Advice To Young Researchers: Don't Find Your Niche

6 April 2018 02:33 PM   •   Greg Simon   •   6 comments

Researchers focused on narrower questions are following the standard advice to all young mental health or health services researchers: Find your niche.

When does caring cross over into creepy?

6 March 2018 01:59 PM   •   Greg Simon   •   1 comment

A recent news article about the European Union’s new privacy rules prompted me to think more about population-based suicide prevention programs. Caring outreach that respects privacy is a difficult balance.

Alexa, should I increase my dose of Celexa?

5 February 2018 09:38 AM   •   Greg Simon   •   0 comments

The evolution of depression care management programs can be described in terms of task shifting. Initial Collaborative Care programs actually shifted some tasks up to specialty providers. Our MHRN Automated Outreach pilot project will take that task shifting one step further.

There might be no fish. But again, well, there might!

8 January 2018 01:32 PM   •   Greg Simon   •   2 comments

“Young man,” laughed the farmer, “You’re sort of a fool! You’ll never catch fish in McElligot’s Pool! The pool is too small. And, you might as well know it. When people have junk, here’s the place that they throw it.”

But My Patients Really Are More Difficult!

7 December 2017 07:14 AM   •   Greg Simon   •   0 comments

Comparisons of the quality or outcomes of care across providers or facilities often meet the objection: “But my patients really are more difficult!”

Do You Believe An Algorithm, Or Your Own Lying Eyes?

7 November 2017 09:45 AM   •   Greg Simon   •   0 comments

Our clinicians might wonder how an algorithm could outperform a face-to-face conversation. Out in the wider world, trust in algorithms and big data is not having a good year. I jokingly refer to this as “The Richard Pryor Problem,”...

Are we river pilots or rent seekers?

9 October 2017 02:58 PM   •   Greg Simon   •   2 comments

As researchers embedded in health systems, we should aspire to operate like river bar pilots. We have valuable local knowledge gained through years spent navigating our local waters. Researchers without that knowledge can be easily misled.

That’s Like Getting Struck by Lightning!

6 September 2017 02:43 PM   •   Greg Simon   •   0 comments

I am a converted skeptic regarding population-based suicide prevention. Until about 5 years ago, I would have argued that we lacked the two essential ingredients for effective prevention: accurate tools to identify people at risk and practical interventions to reduce that risk. I might have even said, “That’s like getting struck by lightning! How can you predict that?"

Can Health Services Defeat Epidemiology?

8 August 2017 01:52 PM   •   Greg Simon   •   0 comments

Can health services defeat epidemiology? This question is not inspired by the School of Public Health summer softball league. Instead it’s inspired by a conversation with my colleague Ed Boudreaux about screening for suicidal ideation as a tool for preventing suicide attempts and suicide deaths.

Social Determinants of Health: What's in a Name?

11 July 2017 08:56 AM   •   Greg Simon   •   11 comments

I have a beef with the name “Social Determinants of Health”. I absolutely agree with putting the word “social” right up front. It’s a fact that zip code often has a greater effect on health than genetic code. And the effects of social and environmental factors - such as trauma, loss, and deprivation - are especially relevant to mental health. It’s the specific word “determinants” that I’d want to change.