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School of Public Health
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Emily C. Williams

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Professor, Health Services


PhD   University of Washington, 2009   (Health Services)
MPH   Boston University, 2003   (Health Policy, Health Law)
BA   Lewis And Clark College, 1998   (Political Science)

Contact Info


VA Puget Sound Health Care System
1660 S Columbian Way (S-152)
Seattle, WA 98108

campus box:   358280 (152)
voice:   206-277-6133
fax:   206-764-2935


Emily Williams is an addictions health services and disparities researcher and an implementation scientist. She holds a joint appointment as an Associate Professor of Health Services and Director of the Doctoral Program in Health Services at the University of Washington and a core investigator and co-director of the post-doctoral fellowship at the Denver-Seattle Center of Innovation for Veteran-Centered Value-Driven Care at VA Puget Sound Health Services Research & Development (HSR&D). She has longstanding interests in health behavior and the mechanisms (both societal- and healthcare-level) that help drive behavior change, particularly as these relate to vulnerable populations and stigmatized conditions. Her research is specifically focused on increasing access to evidence-based treatments for unhealthy alcohol and other substance use in diverse medical settings, including understanding and promoting equity in this care for vulnerable patient subpopulations (e.g., those with HIV and HCV, racial/ethnic minorities, persons living in rural areas, transgender patients, and women). She currently leads research focused on understanding patterns of alcohol use and care across transgender status, tailoring and testing practice facilitation to implement evidence-based alcohol-related care in hepatology clinics, and increasing access to evidence-based treatment for opioid use disorders in primary care.

Implementing evidence-based management of unhealthy alcohol use in medical settings; decision-making in health and health care (patient, provider, and system-level decision making); stigmatized chronic conditions (e.g., unhealthy alcohol use, HIV); social and cultural determinants of health and healthcare
  • HSERV 578
    Preparing, Writing, and Critiquing Scientific Research Proposals
  • HSERV 592
    Health Research Training Seminar

Chen JA, Glass JE, Bensley KMK, Goldberg SB, Lehavot K, Williams EC. Racial/ethnic and gender differences in receipt of brief intervention among patients with unhealthy alcohol use in the U.S. Veterans Health Administration. J Subst Abuse Treat. 2020 Dec;119:108078. doi: 10.1016/j.jsat.2020.108078. Epub 2020 Jul 15.  PMID: 32736926    PMCID: PMC7641963
PubMed Central

Satre DD, Parthasarathy S, Silverberg MJ, Horberg M, Young-Wolff KC, Williams EC, Volberding P, Campbell CI. Health care utilization and HIV clinical outcomes among newly enrolled patients following Affordable Care Act implementation in a California integrated health system: a longitudinal study. BMC Health Serv Res. 2020 Nov 11;20(1):1030. doi: 10.1186/s12913-020-05856-5.  PMID: 33176760    PMCID: PMC7656679
PubMed Central

Glass JE, Williams EC, Oh H. Racial/ethnic discrimination and alcohol use disorder severity among United States adults. Drug Alcohol Depend. 2020 Nov 1;216:108203. doi: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2020.108203. Epub 2020 Aug 10.  PMID: 32810836

Torres VN, Williams EC, Ceballos RM, Donovan DM, Duran B, Ornelas IJ. Participant engagement in a community based participatory research study to reduce alcohol use among Latino immigrant men. Health Educ Res. 2020 Oct 7. pii: cyaa039. doi: 10.1093/her/cyaa039. [Epub ahead of print]  PMID: 33025021

Mancenido A, Williams EC, Hajat A. Examining Psychological Distress Across Intersections of Immigrant Generational Status, Race, Poverty, and Gender. Community Ment Health J. 2020 Feb 19. doi: 10.1007/s10597-020-00584-w. [Epub ahead of print]  PMID: 32076903

Member, thesis committee for Fathiya Abdi
Perceived Racial/Ethnic Discrimination & Stress Among Black/African American Graduate Students On a Predominately White Campus

Member, thesis committee for Cathea Carey
Help Seeking Patterns and Perceived Barriers to Care for Latino Immigrant Men with Unhealthy Alcohol Use

Member, thesis committee for Marissa Jackson
Systems of Reproductive Health Knowledge Among African American Women with Endometrial Cancer

Member, thesis committee for Nupur Pravin Kulkarni
A Retrospective Impact Evaluation of Parental Behavior Change Around Their Child's Sleep

Chair, dissertation committee for Natalia Oster
Improving childhood vaccine coverage: Understanding factors associated with receipt of Hepatitis B and other recommended vaccines.

Chair, dissertation committee for Julie Richards
Improving Identification of Suicide risk Via Routine Screening for Depression and Alcohol Use

Member, dissertation committee for Vanessa Torres
Assessing alcohol-related consequences, participant satisfaction, and engagement strategies in the Vida PURA study of u healthy alcohol use among Latino day laborers.

Chair, dissertation committee for Lauren Lipira
Social and behavioral determinants of HIV care and outcomes among a sample of African-American women living with HIV

Chair, dissertation committee for Kara Bensley
Racial/Ethnic and Rural Differences in Alcohol Use, Care and Related Outcomes among VA Patients Living with HIV

Member, thesis committee for Madeline Frost
Factors associated with interest in drug treatment among syringe exchange clients who use opioids

Member, thesis committee for Clara Hill
Help Wanted: Social and Economic Stressors and Mental Health among Latino Day Laborers

Collaborating to Heal Addiction and Mental Health in Primary care (CHAMP)
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
PI:   Fortney           Dates:    10/1/2019 - 9/30/2024

Improving Physician Opiod Prescribing for Chronic Pain in HIV-Infected Persons
Boston Medical Center
PI:   Tsui           Dates:    9/1/2019 - 8/31/2020

Pilot Study of a Community-Pharmacy Model to Expand Access to Medications to Treat and Prevent Hepatitis C, Opioid Use Disorders, Overdose and HIV Among Persons Who Inject Drugs
National Institutes of Health (NIH)
PI:   Tsui           Dates:    7/1/2019 - 6/30/2022

Patterns of Alcohol Use and Alcohol-Related Care Among Transgender Persons
National Institutes of Health (NIH)
PI:   Williams           Dates:    4/1/2018 - 3/31/2020