Services Research Branch (SRB)

What We Do:

The Services Research Branch (SRB) supports rigorous research to improve population health by maximizing the efficient delivery of high-quality, personalized addiction treatment and related services.  SRB seeks advance science to inform the design and implementation of stigma-free patient-centered systems of care so that people who experience addiction can recover and sustain their recovery over the long-term.

Research Interests:

SRB has developed a portfolio of research that includes a range of methods and approaches, including, but not limited to: implementation science, comparative effectiveness trials, integrated treatment approaches, quality improvement efforts, treatment adaptations, cost-effectiveness studies, insurance coverage and policy research, mHealth interventions, cross-system data integrations, modeling studies, and building learning systems of care.

Across this diverse set of methodological approaches, SRB seeks to advance science that supports providing high-quality personalized addiction treatment services to people to support their sustained recovery from addiction. SRB supports research at multiple levels (individual, clinician, organization, community, and systems) to achieve this goal.

Examples of specific topics of interest include:

  • Developing and testing strategies aimed at optimizing the sustainability and scalability of evidence-based practices, including leveraging technology to enhance implementation
  • Enhancing the use of data to build learning systems of care and drive improvements in care delivery and patient outcomes
  • Identifying diverse strategies to improve treatment engagement and retention, with specific attention to reducing disparities for vulnerable and under-represented populations
  • Developing and testing approaches to supporting long-term sustainable recovery
  • Improving transitions across systems of care (e.g., from justice settings to community settings, from emergency care to specialty care)
  • Studies to understand and address workforce dynamics (e.g., recruitment, retention, turnover) that influence the quality of service delivery
  • Across all topics of interest, applicants are strongly encouraged to incorporate the following priorities (“SPECS”) into their study designs:
    • Sustainability
    • Patient/stakeholder engagement
    • Equity
    • Connecting research to practice
    • Scalability

Portfolio Areas and Contacts

Our team is eager to help prospective applications. Prospective applicants are encouraged to consult with a program officer early in the process of developing an application to determine alignment with the priorities of SRB and DESPR. The table below highlights program officers responsible for areas of research covered by our branch. If you are uncertain about who to reach out to, contact the branch chief, Tisha Wiley, for additional guidance.

Focal SubstancePrimary Contact PO
CannabisShelley Su
StimulantsMarcy Fitz-Randolph
TobaccoMarcy Fitz-Randolph
Polysubstance UseMarcy Fitz-Randolph
Opioids
     OUD Services Delivered in Novel Contexts (e.g., pharmacies, libraries)Julia Zur
     OUD Services Delivered in Healthcare SystemsSarah Duffy
     OUD Treatment Outreach, Engagement, & InitiationJulia Zur
     OUD Retention, Continuing Care, and Related Service EnhancementsSarah Duffy
     All Other Opioid-Focused ResearchAll—see other focal areas below
ComorbiditiesPrimary Contact PO
Infectious Disease Comorbidities (HIV)Angela Lee-Winn
Infectious Disease Comorbidities (HCV)Tamara Haegerich
Physical Comorbidities (other than HIV & Hep C) Marcy Fitz-Randolph
Mental Health Comorbidities Sean Lynch
Violence, Trauma, & PTSD Carrie Mulford
Chronic Pain Shelley Su
Intervention ApproachesPrimary Contact PO
Behavioral &/Or Combined InterventionsMarcy Fitz-Randolph
mHealth,Marcy Fitz-Randolph
TelehealthSean Lynch
Harm Reduction (Including Overdose Prevention & Post-Overdose Intervention)Julia Zur
StigmaJulia Zur
Recovery ResearchSarah Duffy
Personalized Addiction Health ServicesShelley Su
Community & Structural InterventionsTamara Haegerich
MethodsPrimary Contact PO
Big Data/Data ScienceTamara Haegerich
Implementation Science Theory/MethodsLori Ducharme
Organization/Systems of Care FocusPrimary Contact PO
Integrated Care Models (HIV)Angela Lee-Winn
Novel Care Delivery Models (e.g., hub & spoke, collaborative care)Sarah Duffy
Health Economics, Insurance & FinancingSarah Duffy
QualitySarah Duffy
PolicyJulia Zur
Workforce IssuesSean Lynch
Cross-System Collaborations (other than Justice)Tamara Haegerich
Special Populations or SettingsPrimary Contact PO
AdolescentsSean Lynch
Homelessness & HousingCarrie Mulford
Justice Populations (including Justice/HIV)Carrie Mulford
Racial & Ethnic DisparitiesKeisher Highsmith
Sexual & Gender MinoritiesKeisher Highsmith
International SettingsAngela Lee-Winn
Women (general & including pregnancy & parenting)Keisher Highsmith
Child WelfareKeisher Highsmith
Pain PatientsShelley Su
VeteransTamara Haegerich
Older Adults & AgingMarcy Fitz-Randolph
Social Connection/LonelinessCarrie Mulford
Training/Infrastructure/OtherPrimary Contact PO
T32’s, R25’s, R13’sLori Ducharme
Implementation Science K’sLori Ducharme
All other K’sAssigned by topic area
P30-P50 (Center Grants)Tamara Haegerich 

Staff

Tisha Wiley, Ph.D. – Branch Chief, SRB; Associate Director for Justice Systems

Carrie F. Mulford, Ph.D. – Deputy Branch Chief, SRB; Health Scientist Administrator

Full List of Staff Biographies

Tisha Wiley, Ph.D. – Branch Chief; Associate Director for Justice Systems
(301) 594-4381

Tisha Wiley, Ph.D. joined the Services Research Branch in 2012. She became the Services Research Branch Chief in 2018. Prior to assuming leadership of the branch, Dr. Wiley oversaw a broad portfolio in the Services Research Branch that emphasized substance use treatment in criminal justice and juvenile justice settings, implementation science, technology, methodology, small business grants, and measurement development.  Dr. Wiley was also named NIDA’s Associate Director for Justice Systems in 2018. In this role, Dr. Wiley provides leadership across NIDA on justice-related issues. This includes leading NIDA’s Justice Community Opioid Innovation Network (JCOIN). Dr. Wiley previously served as NIDA’s science officer on earlier justice initiatives, including Juvenile Justice Translational Interventions for Adolescents in the Legal System (JJ-TRIALS) and Criminal Justice Drug Abuse Treatment Studies (CJ-DATS) cooperative research programs. During her time at NIDA and NIH, Dr. Wiley has developed and led dozens of initiatives across a wide range of topics, including implementation science, social media, methodology and measurement, etc.  Prior to joining NIDA, Tisha was a Society for Research in Child Development Fellow and American Association for the Advancement of Science Policy (SRCD/AAAS) Fellow at the Office of Behavioral and Social Science Research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), where she worked several methodological initiatives, including leading the offices’ efforts around data visualization and visual analytics.

Before coming to the NIH, Tisha was the Assistant Director of Research at the Juvenile Protective Association, a non-profit social service agency in Chicago focusing on child welfare. She has served as a consultant for the Chicago Children's Advocacy Center and the Illinois Department of Child and Family Services. Dr. Wiley received her Ph.D. in Social Psychology from the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC).

Carrie F. Mulford, Ph.D. – Deputy Branch Chief, SRB
(301) 827-6473

Dr. Carrie Mulford is the Deputy Branch Chief and a Project Official in the Services Research Branch. She came to NIDA in 2018 after serving as a social science analyst at the National Institute of Justice for 14 years. She received her Ph.D. in psychology from the University of Virginia in 2004 and her B.A. from Rice University in 1992. Dr. Mulford currently covers NIDA’s services research on treatment of substance use among adolescents, young adults, and individuals involved in the justice system. She is part of the NIDA team overseeing the Justice Community Opioid Innovation Network (JCOIN). Dr. Mulford is also interested in the co-occurrence of trauma and substance use. Dr. Mulford also serves on several intra-NIH and interagency work groups, including the Federal Interagency Workgroup on Youth Programs, the HHS Reentry/Criminal Justice Workgroup, and the intra-NIH Violence Research Workgroup. 

Lori J. Ducharme, Ph.D. – Health Scientist Administrator
(301) 827-6331

Dr. Ducharme has been a program official at NIH since 2008, overseeing a portfolio of research grants that apply implementation science to increase the adoption and sustained use of evidence-based treatments; she also works with early career training mechanisms including F31/R36 awards and T32s.  In addition, she serves as the NIDA Project Scientist for the HEAL-funded Justice Community Opioid Innovation Network (JCOIN).  While on staff at NIAAA, she led the development of the Institute’s Alcohol Treatment Navigator®, an online resource offering a strategy to help individuals find evidence-based alcohol treatment services.  Prior to joining NIH, she worked in both academic and contract research settings, studying the evolution of the U.S. addiction treatment system in response to changes in financing, regulation, and the introduction of novel medications and behavioral therapies. Dr. Ducharme received her Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Georgia.

Sarah Q. Duffy, Ph.D. –  Associate Director for Economics Research, DESPR
(301) 451-4998

Dr. Sarah Duffy is principally responsible for NIDA's economics, insurance and financing, opioid use disorder treatment services research, and treatment quality measurement and management portfolios. Prior to joining NIDA, she was a senior research economist at the Office of Applied Studies (now Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality) at the Substance Use and Mental Health Services Administration  where she used data from large national data collection projects, including the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) and Treatment Episode Data Set (TEDS), to conduct economic and health services research on substance use disorder  treatment and costs. Dr. Duffy has also worked for the Maryland Health Services Cost Review Commission and the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality where she published several articles in the substance use disorder treatment, health services research, and economics literatures. She received her Ph.D. in economics from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

Marcy Fitz-Randolph, DO MPH – Medical Officer
(301) 443-9800

Dr. Marcy Fitz-Randolph joined the Services Research Branch in 2020 as a program officer with a focus on mobile and telehealth interventions, polysubstance issues, physical and mental health co-morbidities and SUD, and tobacco cessation. She also coordinates data and safety monitoring of clinical trials. Dr. Fitz-Randolph came to NIDA from PatientsLikeMe, a digital health network leveraging real-world patient-generated health data for research. At PatientsLikeMe, she grew and managed research support operations including ethics and IRB review. Her research portfolio there focused on work with academic partners and grant-funded opportunities in patient-centered research primarily using qualitative and mixed-methods approaches. She served as the institutional partner for The PATIENTS Program with the University of Maryland and co-authored a book chapter on patient and stakeholder engagement in clinical trials. Prior to her move into research, Dr. Fitz-Randolph practiced medicine in rural Iowa, focusing on noninvasive pain management and occupational injury. She received her medical degree from UNT Health Science Center in Fort Worth, TX and completed residencies in Internal Medicine and Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine before attending the University of Iowa to complete her MPH in 2004.

Tamara Haegerich, Ph.D. – Social and Behavioral Scientist Administrator

Dr. Tamara Haegerich joined the Services Research Branch at NIDA in 2022 as a Program Official with a focus on using data to identify and test strategies to better use data to improve addiction services. She also oversees veteran-focused addiction health services research. Dr. Haegerich previously served as the Deputy and Acting Director of the Hines Cooperative Studies Program (CSP) Coordinating Center in the US Department of Veterans Affairs, providing leadership, planning, and guidance on large, multi-site Phase II and Phase III clinical trials in the Veteran population, including a trial on medical cannabis. Dr. Haegerich also served an Associate Director for Science at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention providing scientific direction to research addressing the opioid overdose epidemic and cannabis and public health. She has authored peer-reviewed publications, book chapters, and government reports, including manuscripts on the opioid overdose epidemic, etiology of injury, the effectiveness of prevention strategies, clinical guidelines, and on scientific careers in public service. She has contributed to the development of training modules for clinicians and public health professionals on clinical practice guidelines and the prevention of injury and violence. She is a recipient of the HHS Hubert H. Humphrey Award for Service to America for the CDC Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain. Dr. Haegerich received her Ph.D. in Social Psychology at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Keisher Highsmith, DrPH – Health Scientist Administrator
(301) 402-1984

Dr. Keisher Highsmith is a Scientist/Epidemiologist in the U.S. Public Health Service and has been a public health practitioner for approximately 20 years.  Dr. Highsmith serves as a Program Official in the Services Research Branch of the NIDA Division of Epidemiology, Services and Prevention Research.  In this role, she provides administrative oversight of the HEALing Communities Study which is part of the Helping to End Addiction Long-term (HEAL) Trans-NIH initiative and the Rural Opioid Initiative.  She oversees a portfolio that focus on implementation science, policy, access/utilization of services to address SUD and the impact on maternal, women and child health.  Dr. Highsmith Co-Chairs the NIDA Women & Sex/Gender Differences Research Group and serves on the NIDA Research Training Committee.  Prior to coming to NIH, Dr. Highsmith was a Deputy Director in the HRSA Bureau of Primary Health Care where she directed special initiatives and technical assistance investments that supported HRSA funded health centers with clinical quality practice transformation and service expansion activities such as mental health and substance abuse. Dr. Highsmith also served as the Director of Special Initiatives and Program Planning and Evaluation in the Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB). She provided scientific leadership and support for the development and implementation of innovative, multidisciplinary programs in maternal, child and women’s health.  Dr. Highsmith established The Maternal Health Initiative (MHI) which is a comprehensive national strategy to improve women’s health and ensure the quality and safety of care. She also conceptualized, launched, and led The Alliance for Innovation on Maternal Health: Improving Maternal Health and Safety which is a national initiative to reduce maternal morbidity and mortality through quality improvement of patient safety in birthing facilities. Dr. Highsmith served as a subject matter expert on maternal/women’s health on HRSA State MCH Title V Block Grant Transformation Steering Committee and Chaired the State Needs Assessment Workgroup. Dr. Highsmith earned her Doctorate in Public Health from Morgan State University. 

Shelley Su, Ph.D. – Health Scientist Administrator
(301) 402-3869

Dr. Shelley Su is a program officer in the Services Research Branch at NIDA. Her portfolio spans chronic pain, treatment services for cannabis use disorders, and translational efforts bridging neuroscience and services research. Dr. Su administers a large portfolio on the complex interactions between chronic pain and opioid use disorder/physical dependence, and is currently leading a HEAL-funded initiative on Integrative Management of chronic Pain and OUD/misuse (IMPOWR). Dr. Su’s portfolio supports the entire spectrum of the career development pipeline, ranging in pre/post-doc fellowships, career development/mentoring (K) awards, independent investigator research programs, and center grants.

Prior to joining SRB, Dr. Su served as a program officer in the Division of Neuroscience and Behavior at NIDA in 2014 where she administered a portfolio of grants on marijuana abuse and dependence, the role of negative affective processes in drug abuse, cognitive flexibility, and sex differences in addiction.

Dr. Su has prior training and experience in animal behavioral paradigms used to investigate the complex behavioral and neurobiological features of Substance Use Disorders (SUDs). She received her Bachelor’s degree from the University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill, where she studied memory reconsolidation, context-induced drug seeking and relapse in animal models of drug abuse. She then completed her Ph.D. at the University of California, Santa Barbara where she conducted research on the neurobiology of positive and aversive effects induced by drugs of abuse, the influence of extended access or escalation on cocaine-associated opponent process actions, and sex differences.  During her post-doctoral training, she investigated the role of cognitive flexibility and its associated neurobiological correlates in SUDs.

Julia Zur, Ph.D. – Health Scientist Administrator
(301) 443-2261

Dr. Julia Zur joined the Services Research Branch in 2019. Her portfolio includes research on opioid use disorder treatment, opioid overdose, policies relevant to substance use disorder treatment, and stigma directed at individuals with substance use disorder. She also works on the Justice Community Opioid Innovation Network (JCOIN), primarily overseeing JCOIN’s Coordination and Translation Center. Prior to working at NIDA, she worked at the Kaiser Family Foundation, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, and the Treatment Research Institute, all of which shaped her interest in substance use disorder treatment and the factors that impact to treatment access and recovery. Dr. Zur completed a post-doctoral fellowship at The George Washington University Milken Institute of Public Health, and received a PhD in Mental Health from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and a BS in Neuroscience and Psychology from Muhlenberg College.

Sean Lynch, Ph.D., LCSW – Social and Behavioral Health Scientist Administrator
(301) 594-4596

Dr. Lynch is a program officer administering a portfolio of research grants in topic areas such as the behavioral health workforce, telehealth, and rural settings.  He has more than 15 years of experience in behavioral health services research and the evaluation of physical and behavioral health programs.  He comes to NIDA from the Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) Center for Behavioral Health Statistics & Quality, where he worked on evaluation oversight activities related to mental health and substance use programs.  At SAMHSA, he conducted behavioral health services research and his work has focused on quality of care measures, access to care, trends in service utilization and costs, and the behavioral health workforce.  His research interest area is primary care behavioral health integration.  He has published more than 30 articles in peer-reviewed social work, medical, and public health journals and delivered over 40 presentations at behavioral health services research conferences.  Before coming to the federal government, he was a faculty member in the psychiatry department at the University of Florida-Jacksonville and he completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Pharmaceutical Health Services Research at the University of Maryland, Baltimore, School of Pharmacy.  Dr. Lynch is a licensed certified social worker (LCSW) and he received his master’s and doctoral degrees in social welfare from UCLA.

Angela Lee-Winn, Ph.D. – Social Behavioral Scientist Administrator
(301) 451-7206

Dr. Angela Lee-Winn joined the Division of Epidemiology, Services, and Prevention Research in July 2022. Dr. Lee-Winn’s work spans both the Prevention Research Branch and Services Research Branch. In the Prevention Research Branch, her work focus on HIV prevention among people who use drugs, with a special emphasis on women & girls. In the Services Research Branch, her responsibilities include international grants, particularly those focused on HIV research and HIV training grants. She is a prevention scientist and psychiatric epidemiologist by training. Her program areas focus on equitable HIV and substance use prevention and care research with underserved populations, including women and girls who face intersectional stigma and discrimination. Dr. Lee-Winn has interests in dissemination and implementation (D&I) science, including multi-level, systematic adaptation, implementation, and evaluation of sustainable, evidence-based strategies across HIV and substance use cascade of care. Prior to joining NIDA, Dr. Lee-Winn worked as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Epidemiology at Colorado School of Public Health, where she conducted community-engaged, transdisciplinary research on substance use prevention and care with perinatal and underserved populations and enhancing harm reduction efforts in preventing substance use and related infectious diseases. Dr. Lee-Winn completed her postdoctoral training at the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute for Child Health and Human Development and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, where she focused on understanding psychosocial and sociocultural factors that contribute to the etiology of mental disorders and substance use and developing and evaluating gender- and culturally-relevant interventions. Dr. Lee-Winn earned her PhD in Public Mental Health from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and MA in Clinical Psychology from Columbia University. She graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Washington, Seattle with BA in Psychology and Communication.