Jennifer L. Wolff, Ph.D. is an assistant professor at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of PublicHealth who is trained in gerontology and health services and outcomes research. This proposed NIMHMentored Research Scientist Career Development (KOI)award will provide the necessary support to facilitate Dr. Wolffs successful transition to an independent investigator in the field of geriatric mentalhealth services intervention research. Dr. Wolffs ultimate goal is to develop a program of research to optimize family involvement in late-life depression care processes, and in doing so, to facilitate improved mental health and quality of life outcomes among older adults living with depression. The proposed training plan includes a series of learning activities to increase the candidate's knowledge of late-life depression, its treatment,and models of depression care delivery, as well as to develop new skills in health education and communication research and the conduct of clinicaltrials. Buildingon these learning activities,two types of research activities will be simultaneously pursued throughout the course of the award. First, secondary analyses will be undertaken to elucidatethe influence of family involvementon late-life depression diagnosisandtreatment from two points of departure: a population-based orientation using a nationallyrepresentative survey and linked administrative claims (Aim 1), and an individual patient perspective through examinationof existing audio-taped encounters of patient-(family)-physician office visits (Aim 2). The second set of research activities involves primary data collection. Focus groups will be conducted with depressed older adults, their families, and primary care health professionals to ascertain facilitativeand counterproductive behaviors assumed by family in depression care processes (Aim 3). Lastly, building on knowledge gained from Aims 1- 3, an interventionthat seeks to optimize family involvement in depression care processes will be developed and pilot tested (Aim 4). The proposed training plan and research aims are designed to provide Dr. Wolff with the additionalexperience and resources necessary to support the submissionof a successful R01 grant to rigorously test the efficacy of this intervention by the end of the award period.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Research Scientist Development Award - Research & Training (K01)
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Mental Health Services in MH Specialty Settings (SRSP)
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Chavez, Mark
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Johns Hopkins University
Public Health & Prev Medicine
Schools of Public Health
United States
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Wolff, Jennifer L; Roter, Debra L; Barron, Jeremy et al. (2014) A tool to strengthen the older patient-companion partnership in primary care: results from a pilot study. J Am Geriatr Soc 62:312-9
Boyd, Cynthia M; Wolff, Jennifer L; Giovannetti, Erin et al. (2014) Healthcare task difficulty among older adults with multimorbidity. Med Care 52 Suppl 3:S118-25
Wolff, Jennifer L; Spillman, Brenda (2014) Older adults receiving assistance with physician visits and prescribed medications and their family caregivers: prevalence, characteristics, and hours of care. J Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci 69 Suppl 1:S65-72
Giovannetti, Erin R; Wolff, Jennifer L; Xue, Qian-Li et al. (2012) Difficulty assisting with health care tasks among caregivers of multimorbid older adults. J Gen Intern Med 27:37-44
Wolff, Jennifer L; Boyd, Cynthia M; Gitlin, Laura N et al. (2012) Going it together: persistence of older adults' accompaniment to physician visits by a family companion. J Am Geriatr Soc 60:106-12
Wolff, Jennifer L; Roter, Debra L (2012) Older adults' mental health function and patient-centered care: does the presence of a family companion help or hinder communication? J Gen Intern Med 27:661-8
Wolff, Jennifer L; Roter, Debra L (2011) Family presence in routine medical visits: a meta-analytical review. Soc Sci Med 72:823-31
Boyd, Cynthia M; Leff, Bruce; Wolff, Jennifer L et al. (2011) Informing clinical practice guideline development and implementation: prevalence of coexisting conditions among adults with coronary heart disease. J Am Geriatr Soc 59:797-805