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Members of the network

The PCC NET is a growing body of both health care researchers and stakeholders from different organizations and institutions who are interested in promoting both research on and implementation of patient-centered care. Members are from around the world. They all join under the umbrella of PCC NET in order to advance patient-centered care.

Lena Ansmann

I am a passionate health services researcher with a specific interest in the way healthcare organizations shape patient-centered care.
After studying public health, I was working as a research assistant at the Institute of Medical Sociology, Health Services Research and Rehabilitation Science (IMVR) of the University of Cologne, Germany. This is where I received my PhD in 2014 for a thesis on the organizational context of social support from physicians in breast cancer care from. In 2015 I became Assistant Professor at the same University and focused on implementation and evaluation of complex interventions in healthcare organizations. In 2017 I was appointed Professor for Organizational Health Services Research at the University of Oldenburg, where I am currently working.

Mina Bakhit

Dr Bakhit is a medical doctor and Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Institute for Evidence-Based Healthcare (IEBH), Bond University, Australia.

Mina Bakhit’s doctoral work focused on improving communication between primary care clinicians and patients with acute self-limiting infections, highlighting the potential benefits of increased consultations in which shared decision making (SDM) occurs.

In his post-doctoral fellowship at IEBH, Mina’s research broadened to encompass various SDM research areas. Including SDM implementation in a state health department, training health professionals in SDM skills, helping doctors and patients make evidence-informed collaborative decisions for different conditions and exploring new ways of communicating prognostic information to patients and caregivers.


  • Bachelor’s Degree in Medicine and Surgery, Cairo University, Cairo (Egypt)- 2008
  • Master of Arts in Physical Activity and Health, Friedrich Alexander University, Erlangen (Germany)- 2014
  • Doctor of Philosophy (Public Health), Bond University (Australia)- 2019
Katja Cöllen

Katja Cöllen is a psychologist and researcher at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf. Currently, she is working in the KOMPAT- project. Within the KOMPAT-project, Katja and her colleagues develop and evaluate a communication skills training for nurses in Germany.
Marie-Luise Dierks

Prof. Dr. Marie-Luise Dierks is an educational scientist and Professor of Public Health at the Hannover Medical School (MHH) since 2004. She is co-initiator and head of the Patient University at the MHH and head of the research unit “Patient orientation and Health Education”. Her research topics include: Empowerment and health literacy, patient satisfaction, quality of patient information and advice, empowerment, strengthening of self-management skills and digital competence in people with chronic diseases, effects of patient participation in support groups.

Angelina Dois

Angelina Dois is Associate Professor at the School of Nursing, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. Her expertise is in family and mental health nursing. She is a nurse midwife, family therapist and master in psychology from the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. Angelina is a research associate with Paulina Bravo’s PhD team for patient-centred care and shared decision-making and leads the Good Treatment in health care line. Her line of research seeks to advance towards humanised and participatory health systems at all levels.

Marie-Anne Durand

Marie-Anne Durand is a Health Psychologist with a Doctoral Degree in Medicine and a longstanding interest in evidence-based public health and applied health services research. Over the past 15 years, she has developed research and evaluation expertise in communication in healthcare, health disparities research, clinical trials, and implementation science. She is a Inserm Public Health Researcher (CRCN) in France (INSERM, University Toulouse III Paul Sabatier). She is also Adjunct Associate Professor at the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice, USA, Adjunct Scientist at Unisanté, a Primary Care Academic Center in Lausanne, Switzerland and a Consultant for EBSCO Health, USA. Her primary research interests lie in intervention research on healthcare communication (including shared decision making), with a focus on socially disadvantaged populations, health disparities, health literacy, and implementation science.

Alana Fisher

Dr Fisher is a researcher based at two Australian digital mental health services leading the development, evaluation and delivery of digital treatments for mental health and physical health conditions.

Her program of work focuses on consumer decision-making about uptake and engagement with mental health treatments. She uses qualitative, quantitative, and mixed-design research methods to explore key stakeholder perspectives, priorities and needs. These insights then guide the development of targeted information and decision-support resources, and person-centred service delivery.

More broadly, Dr Fisher’s research interests are in enhancing our understanding and delivery of evidence-based best practice in mental healthcare in line with individual preferences, needs, and priorities.

Juan Franco

Juan Franco is a family physician and researcher with expertise in evidence-informed healthcare, knowledge translation and patient-centred care. He works as the Editor-in-Chief of BMJ Evidence Based Medicine, clinical editor at the BMJ, and Managing Editor of the Cochrane Metabolic and Endocrine Disorders Group at the Institute of General Practice of the Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf.

Wiebke Frerichs

Wiebke Frerichs is a health scientists M.Sc. and a Ph.D. candidate in the field of psycho-oncology at the Department of Medical Psychology at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf.

Currently she is a senior researcher for a study on patient-centered communication in nursing, a mixed-method study including a pilot randomized controlled trial (RCT) evaluating a communication skills training for nurses in Germany.

Within her Ph.D. she is investigating the communication of healthcare professionals (HCPs) in oncology when a parent has cancer. Together with her colleagues she developed and evaluated a needs-based training for HCPs to enhance their competencies when a parent has cancer as a pilot RCT.

Her field of expertise is the person-centered communication of healthcare professionals, shared-decision making and physical activity for non-communicable diseases, as she also holds a B.Sc. in Physical Therapy (NL, CAN).

Pola Hahlweg

Pola Hahlweg is a research group leader in medical psychology, board-certified psychotherapist, psycho-oncologist, and clinical ethics consultant at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (Germany). Her work focuses on person-centered healthcare, medical decision-making in cancer care, and medical assistance in dying. She received her doctorate in psychology from the University of Hamburg (Germany), her master’s degree in psychotherapy from the University of Bern (Switzerland), and her combined undergraduate and graduate training in psychology at the University of Bamberg (Germany) and the University of British Columbia (Canada).

Clara Haufschild

Clara Haufschild is a psychologist M.Sc. and a research associate within the ASPIRED-project at the Department of Medical Psychology at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf. Currently, she is working on the routine implementation of a questionnaire that measures patient-centeredness through the lens of the patients themselves.

Natalie Joseph-Williams

I am a Reader in Improving Patient Care at Cardiff University School of Medicine and Associate Director for the newly established Health and Care Research Wales Evidence Centre.

I have over sixteen years experience of researching, teaching, developing internation standards and implementing shared decision making, working closely with clinical teams, patients, and academics across the UK to embed this approach into routine clinical care.

Christina Lindemann

Christina Lindemann is the coordinator of the Hamburg Network for Health Services Research (HAM-NET) and the Center for Health Care Research and Public Health (CHCR & PH) at the UKE. Within these two positions her main goal is to strengthen health care research at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE) and in the metropolitan region of Hamburg.

Christina has a postgraduate Master of Science in Epidemology and Master of Public Health. Furthermore she is a trained nurse. 

Anja Lindig

I am post-doctoral health services researcher with a special interest in implementation science, shared decision-making, organizational processes and health care for women.

After studying Psychology, Neuroscience (Dipl.) and Cognitive Psychology (M.Sc.), I worked as a Neuropsychologist and Psycho-oncologist. Several experiences during those years of practical work in the health care system, I realized that there is a high need for improving person-centered care in in Germany. Thus, I decided to start my PhD on shared decision-making implementation in oncological care at the Department of Medical Psychology at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE) in 2017 and finished it successfully in 2022.

In my recent project CarePreg, I am studying person-centeredness in healthcare and social support services for women with an unintended pregnancy in Germany.

Alejandra Martínez, Ph.D. (c)

Alejandra Martínez holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile (PUC). She is a research coordinator for the Patient-centered care group at the School of Nursing at the PUC. She is part of the bi-national research project “Promoting Patient Participation in Care: Transferring knowledge on patient-centered research, education, and clinical practice.”

Kendra Mielke

Kendra Mielke is a health scientist M.A. and a PH.D at the Department of Medical Psychology (University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf). Currently, she is working as a research assistant within the KOMPAT-project, a mixed-method study on patient-centered communication in nursing care.

María José Vergara Montoya

Greetings everyone!

I am a RN from La Serena, Chile pursuing my master’s degree in nursing at Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. I started my career 10 years ago as a community mental health nurse. Nowadays, I am the nurse in charge of PLWH program in Hospital San Pablo de Coquimbo.

I’ve always been an advocate for improving health promotion and disease prevention for a better quality of life. PCC perspective has provided me with an understanding that to pursuit a healthier population, heath care services and healthcare provider’s perspective must be open to acknowledge user’s values and preferences.

Now I’m developing my thesis work analyzing PCC elements in PLWH programs in Chilean healthcare public system.

Mariela Murillo

I am a Professional with more than 20 years of experience in public and private health institutions. I  have coordinated and led multidisciplinary work teams in health, with participatory methodology. Experience in health care, teaching and management
experience in adult and pediatric, elderly, palliative
care, mental health and psychiatry, with a systemic approach patient- and family-centred Experience and training in sales as well as customer care and service.

Adriana Poppe

Adriana Poppe is a sociologist and research associate with the PMV research group at the university hospital cologne. She is working in different research projects evaluating innovative forms of care in e.g. patients with polypharmacy. Within the evaluation process, her focus is on secondary data analysis (claims data) as well as the implementation of a socio-economic impact assessment (SEIA) which takes, among other, subjective experience of patients into account.

More broadly, her research interests are in delivery of evidence-based health care. Moreover, she is interested in integrated people-centered health services.

Paula Riganti

Paula Riganti is a family physician and MSc in Medical Education. She is an adjunct professor in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of British Columbia and at the University of the Hospital Italiano of Buenos Aires. She’s passionate about patient involvement in healthcare, education and research. Her research interests include continuing professional development, knowledge translation, interprofessional education and shared decision making.
Andrea Rioseco Castillo

Andrea Rioseco is family physician and Assistant Professor in the Department of Family Medicine at the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile (UC). She teaches undergraduate, graduate, and continuing education courses on person-centered care and works at a Family Health Center (CESFAM) in Santiago, Chile. Currently, she is a co-investigator in a project to strengthen training in Patient-Centered Care in undergraduate courses at the School of Medicine UC.

Cintia Tanure

Cintia Tanure is an M.Sc. health scientist and a Ph.D. student at the University of Brasilia and a member of the Brazilian Institute of Patient Rights (Instituto Brasileiro de Direito do Paciente – IBDPAC).

Within her M.Sc. she validated a scale that analyzes the conflict in the patient’s healthcare decision-making.

She is currently a researcher in a study on patient-centered communication in nursing and shared decision-making as a change in perspective for health care in Brazil.

Her area of expertise is rehabilitating adults with spinal cord injury, shared decision-making and conflicted decision-making in healthcare.

Angelique Timmerman

Dr Angelique Timmerman is a psychotherapist and an assistant professor at the department of Family Medicine at Maastricht University.
Her current research is in clinical workplace learning and assessment, focusing on doctor-patient communication and SDM. She is experienced
in qualitative research methodologies and educational design based research. In the GP training programme, she is project leader in a national project for faculty development of coaching self-directed
learning and works as a curriculum developer and trainer in communication skills.

Cheyenne Topf

Cheyenne Topf is a psychologist from Hamburg, currently working as a research assistant in the research group of Prof. Dr. Isabelle Scholl at the Department of Medical Psychology at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf. Her current project is a feasibility study on patient-centered cancer care through the provision of audio recordings of clinical encounters for patients.

Rieka von der Warth

Rieka von der Warth is a psychologists M.Sc. and Ph.D. candidate at the Section of Health Care Research and Rehabilitation Research at the Medical Center, University of Freiburg.

Her Ph.D. focuses on health communication preferences in transgender and non-binary people based on the theory of patient-centeredness. Aim of the thesis is to develop a communication guide for physicians to apply and communicate in a non-transphobic way.

Furthermore, she is as a researcher in different research projects evaluating complex health care interventions enhancing care, in e.g. geriatric patients or individuals with substance-related disorders.

More broadly, Rieka von der Warth´s field of expertise, is patient-centered care in vulnerable groups, methods in health services research and patient-reported outcomes.

Birgit Vogt

I’m a Health Care Administrator and Consultant of Care Development and Nursing Science  at the head office of Patient- and Care Management at the UKE for over 9 years. At the beginning of my professional career as a Registered Nurse (RN), I chose the management path and worked for over 20 years in various hierarchical levels.  Then I took the scientific path and now use scientific knowledge and tools to solve management problems.

The majority of my research is quantitative in nature.

Stefan Zeh

Stefan Zeh is a psychologist and research associate within the ASPIRED-project at the Department of Medical Psychology (University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf) and he currently is finishing his PhD. In the ASPIRED-project and within his PhD, Stefan wants to assess (experienced) patient-centeredness through the lense of patients. He is dedicated to foster patient-centered care through his research, clinical work and in lectures for students of medicine. Furthermore, he is in training to become a licensed psychotherapist.

Elâ Ziegler

Elâ Ziegler, M.Phil. is a sociologist based in Hamburg working as a health care researcher and lecturer at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf in the Institute of Medical Sociology.

Graduating in development studies in Cape Town fostered her interest in quantitative and qualitative analyses as well as participatory research.

She is currently pursuing her PhD on the topic of peer support in oncological diseases. As part of a research group on patient orientation and peer support she is involved in two research projects aiming to improve patient-centered care: gesa-K and the evaluation of the medical practice AnDOCken.

Jördis Zill

Jördis Zill combines  scientific and clinical work as head of the research group „Patient-Centered Care: Evaluation and Implementation“ and as a psychotherapist (CBT) at the outpatient clinic for psychooncology at the Department of Medical Psychology of the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf. She studied psychology, sexual sciences and personnel development at the University of Hamburg (Germany), the University of Münster (Germany) and the Deakin University (Australia).  Within her scientific work she focuses on measurement and implementation of person-centered care with a special interest in women’s health studies. She currently leads a project on needs of women with unintended pregnancy within healthcare and support services in Germany (CarePreg).

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