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Christian D. Helfrich

faculty photo
Research Associate Professor, Health Systems and Population Health

Research Investigator
Veterans Administration Puget Sound Health Care System


PhD   University of North Carolina, 2005   (Health Services)
MPH   University of Washington, 2000   (Health Services)
BA   Gonzaga University, 1998

Contact Info


web site:

1100 Olive Way, Suite 1400
Seattle, WA 98101

campus box:   Mailstop S-152
voice:   206-277-1655
fax:   206-764-2935


Christian Helfrich has been a member of the research faculty since 2009.  He can be found on Twitter (@helfrich_c)

Dissemination and implementation research; implementation science; organizational change; change management; de-implementation of ineffective and harmful practice

Fishleder S, Harris JR, Petrescu-Prahova M, Kohn M, Helfrich CD. Development and Feasibility Testing of the Clinical-Community Linkage Self-Assessment Survey for Community Organizations. Front Public Health. 2022 May 20;10:797468. doi: 10.3389/fpubh.2022.797468. eCollection 2022.  PMID: 35669755    PMCID: PMC9163549
PubMed Central

Doll JA, Beaver K, Naranjo D, Waldo SW, Maynard C, Helfrich CD, Rao SV. Trends in Arterial Access Site Selection and Bleeding Outcomes Following Coronary Procedures, 2011-2018. Circ Cardiovasc Qual Outcomes. 2022 May;15(5):e008359. doi: 10.1161/CIRCOUTCOMES.121.008359. Epub 2022 Mar 11.  PMID: 35272504

Harris JR, Kava CM, Chan KCG, Kohn MJ, Hammerback K, Parrish AT, Helfrich CD, Hannon PA. Pathways to Employee Outcomes in a Workplace Health Promotion Program. Am J Health Promot. 2022 May;36(4):662-672. doi: 10.1177/08901171211066898. Epub 2022 Jan 4.  PMID: 34983199    PMCID: PMC9012684
PubMed Central

Duan KI, Helfrich CD, Rao SV, Neely EL, Sulc CA, Naranjo D, Wong ES. Cost analysis of a coaching intervention to increase use of transradial percutaneous coronary intervention. Implement Sci Commun. 2021 Oct 27;2(1):123. doi: 10.1186/s43058-021-00219-5.  PMID: 34706775    PMCID: PMC8554885
PubMed Central

Beaver K, Naranjo D, Doll J, Maynard C, Taylor L, Plomondon M, Waldo S, Helfrich CD, Rao SV. Design and baseline results of a coaching intervention for implementation of trans-radial access in percutaneous coronary intervention. Contemp Clin Trials. 2021 Dec;111:106606. doi: 10.1016/j.cct.2021.106606. Epub 2021 Oct 25.  PMID: 34710590

ORCID ID: 0000000298274768

Google Scholar: 2Vg4gDkAAAAJ

Scopus ID: 13407517300

Chair, dissertation committee for Diana Naranjo
Diffusion of Procedure Innovation Among Cardiac Catheterization Operators at the Veterans Health Administration

The TRIAD (Treatment Individualized Appendicitis Decision-making)
Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI)
PI:   Flum           Dates:    10/1/2022 - 9/30/2025

Evaluating Service Delivery and Support Mechanisms to Improve the Quality of Life for Service Members and Veterans with Spinal Cord Injuries
US Department of Defense (DOD)
PI:   Wood           Dates:    10/1/2019 - 9/30/2021

Improving Safety and Quality through Evidence-Based De-Implementation of Ineffective Diagnostics and Therapeutics

Dr. Helfrich serves as Co-PI of a five-year QUERI program studying de-implementation strategies of harmful and ineffective clinical practices across multiple settings. The program incorporates extensive data on organizational context and stakeholder needs, and includes close partnerships with both national clinical leaders and local clinical champions.

The Organizational Readiness to Change Assessment (ORCA)

The ORCA is a structured self-report survey tool to assess the collective readiness of a clinical team or unit to implement a specific evidence-based clinical practice change, such as introducing hepatitis C screening and treatment in substance-use disorder clinics, or use of an evidence-based dosing algorithm for titrating warfarin in anti-coagulation clinics. Dr. Helfrich led a multi-site psychometric study of the ORCA and currently serves as co-investigator on three multi-site implementation trials that are using the ORCA, or have adapted the ORCA as part of implementation support activities.

Evaluations of Veterans Health Administration Transformational Initiatives

Dr. Helfrich has helped evaluate four VA initiatives to improve specialty care access and care coordination through the use of alternative consultation modalities, such as electronic specialty consults (via the electronic health record), and to expand the capabilities of primary care providers to manage specialty conditions.

Evaluating Implementation of the VA Patient-Aligned Care Team (PACT) initiative

In 2010, the VA began national implementation of a patient-centered medical home model emphasizing team-based care, alternative modalities for communicating with patients, such as secure messaging, and population-based, proactive health care. Dr. Helfrich was part of the national PACT evaluation, chairing a working group of researchers and consultants to design and field a national primary care employee survey, with particular attention to assessing team-based care, barriers to effective team functioning and employee burnout. Many presentations of the findings from this work are available as video seminars: