Thomas Jefferson University

Larson, Sharon

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Sharon Larson

Sharon Larson, PhD

Contact Dr. Larson

MLH Ctr. for Population Health Research
100 East Lancaster Avenue
Wynnewood, PA 19096

(484) 476-3914
(484) 476-8533 fax


PhD, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Post-doctoral Fellowship, Johns Hopkins University

University Appointments

Research Professor, Jefferson College of Population Health
Professor and Executive Director, Main Line Health Center for Population Health Research at Lankenau Institute for Medical Research

Research & Practice Interests

Mental Health
Substance Abuse Issues
Access to and Utilization of Care
Patient-Centered and Patient-Reported Outcomes
Survey Study Design and Survey Deployment
Evaluation and Performance Assessment
Mixed Methods Approaches to Gathering and Analyzing Data
Community-Focused Health Studies


Dr. Sharon Larson is a population health researcher. Dr. Larson earned her PhD and Master of Arts degrees in Sociology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She completed a post-doctoral fellowship in Psychiatric Epidemiology at Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health in the department of Mental Health. 

Dr. Larson served as the acting Chair of the Department of Epidemiology and Health Services Research during the department’s inaugural year in the Geisinger Health system. She also served as the Director of Behavioral Health Services Research and the Director of Research Training for the system’s new Psychiatry Residency program. Dr. Larson was co-PI on the PCORI-funded PATH network, a clinical data research network (CDRN), and helped to develop research partnerships with other members of the network. She served as Geisinger Health System’s board member for the Health Care System Research Network (HCSRN), a national research organization of integrated health systems, and led the organization’s work in research mentoring. Dr. Larson was co-PI on a federally funded Beacon grant to expand the health information exchange and promote the utility of these exchanges for case management.

Dr. Larson was the Director the division of Evaluation, Analysis and Quality in the Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. She also served as the acting Director of the Division of Surveillance and Data Collection. In these roles she was responsible for oversight of teams producing the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, the Treatment Episode Data set, and other data systems. She served as the editor for reports generated from these data sets and served as SAMHSA's Associate Director for Science.


Most Recent Peer-Reviewed Publications

  1. Interprofessional training in developmental and behavioral health within a pediatric residency program: An organizational systems case study
  2. Caring for trafficked and unidentified patients in the EHR shadows: Shining a light by sharing the data
  3. Burden of Multiple Chronic Conditions among Patients with Urological Cancer
  4. Introduction to Special Section: Behavioral Health and Disasters—Planning for the Next Time
  5. Religiosity and Behavioral Health Outcomes of Adolescents Living in Disaster-Vulnerable Areas
  6. Behavioral Health in the Gulf Coast Region Following the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill: Findings from Two Federal Surveys
  7. Challenges to care coordination posed by the use of multiple health IT applications
  8. Body mass index and the built and social environments in children and adolescents using electronic health records
  9. Mental health experiences and needs among primary care providers treating OEF/OIF veterans: Preliminary findings from the Geisinger veterans initiative
  10. Rural versus urban residence mitigates the effects of telemedicine on exercise capacity
  11. Erratum: Rural and urban characteristics impact cardiovascular risk reduction (J Cardiopulm Rehabil Prev. (2010) 30: 5 (299-308)
  12. Rural and urban characteristics impact cardiovascular risk reduction
  13. Drug use patterns and trends in rural communities
  14. Religious involvement and the use of mental health care
  15. Preventive health examinations: A comparison along the rural-urban continuum
  16. Women's health care utilization and expenditures
  17. The field must capitalize on prevalence data
  18. Datapoints: Use of prescription psychiatric drugs and religious service attendance
  19. Rural-urban differences in employment-related health insurance
  20. Depressive disorder as a long-term antecedent risk factor for incident back pain: A 13-year follow-up study from the Baltimore Epidemiological catchment area sample
  21. Rural-urban differences in usual source of care and ambulatory service use: analyses of national data using Urban Influence Codes.
  22. Faculty assessment and the scholarship of teaching and learning: Knowledge available/knowledge needed
  23. Depressive disorder, dysthymia, and risk of stroke: Thirteen-year follow-up from the Baltimore Epidemiologic Catchment Area Study