Member Spotlight

Q&A with Dr. Julia Price

Julia Price, PhD

Pediatric Psychologist and Research Scientist

Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children

Q: Tell me about yourself and your background.

A: I’m a pediatric psychologist by training. I received my PhD in clinical psychology from Temple University. I completed my internship and fellowship at Nemours Children’s Health in Wilmington, Delaware where I’ve been for close to 10 years now. My initial role on staff at Nemours was a joint clinical-research position. Throughout my career, I have conducted clinical work and research primarily with two populations, pediatric type one diabetes and pediatric injury. I slowly shifted more and more of my time towards research in an effort to support larger scale change in access to and delivery of evidence-based psychosocial care. In my clinical role, I enjoyed to seeing how the work that we do as pediatric psychologists can support families in recovering after injury or continuing to adjust to a diagnosis of type 1 diabetes. I also had growing awareness that not many families have access to or receive these evidence-based pediatric psychology services. This issue inspired much of the research I am currently conducting.

Q: What is the most compelling information that you’ve found in your research to date?

A: I recently conducted a national survey study of pediatric diabetes clinics across the US where we asked one medical provider and one psychosocial provider from each clinic to complete the survey. We focused on understanding the current psychosocial staffing levels among these clinics and on the implementation of guidelines for psychological care for families with a child with type one that have been published for years now by the International Society of Pediatric and Adolescent Diabetes. We found a staggering understaffing of psychosocial providers within these clinics, including at larger children’s hospitals. On average, one psychologist has about 2 hours per week to care for one hundred patients. This understaffing significantly contributes to limited access to screening and intervention services for families with a child with type 1 diabetes. There’s a lot of work to do to improve this infrastructure and to advance the reach of care we know helps families.

Q: Tell us about what you wish your research could solve right now and or a burning question that your research could answer in the future.

A: We have known for a long time now about disparities in access to care among kids with type one diabetes and their families as well as disparities in pediatric type 1 diabetes outcomes. I hope that my work and the work of many others can help us better understand how to extinguish those disparities in access and in outcomes. This work should start with a community engaged approach to research and valuing the voices of families whom our research has left out and who our care has not served well so far.

Q: What type of service would be most helpful for your developing career?

A: I believe mentorship is key, particularly in areas where I have less experience, such as community engaged and health disparities research. Mentorship and opportunities for collaboration around implementation science methodology has also been central to my developing career.

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