Debora Goetz Goldberg, PhD, MHA, MBA


Dr. Goldberg is an Associate Professor at George Mason University in the Department of Health Administration and Policy. She is a mixed methods researcher with an emphasis on survey and qualitative research methodologies. Her research focuses on primary care practice transformation, patient experience, and care for the underserved. Her teaching experience includes courses on the US health care system, change management and leadership, evaluation and outcomes research methodology, and qualitative research methods. Before entering academia she worked in healthcare management consulting serving commercial and government clients such as Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Department of Veteran Affairs, and the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services. She is also proud to be a returned Peace Corps volunteer (’95-’97) who worked with the Ministry of Health in Guyana as a National Health Planner. 

University Service

  • Member, GMU IRB Committee, 2021 - ongoing
  • Chair, GMU HAP Student Matters Committee, 2020 - ongoing
  • Member, GMU MHA and PhD in Health Policy Committees, 2015 - ongoing

Community Service

  • Peer Reviewer – Journals: Annals of Internal Medicine, Health Services Research Journal, Health Affairs, Annals of Family Medicine, Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine, Qualitative Health Research, Women's Health Issues, The American Journal of Managed Care, Journal of Health Organization and Management, BMJ Open, BMC Family Practice 
  • Program Committee Member, North American Primary Care Research Group, 2019-2023
  • Department of Veterans Affairs HSR1 Scientific Merit Review Board Member, 2019-current


Research Interests

  • Primary Care
  • Women’s Health
  • Organizational Research
  • Patient Experience
  • Qualitative Research
  • Survey Research
  • Patient-Centered Medical Home

Selected Publications

Whitmyre, E., Esposito-Smythers, C., Goldberg, D.G., Scalzo, G.,  Defayette, A., Lopez, R. (2022, in print). Impact of a Virtual Suicide Safety Planning Training on Clinician Knowledge, Self-Efficacy, and Use of Safety Plans in Community Mental Health Clinics. Archives of Suicide Research. 

Whitmyre, E., Esposito-Smythers, C., Goldberg, D.G., Scalzo, G.,  Defayette, A., Lopez, R. (2022). Implementation of an Electronic Safety Plan within a Measurement Feedback System. Evidence-Based Practice in Child and Adolescent Mental Health. DOI: 10.1080/23794925.2022.2081946.

Betancourt, C,. Kitsantas, Y., Goldberg, D.G., Hawkes, B. (2021). Substance Use Relapse Among Veterans at Termination of Treatment for Substance Use Disorders. Military Medicine. DOI: 10.1093/milmed/usab280.

Grady, V., Soylu, T., Goldberg, D.G.,Kitsantas, P., Grady, J. (2021). A Cross-Sectional Analysis of Primary Care Practice Characteristics and Healthcare Professionals’ Behavioral Responses to Change. INQUIRY The Journal of Health Care Organization and Finance. 58:1-7 DOI: 10.1177/0046958021996518.

Soylu, T., Cuellar, A.E., Goldberg, D.G., Kuzel, A. (2021). Engagement of Small to Medium-Sized Primary Care Practices in Quality Improvement Efforts. Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine. 34(1):40-48. DOI: 10.3122/jabfm.2021.01.200153.

Goldberg, D.G., Soylu, T., Kitsantas, P., Grady, V., Nichols, L. (2021). Burnout among Primary Care Providers and Staff: Evaluating the Association with Practice Adaptive Reserve and Individual Behaviors. Journal of General Internal Medicine.

Goldberg D.G., Mohan A. (2020). Bridging the Safety Net: A Case Study of How the MAP Clinics Use Collaboration to Meet the Needs of Vulnerable Patients. In: Nugus P., Rodriguez C., Denis JL., Chênevert D. (eds) Transitions and Boundaries in the Coordination and Reform of Health Services. Organizational Behaviour in Healthcare. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham, Switzerland.ISBN 978-3-030-26683-7.

Soylu, T., Goldberg, D.G., Cuellar, A.E., Kuzel, A. (2020). Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act: A Qualitative Study in Nineteen Small to Medium-Sized Primary Care Practices in Virginia. Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine. 33, 6.  

Soylu, T., Cuellar, A.E., Goldberg, D.G., Kuzel, A. (2020). Readiness and Implementation of Quality Improvement Strategies Among Small and Medium-Sized Primary Care Practices: An Observational Study. Journal of General Internal Medicine. 35, 2882–2888. DOI:

Goldberg, D.G., Soylu, T., Grady, V., Kitsantas, P., Grady, J., Nichols, L. (2020). Indicators of Workplace Burnout among Providers and Staff in Small to Medium- Sized Primary Care Practices. Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine, 33, 3, 378-385. DOI:

Goldberg, D.G., Gimm, G., Burla, S., Nichols, L. (2020). Experience of Care of Patients with Multiple Chronic Conditions in a Payer-Based Patient Centered Medical Home Model. Population Health Management, 23,4. DOI:

Goldberg, D.G., Haghighat, S., Kavalloor, S., Nichols, L. (2019). A Qualitative Analysis of Implementing EvidenceNOW to Improve Cardiovascular Care. Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine, 32(5):705-714. DOI: 10.3122/jabfm.2019.05.190084.

Gimm, G., Goldberg, D.G., Ghanem, N., Haghighat, S., Want, J., Hough, D. and Nichols, L. (2019). Provider Experiences with a Payer-Based PCMH Program. Journal of General Internal Medicine, 34, 2047–2053 DOI: 10.1007/s11606-019-05005-7.

Goldberg, D.G., Goldberg, M.H., Shah, R., Meagher, J. and Ailani, H.(2018). Pseudophakic mini-monovision: high patient satisfaction, reduced spectacle dependence, and low cost. BMC Ophthalmology, 18:293, 1-6. DOI: 10.1186/s12886-018-0963-3.

Talib, Z., Jewers, M., Strasser, J., Popiel, D., Goldberg, D.G., Chen, C., Kepley, H., Mullan, F.  Regenstein, M. (2017). Primary Care Residents in Teaching Health Centers: Intentions to Practice in Underserved Settings after Residency Training. Academic Medicine, 93, 1, 98-103.DOI: 10.1097/ACM.0000000000001889.

Goldberg, D.G., Sahgal, B., Beeson, T., Wood, S.F., Mead, H., Abdul-Wakil, A., Stevens, H., Rui, P., and Rosenbaum, S. (2017). Patient perspectives on quality family planning services in underserved areas. Patient Experience Journal, 4, 1, 7.DOI: 10.35680/2372-0247.1194.

Grantham, S., Goldberg, D.G., and Infeld, D.L. (2017). Dual Eligibles' Experience of Care with North Carolina's Patient-Centered Medical Home. Population Health Management, 20, 4, 287-293. DOI: 10.1089/pop.2016.0060.

Mead, K., Brantly, E., Zur, J., Goldberg, D.G. (2016). Collaboration across the Safety Net in the Era of Health Reform: Opportunities or Obstacles? Medical Care Research and Review, 1-25. DOI:  10.1177/1077558716638989.

Goldberg, D.G., Feng, L. and Kuzel A. J., (2016). The Role of Primary Care Practices in Advancing Population Health. Journal of Ambulatory Care Management, 39, 1, 87-94. DOI: 10.1097/JAC.0000000000000078.

Goldberg, D.G., Wood, S., Johnson, K., Mead, H., Beeson, T., Lewis, J., and Rosenbaum, S. (2015). The Organization and Delivery of Family Planning Services in Community Health Centers. Women’s Health Issues, 25, 3, 202-208. DOI:10.1016/j.whi.2015.02.00.

Goldberg, D.G. and Kuzel, A.J. (2014). Progress and implementation of team-based care in the United States. BMC Health Services Research, 14, Suppl 2, p. 46. DOI: 10.1186/1472-6963-14-S2-P46.

Goldberg D. G., Beeson T., Kuzel A. J., Love L. E., Carver M. C. (2013). Team-based care: A critical element of primary care practice transformation. Population Health Management, 16, 3, 150-6. DOI: 10.1089/pop.2012.0059.

Goldberg, D. G., Mick, S. S., Kuzel, A. J., Feng, L. B. and Love, L. E. (2013). Why Do Some Primary Care Practices Engage in Practice Improvement Efforts Whereas Others Do Not? Health Services Research, 48, 2pt1, 398–416. DOI:10.1111/1475-6773.12000.

Goldberg, D.G., Kuzel, A, Feng, L., DeShazo, J., and Love, L.E. (2012). Electronic Health Records in Primary Care Practices: Benefits, Challenges, and Successful Strategies. American Journal of Managed Care, 18, 2, e48-e54.

Goldberg, D.G. (2012). Primary care in the United States: Practice-based innovations and factors that influence adoption, Journal of Health Organization and Management, 26, 1, 81-97. DOI: 10.1108/14777261211211106.

Goldberg, D.G., Clement, D. and Cotter, J. (2011). Development and Assessment of an Interdisciplinary PhD Program Offered through a Blended Learning Environment, Journal of Allied Health, 40, 3, 137-142.

Dugan, D., Scholle, S., Mick, S.S, Steidle, E., Goldberg, D.G. (2011). The Relationship between Organizational Culture and Practice Systems in Primary Care, Journal of Ambulatory Care Management, 34, 1, 47–56. DOI: 10.1097/JAC.0b013e3181ff6ef2.

Goldberg, D.G. and Mick, S.S. (2010). Medical home infrastructure: Effect of the environment and practice characteristics on adoption in Virginia, Medical Care Research and Review, 4, 431-49. DOI: 10.1177/1077558710367795.

Goldberg D.G. and Kuzel A.J. (2009). Elements of the patient-centered medical home in family practices in Virginia, Annals of Family Medicine, 7, 4, 301-308. DOI: 10.1370/afm.1021.


Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), Health and Public Safety Workforce Resiliency Training Program, Goldberg, D.G. (principal investigator) $2,049,289. 1 U3NHP45404‐01‐00), January 2022 to December 2025.

Department of Health and Human Services, SBIR, Federated Automated Survey Tool (FAST). Barron Associates (Principal Investigator), Goldberg, D.G. (consultant), September 2021 to September 2022. 

George Mason University, College of Health and Human Services. Clinical Decision Tool to Improve Antidepressant Prescriptions. Goldberg, D.G. (principal investigator), December 2020 to June 2022, $15,209. 

Northern Virginia Health Foundation. Linking Social Factors to Health in Arlington County (LINK). Collaboration with Arlington Free Clinic, Virginia Hospital Center, Arlington County Department of Human Services to collect and analyze information on social determinants of health using surveys and community meetings. Nichols, L. (PI), Goldberg, D.G. (lead investigator, qualitative research), $32,085, January 2019 to December 2019.  

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), subcontract with Virginia Commonwealth University. EvidenceNOW: Advancing Heart Health in Primary Care, Heart of Virginia Healthcare.

Qualitative and survey research on the implementation and dissemination of evidenced-based treatments for heart health and primary care practice transformation. Goldberg, D.G. (principal investigator, AHRQ add-on task), $123,000 R18HS023913, May 2018 to 2019.  

AHRQ, subcontract with Virginia Commonwealth University. EvidenceNOW: Advancing Heart Health in Primary Care, Heart of Virginia Healthcare. Research on implementation and dissemination of the ABCS of Heart Health, primary care practice transformation, and work satisfaction. Goldberg, D.G. (principal investigator, AHRQ add-on task), $414,755 R18HS023913, May 2017 to May 2018.  

CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield. Evaluation of Patient Centered Medical Home Model. Mixed methods research using surveys and focus groups to evaluate the CareFirst Patient Centered Medical Home Model. Nichols, L. (PI), Gimm, G., Cuellar, A., Goldberg, D.G. (lead investigator on patient experience survey), $5,400,000 January 2016 – 2018.  

George Mason University, Summer Research Funding. Identifying Factors of Successful Cross-Sector Collaborations to Improve Population Health. Qualitative interviews with health system leaders to identify successful multi-sector collaborations addressing population health. Goldberg, D.G. (principal investigator) $5,000 Summer 2016.  

AHRQ. An In-Depth Examination of Performance Driven Primary Care Practices. Case studies on primary care practice quality improvement efforts and practice transformation using surveys, qualitative interviews and on-site visits with observation. Goldberg, D.G. (principal investigator), Kuzel, A. Mick, S. Pickler, R. $235,061 R01HS018422 September 2009 to September 2011. Percent coverage: 40% continuous 


  • Affiliate Faculty, GMU Center for Evidence-Based Behavioral Health (CEBBH) 
  • Member, North American Primary Care Research Group
  • Member, American Public Health Association
  • Member, AcademyHealth


  • PhD, Health Related Services with Concentration in Healthcare Organizations, Virginia Commonwealth University
  • MHA, Health Administration, Xavier University
  • MBA, Xavier University