Laurel D. Hansell, MA, MPH


“My work focuses on understanding the perspectives and experiences of diverse groups and stakeholders and amplifying the patient voice.”

Laurel D. Hansell, MA, MPH

Collaborative Scientist, Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute


Laurel Hansell brings training and expertise as both an applied anthropologist and a public health researcher to her work, with a focus on qualitative research and stakeholder engagement. 

In her current role as a collaborative scientist at Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute (KPWHRI), she provides qualitative methodological expertise to a variety of projects and topic areas and contributes to data collection and analysis. She has conducted individual interviews with patients and health care providers on numerous studies, including SUAY (Safer Use of Antipsychotics in Youth), BP-CHECK, and Back on Track.  She has also conducted focus groups and member check activities on study such as BP-CHECK and Back In Action.

Laurel joined KPWHRI in 2018 as an implementation and evaluation associate and was promoted to collaborative scientist in 2022, having taken on roles with increasing responsibility using her qualitative research expertise.

Laurel earned a master’s degree in public health with a focus on health services from the University of Washington. She also received a master’s in applied anthropology from the University of South Florida and a bachelor’s in anthropology from Southern Illinois University.

In her free time, Laurel enjoys exploring local parks and attending Seattle Storm and Reign sporting events.

Areas of research focus

Recent Publications

Tran MN, Bacci JL, Dillon-Sumner L, Odegard P. Enhancing adult immunization care by community pharmacists: A qualitative analysis of Project VACCINATE. J Am Pharm Assoc. 2020 Oct 16:S1544-3191(20)30449-0. doi: 10.1016/j.japh.2020.08.036. PubMed

Averill MM, Dillon-Sumner L, Stergachis A, Sconyers J, Summerside N, Brazg T, Errett N. Integrating public health students into interprofessional education. J Interprof Care. 2020 May-Jun;34(3):427-430. doi: 10.1080/13561820.2019.1690436. Epub 2019 Dec 21. 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


Practical findings


Is blood pressure reading better at home or clinic?

Home blood pressure monitoring shown to be an excellent alternative for making new diagnoses of hypertension.



HEAL responds to double crisis: Opioids and COVID-19

Health care is increasingly online—KPWHRI is studying telehealth options for opioid use disorder and chronic pain.