowhani-Rahbar A, Kuo E, Betz ME, Bobb JF, Simon GE. Patient-reported firearm access prior to suicide death. JAMA Netw Open. 2022 Jan 4;5(1):e2142204. doi: 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2021.42204. PubMed

Carrell DS, Cronkite DJ, Shea M, Oliver M, Luce C, Matson TE, Bobb JF, Hsu C, Binswanger IA, Browne KC, Saxon AJ, McCormack J, Jelstrom E, Ghitza UE, Campbell CI, Bradley KA, Lapham GT. Clinical documentation of patient-reported medical cannabis use in primary care: toward scalable extraction using natural language processing methods. Subst Abus. 2022;43(1):917-924. doi: 10.1080/08897077.2021.1986767. PubMed

Li F, Tian Z, Bobb J, Papadogeorgou G, Li F. Clarifying selection bias in cluster randomized trials. Clin Trials. 2022 Feb;19(1):33-41. doi: 10.1177/17407745211056875. Epub 2021 Dec 11. PubMed

 

M2H study

Weight-gain-residential-relocation_M2H-study_1col.jpg

Can where you move impact future weight gain?

A new study finds that moving from low- to high-density neighborhoods might be related to reductions in weight gain.

Suicide prevention

Doctor and patient discussing mental health form

Most mental health patients answer firearm question

Study shows patients will usually answer a question about firearm access, providing key information for suicide prevention.

Research

urban setting apartments and skyscrapers obesity and the built environment

Built environment plays little role in weight gain

New research suggests fast food and other aspects of built environments don’t affect weight, contrary to earlier findings.

healthy communities

Moving-to-Health-Study_1col.jpg

How should we study the health of neighborhoods?

UW/KPWHRI research team confers with King County organizations at its "Moving to Health" Summit, sparking new collaborations.