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Mariam Krikorian Atkinson, Ph.D.

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University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CAPhD05/2016Healthcare Management & Organization
University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CABA06/2006Business Economics, Pre-Medicine

Mariam Krikorian Atkinson, PhD, is an Assistant Professor in the Health Policy and Management department at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

Dr. Atkinson studies standardized versus customized interprofessional practice in the clinical setting, focusing on task automation and the use of an evidence base to guide decision-making among those of differing expertise. She examines when and why standardization is appropriate, and the influence of standardization on professional practice and patient outcomes. In one stream of her research, Dr. Atkinson analyzes how physicians determine who is in charge of particular patients and tasks, showing how standardization of these decisions has important implications for the quality and cost of care provided. Additionally, Dr. Atkinson has taken an in-depth study of the role of the hospitalist in relation to subspecialist physicians. Her work in this area illustrates the benefits and pitfalls of implementing novel roles like the hospitalist, and the influence formalization of this role has on an established group of subspecialist physicians.

Building on foundational principles in research on the sociology of professions, Dr. Atkinson draws from different theories on standardization versus customization, boundary work, interprofessional collaboration, and the coordination of expertise. She explores her research questions using both qualitative and quantitative methods: participant observation, interview, survey, and econometric analyses. A portion of her research was awarded Best Paper and published in Academy of Management Proceedings. Additionally, Dr. Atkinson's research has been supported by agencies such as the National Science Foundation (award 1459996).

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  1. Atkinson MK, Singer SJ. Managing Organizational Constraints in Innovation Teams: A Qualitative Study Across Four Health Systems. Med Care Res Rev. 2020 Jun 17; 1077558720925993. PMID: 32552540.
  2. Mariam Krikorian Atkinson, Mark A Schuster, Jeremy Y Feng, Temilola Akinola, Kathryn L Clark, Benjamin D Sommers. Adverse Events and Patient Outcomes Among Hospitalized Children Cared for by General Pediatricians vs Hospitalists. JAMA Network Open. 2018; 1(8):e185658-e185658.
  3. Atkinson MK, Schuster MA, Feng JY, Akinola T, Clark KL, Sommers BD. Adverse Events and Patient Outcomes Among Hospitalized Children Cared for by General Pediatricians vs Hospitalists. JAMA Netw Open. 2018 12 07; 1(8):e185658. PMID: 30646280.
  4. Krikorian ML, Growdon AS, Chien AT. Assessment of Hospitalist-Subspecialist Agreement About Who Should Be in Charge and Comparison With Actual Assignment Practices. Hosp Pediatr. 2018 08; 8(8):479-485. PMID: 30049683.
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Funded by the NIH National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences through its Clinical and Translational Science Awards Program, grant number UL1TR002541.