Harvard Catalyst Profiles

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Ashley O'Donoghue, Ph.D.


BA05/2015Economics & Mathematics

Dr. Ashley L. O'Donoghue is an Instructor in Medicine at Harvard Medical School and an Economist at the Center for Healthcare Delivery Science at BIDMC, where she leads the data analytics team and specializes in quasi-experimental designs and econometric methods for causal inference. She received a PhD in economics in 2020 and a BA in economics and mathematics in 2015.

Dr. O'Donoghue works on a variety of healthcare delivery research projects. Her primary research interests are improving access to outpatient care and reducing barriers to safe transitions between inpatient and outpatient settings, especially for behavioral health and perinatal patients. She is particularly interested in the initiation of substance use disorder treatment during the perinatal period. Her research has been featured in National Geographic, NPR, Forbes, and Freakonomics Radio, among other outlets.

Dr. O'Donoghue also serves as a Volunteer Case Reviewer for the Department of Children & Families (DCF) Foster Care Review Unit, which helps plan for the future of children placed in foster care and group homes in Massachusetts and connects them with services in the community.

Available: 04/01/24, Expires: 09/01/24

Our research center is investigating transitions of care for patients throughout the healthcare system, which represents a period of clinical vulnerability for patients. This project specifically focuses on transitions in care for behavioral health patients, especially during periods of care disruptions, both from churn in insurance plans and behavioral health care teams. The project will examine Massachusetts behavioral health patients as a whole, in addition to two targeted case studies on perinatal behavioral health patients and aging behavioral health patients. The student will collaborate with a team of physician-scientists, biostatisticians, economists, machine-learning experts, and research assistants to further their educational and research goals, including designing and developing a project; manipulating large, complex claims databases; conducting and interpreting data analyses; summarizing results in tables and figures; and clearly communicating complex methods and findings with diverse audiences. Mentorship will be provided remotely throughout the project via 1:1 discussions, lab meetings, and overall guidance. The duration of the role can be flexible.

The research activities and funding listed below are automatically derived from NIH ExPORTER and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing items. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.
  1. (Stevens J) Sep 1, 2020 - Aug 31, 2022
    Quantifying secondary health impacts of COVID-19
    Role: Co-Investigator
  2. (Stevens J) Jul 1, 2017 - Jun 30, 2021
    Doris Duke Charitable Foundation
    A new approach to patient safety: identifying risky clinical states to reduce preventable harms for hospitalized patients
    Role: Co-Investigator

Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.
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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.