Associate Professor Meredith Harris

Principal Research Fellow

School of Public Health
Faculty of Medicine
meredith.harris@uq.edu.au
+61 7 3271 8675

Overview

Associate Professor Meredith Harris is a researcher in the field of mental health services research and evaluation. She is a Principal Research Fellow with the School of Public Health at the University of Queensland, based at the Queensland Centre for Mental Health Research.

Meredith holds qualifications in psychology, policy and applied social research, and public health. She has over 25 years of experience in the management and administration of research projects, including systematic literature reviews, cross-sectional and longitudinal studies, studies based on epidemiological survey data, and evaluations of health programs and interventions using observational, quasi-experimental and experimental research designs.

Meredith's current role is with the Analysis and Reporting Component of the Australian Mental Health Outcomes and Classification Network (AMHOCN), which leads the design, analysis and reporting of the National Outcomes and Casemix Collection (http://www.amhocn.org/). In this role, she is leading a range of projects designed to improve the measurement of patient- and service-level outcomes in Australia's specialised public sector mental health services.

Research Interests

  • Investigating clinical and psychosocial outcomes of mental health treatment services and models
  • Evaluating primary mental health care reforms
  • Understanding population patterns of health service utilisation for mental health problems
  • Using epidemiological and policy analyses to inform mental health service planning decisions

Research Impacts

Meredith has led several major research projects that have directly informed mental health policy and service planning. For example, she undertook two empirical mental health planning studies that developed service planning targets for public sector mental health services and community support services funded by the Queensland government. The recommendations from these studies were taken up directly in the subsequent Queensland Mental Health Plan 2007-17 and informed the Queensland Department of Communities’ Supporting Recovery: Mental Health Community Services Plan 2011-2017.

She has led or contributed to a number of projects related to initiatives implemented under the National Mental Health Strategy. For example, she was an investigator on several components of a government-funded evaluation of the Better Access initiative; particularly, she led Component B which involved an in-depth analysis of patterns of use of mental health services delivered subsidised via the Medicare Benefits Schedule. The evaluation contributed evidence that has been widely used in ongoing national debate about access, equity and outcomes associated with this major national mental health reform, and informed refinements to the program guidelines.

Meredith’s research has involved novel applications of epidemiological survey data to answer policy-relevant questions about the performance of Australia’s mental health system. Using these data, for example, she published the first study to quantify minimally adequate treatment for affective and anxiety disorders in the Australian mental health system, the first published independent evaluation of a major primary mental health care initiative (the Better Access program), and the first study to examine the match between practice guideline recommendations and treatment of subthreshold depression in Australian primary care settings. Collectively, these studies have contributed to ongoing debates and efforts to understand the impact of policy and service impacts of measures of disease burden related to mental disorders.

Qualifications

  • Doctor of Philosophy, The University of Queensland
  • Master of Policy and Applied Social Research, Macquarie University
  • Master of Public Health, The University of Sydney
  • Bachelor of Arts (Hons), Macquarie University

Publications

  • Harris, Meredith G., Kazdin, Alan E., Munthali, Richard J., Vigo, Daniel V., Hwang, Irving, Sampson, Nancy A., Al-Hamzawi, Ali, Alonso, Jordi, Andrade, Laura Helena, Borges, Guilherme, Bunting, Brendan, Florescu, Silvia, Gureje, Oye, Karam, Elie G., Lee, Sing, Navarro-Mateu, Fernando, Nishi, Daisuke, Rapsey, Charlene, Scott, Kate M., Stagnaro, Juan Carlos, Viana, Maria Carmen, Wojtyniak, Bogdan, Xavier, Miguel and Kessler, Ronald C. (2022). Perceived helpfulness of service sectors used for mental and substance use disorders: Findings from the WHO World Mental Health Surveys. International Journal of Mental Health Systems, 16 (1) 6, 6. doi: 10.1186/s13033-022-00516-z

  • Kessler, Ronald C., Kazdin, Alan E., Aguilar-Gaxiola, Sergio, Al-Hamzawi, Ali, Alonso, Jordi, Altwaijri, Yasmin A., Andrade, Laura H., Benjet, Corina, Bharat, Chrianna, Borges, Guilherme, Bruffaerts, Ronny, Bunting, Brendan, de Almeida, José Miguel Caldas, Cardoso, Graça, Chiu, Wai Tat, Cía, Alfredo, Ciutan, Marius, Degenhardt, Louisa, de Girolamo, Giovanni, de Jonge, Peter, de Vries, Ymkje Anna, Florescu, Silvia, Gureje, Oye, Haro, Josep Maria, Harris, Meredith G., Hu, Chiyi, Karam, Aimee N., Karam, Elie G., Karam, Georges ... WHO World Mental Health Survey collaborators (2022). Patterns and correlates of patient-reported helpfulness of treatment for common mental and substance use disorders in the WHO World Mental Health Surveys. World Psychiatry, 21 (2), 272-286. doi: 10.1002/wps.20971

  • Bruffaerts, Ronny, Harris, Meredith G, Kazdin, Alan E, Vigo, Daniel V, Sampson, Nancy A, Chiu, Wai Tat, Al-Hamzawi, Ali, Alonso, Jordi, Altwaijri, Yasmin A, Andrade, Laura, Benjet, Corina, de Girolamo, Giovanni, Florescu, Silvia, Haro, Josep Maria, Hu, Chi-Yi, Karam, Aimee, Karam, Elie G, Kovess-Masfety, Viviane, Lee, Sing, McGrath, John J, Navarro-Mateu, Fernando, Nishi, Daisuke, O'Neill, Siobhan, Posada-Villa, José, Scott, Kate M, Have, Margreet Ten, Torres, Yolanda, Wojtyniak, Bogdan, Xavier, Miguel ... WHO World Mental Health Survey Collaborators (2022). Perceived helpfulness of treatment for social anxiety disorder: findings from the WHO World Mental Health Surveys. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology. doi: 10.1007/s00127-022-02249-3

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Grants

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Supervision

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Publications

Book

Book Chapter

  • McDermott, F., Happell, B., Meadows, G., Fossey, E., Sundram, S., Shawyer, F., Favilla, A., McNab, C., Inder, B., Wadsworth, Y., Grey, F., Pinches, A., Bassilios, B., Harris, M., Burgess, P., Pirkis, J. and Klaic, K. (2020). Advancing knowledge in mental health care. Mental health and collaborative community practice. An Australian perspective. (pp. 1.4-+) edited by Graham Meadows, John Farhall, Ellie Fossey, Brenda Happell, Fiona McDermott, Sebastian Rosenberg, Vrinda Edan, Merinda Epstein, Hamilton Kennedy and Cath Roper. Oxford, United Kingdom: Oxford University Press.

  • Henry, Lisa P., McGorry, Patrick D., Harris, Meredith and Amminger, Paul (2009). Clinical characteristics of first-episode schizophrenia. Schizophrenia: Biopsychosocial Approaches and Current Challenges. (pp. 39-51) edited by Siegfried Kasper and George N. Papadimitriou. London , UK: Taylor & Francis.

  • Harris, Meredith, Zipursky, Robert E., Addington, Donald, Nordentoft, Merete and Power, Paddy (2009). Using research and evaluation to inform the development of early-psychosis service models: International examples. The recognition and management of early psychosis. (pp. 385-404) edited by Henry J. Jackson and Patrick D. McGorry. Cambridge, United Kingdom: Cambridge University Press. doi: 10.1017/CBO9780511576287.022

  • Harris, Meredith, Edwards, Jane, Ratnaike, Deepika, Wong, Lisa, Wade, Darryl and Brewer, Warrick (2004). Evaluating treatment integrity in first episode early psychosis: Comparing what is promised with what is delivered. Best care in early psychosis intervention: Global perspectives. (pp. 169-174) edited by Tom Ehmann, G. William MacEwan and William G. Honer. London, U.K.: Taylor & Francis.

  • Edwards, J., Harris, M. and Herman, A. (2002). The Early Psychosis Prevention and Intervention Centre. Recent Advances in Early Intervention and Prevention in Psychotic Disorders. (pp. xx-xx) edited by C. Ogura. Tokyo, Japan: Seiwa Shoten Publishers.

Journal Article

Conference Publication

Other Outputs

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

Completed Supervision