Mixed Methods Research

Current Studies

Mi Health Mi Choice: Improving Contraceptive Care for Women With Medical Conditions

Justine P. Wu, M.D., M.P.H., Principal Investigator. Funded by National Institutes of Health (read more on Dr. Wu's award)

Adult women with chronic conditions have a higher rate of unintended pregnancy than adult women without chronic conditions. Chronic conditions and unintended pregnancy are both associated with pregnancy-related complications and adverse maternal and child health outcomes. Prior studies show that women with chronic conditions are not receiving adequate contraceptive counseling, particularly regarding highly effective contraceptive methods. There is an urgent need to improve contraceptive counseling and services for women with chronic conditions in order to decrease the rate of unintended pregnancy and improve reproductive health outcomes among this population. 


This mixed methods, multi-phase study will first 1.) identify key factors on the patient-, provider-, and practice-level that are critical to the design of a contraceptive intervention for women with chronic conditions in primary care. The research team, led by Wu, will then develop an interactive, web-based contraceptive decision aid for women with chronic conditions, their PCPs, and implementation in primary care. Finally, a pilot randomized controlled trial (RCT) will be conducted to measure the feasibility of the decision aid as a potential large-scale intervention.


Protocol Citation: Wu JP, Damschroder LJ, Fetters MD, et al. A Web-Based Decision Tool to Improve Contraceptive Counseling for Women With Chronic Medical Conditions: Protocol For a Mixed Methods Implementation Study. JMIR Research Protocols. 2018;7(4). doi:10.2196/resprot.9249.


Modeling Professional Attitudes and Teaching Humanistic Communication in Virtual Reality (MPathic VR)


Michael D. Fetters, M.D., M.P.H., M.A., Principal Investigator


Timothy C. Guetterman, PhD


Funded by The National Institutes of Health


The M-Pathic VR II project will rigorously evaluate the extent that the newly successful "virtual reality" software program (developed in Phase I) can enhance medical school curricula in professionalism, empathy, and in patient-centeredness (using verbal and non-verbal communication skills) as well as the ACGME competencies when treating a terminally ill cancer patient.


Telemonitoring Enhanced Support for Depression Self-Management


James E. Aikens, Ph.D., Principal Investigator


Funded by The National Institutes of Health


The goal of this study is to develop a telephone-based system called CarePartners to improve depression outcomes by training a family member or close friend to support the depressed person from long distance. This project will determine whether CarePartners is more effective than usual care at improving the patient’s depression symptoms and other key outcomes.


Telemonitoring Enhanced Informal Caregiving to Support Diabetes Self Management


James E. Aikens, Ph.D., Principal Investigator
Ananda Sen, Ph.D., Co-Investigator


Funded by National Institutes of Health


We propose a community-based RCT to test the hypothesis that providing formal support to "CarePartners" (CPs) (non-household family members) improves glycemic control, diabetes mellitus (DM)-related distress, and DM self-management.


Early Audiology Referral in Primary Care (EAR-PC): Improving Detection of Hearing Loss


Philip Zazove, M.D., Principal Investigator


Funded by the National Institutes of Health, National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, Department of Health and Human Services ($1,624,469)


Dr. Zazove is lead investigator of this R21/R33 study, which seeks to increase hearing loss screenings for patients 55 and older by utilizing electronic clinical management tools in primary care setting and multimedia. The MiChart research team has designed a Best Practice Alert (BPA) which notifies primary care providers (PCPs) of HL assessment opportunities and allows clinicians to refer directly and efficiently to audiology specialists. The multimedia project, guided by Micheleen Hashikawa, M.D., also created a video to address physicians’ mental models of hearing loss. The investigation has expanded to look at patients’ decision-making around hearing testing and adoption of hearing aids. The EAR-PC study has partnered with the Beaumont Family Medicine network and Elie Mulhem, M.D., Associate Professor, Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine to successfully include 5,500 patients in the pilot study. Dr. Zazove anticipates over 20,000 patients in the R33 phase.


The research is guided by three aims, to:


  • Evaluate whether the EAR-PC program increases PCP identification of patients with mild to moderate HL compared to baseline data.

  • Evaluate whether the EAR-PC program increases appropriate PCP referral of patients with mild to moderate HL to audiology specialists.

  • Utilize both qualitative and quantitative inquiry to investigate how successful PCPs implement the intervention, identifying processes and tools that will allow this project to successfully scale




Michigan Youth Health (MyHealth) – Training the Next Generation of Researchers


Melissa DeJonckeere, Ph.D., Principal Investigator
The Michigan Youth Health (MYHealth) Science Education Partnership Award (SEPA) program will foster researcher identity, science self-efficacy, scientific literacy, and leadership and teamwork self-efficacy among historically underrepresented high school students in Southeastern Michigan to increase persistence in science toward research careers. Participants, students in grades 9-11, are recruited through community partners such as the Washtenaw Intermediate School District, Wolverine Pathways, Edward Ginsberg Center for Community Service and Learning, and Center for Education Design, Evaluation & Research (CEDER). Students in the MYHealth Program will be trained as co-researchers and conduct a research project using the MyVoice text message poll of youth.


MYHealth is a Science Education Partnership Award funded by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences and National Institutes of Health (R25GM137361).