Julie Richards, MPH

“My hope is that ‘mental health’ becomes less about ‘mental’ and more about ‘health’ as we continue to learn how to integrate care for depression, alcohol and drug use into routine health care.”

Julie Richards, MPH

Research Associate, Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute

Areas of focus:

  • Suicide Prevention
  • Alcohol and Drug Use
  • Mental Health
  • Implementation Research


Julie Richards has a particular interest in research designed to improve care for stigmatized conditions. She has applied these interests in a broad range of research projects related to

  • sexually transmitted disease,
  • depression,
  • smoking cessation, and
  • suicide and substance use.

Julie is also currently enrolled in the University of Washington Health Services PhD program, concentrating in Health Systems Research, and planning to complete the program in 2018.

Julie is currently engaged in research projects on suicide prevention as well as alcohol use, funded by NIMH, NIAAA, and the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. She is a co-investigator on a project seeking to understand suicide attempts following patient reports of no ideation (SRG-0-150-13), and she helps manage Dr. Greg Simon’s large pragmatic trial of population-based programs to prevent suicide attempt (UH3 MH092201). She also manages Dr. Katharine Bradley’s recently completed trial of a collaborative care intervention for primary care patients with alcohol use disorders in the VA (R01 AA018702).

Julie is also involved in a large-scale project evaluating the implementation of routine annual screening for depression, alcohol, marijuana and drug use across all 25 Kaiser Permanente Washington primary care clinics (funded in part by AHRQ R18 HS023173-01) and data analyses evaluating whether clinical alcohol screening can be used to monitor drinking outcomes in HIV+ patients (R21 AA022866-012015).

Research interests and experience

  • Behavior Change

    Alcohol and drug misuse; tobacco cessation

  • Mental Health

    Depression; alcohol and drug use disorders; suicide prevention; self-management

  • Preventive Medicine

    Public and population health; screening effectiveness and uptake; evidence-based practice recommendations


Recent Publications

Williams EC, Lapham GT, Shortreed SM, Rubinsky AD, Bobb JF, Bensley KM, Catz SL, Richards JE, Bradley KA. Among patients with unhealthy alcohol use, those with HIV are less likely than those without to receive evidence-based alcohol-related care: a national VA study. Drug Alcohol Depend. 2017 Mar 6;174:113-120. doi: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2017.01.018. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

Richards JE, Bane E, Fullerton SM, Ludman EJ, Jarvik G. Allocation of resources to communication of research result summaries: biobank participant perspectives. J Empir Res Hum Res Ethics. 2016 Sep 8. pii: 1556264616667126. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

Ludman EJ, Simon GE, Grothaus LC, Richards J, Whiteside U, Stewart C. Organized self-management support services for chronic depressive symptoms: a randomized controlled trial. Psychiatr Serv. 2016 Jan 1;67(1):29-36. doi: 10.1176/appi.ps.201400295. Epub 2015 Aug 17.

Simon GE, Beck A, Rossom R, Richards J, Kirlin B, King D, Shulman L, Ludman EJ, Penfold R, Shortreed SM, Whiteside U. Population-based outreach versus care as usual to prevent suicide attempt: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial. Trials. 2016 Sep 15;17(1):452. doi: 10.1186/s13063-016-1566-z. PubMed

Lapham GT, Rubinsky AD, Shortreed SM, Hawkins EJ, Richards J, Williams EC, Berger D, Chavez LJ, Kivlahan DR, Bradley KA. Comparison of provider-documented and patient-reported brief intervention for unhealthy alcohol use in VA outpatients. Drug Alcohol Depend. 2015 Aug 1;153:159-66. doi: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2015.05.027. Epub 2015 May 27. PubMed


healthy findings blog

Team care for teen depression is found cost-effective

Dr. Evette Ludman describes how collaborative care pays off for adolescents who have depression.

Read it in Healthy Findings.

KPWHRI In the Media

Skin cancer screening

Does skin cancer screening work?

OUP blog, Nov. 1, 2016