Alissa L. Russ, PhD, UXC

Research Scientist, Indiana University Center for Health Services and Outcomes Research
Research Scientist, William M. Tierney Center for Health Services Research, Regenstrief Institute, Inc.
Core Investigator, VA HSR&D Center for Health Information and Communication
Adjunct Assistant Professor, Purdue University College of Pharmacy
Human Factors Engineering, UXC User Experience Certification

   Dr. Russ is a human factors engineering specialist with interests in clinical information systems and medication safety. Appointed Adjunct Assistant Professor of Pharmacy Practice at Purdue University, she is a Core Investigator for the VA HSR&D Center for Health Information and Communication, and Research Scientist in both the Indiana University Center for Health Services and Outcomes Research and the Regenstrief Institute's William M. Tierney Center for Health Services Research. Her research focus includes electronic health record, computerized provider order entry, medication alerts (e.g., drug-drug interaction alerts), and understanding how informatics can be improved to enhance patient safety. 


  Dr. Russ’  first pilot grant, “Redesigning Medication Alerts to Support Prescriber Workflow” was funded after the first submission and addressed common design problems that weaken the effectiveness of VA computerized medication alerts. She has built on that achievement by continuing to find new solutions to improve human computer interactions through improving the design and usability of the VA’s health information technology.  She has also implemented changes in the national VA electronic health record system to improve medication alerts.


  Dr. Russ serves on the Medication Safety Committee at Roudebush VAMC and on the National Scientific Steering Committee, Drug-Drug Interaction Clinical Decision Support Conference Series, for the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.  In addition, she is an Invited speaker for the National Office of Informatics and Analytics, Human Factors Engineering at the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Symposium on Human Factors and Ergonomics in Health. 

Active Projects

I. VA HSR&D Investigator Initiated Research Career Development Award 11-214  (2013-2018)

"Improving Medication Safety through Human Factors and Informatics Research" (PI)

To integrate methods from human factors and health services research to understand the cognitive processes involved in prescribing and identify strategies to enhance VA medication alerts for decision-making and patient safety.

Selected Publications                               |                          Go To PubMed List >>


1. Russ AL, Chen S, Melton BL, Saleem JJ, Weiner M, Spina JR, Daggy JK, Zillich AJ. Design and Evaluation of an Electronic Override Mechanism for Medication Alerts to Facilitate Communication Between Prescribers and Pharmacists. The Annals of Pharmacotherapy. 2015 Apr 8. pii: 1060028015581678. [Epub ahead of print]

2. Payne TH, Hines LE, Chan RC, Hartman S, Kapusnik-Uner J, Russ AL, Chaffee BW, Hartman C, Tamis V, Galbreth B, Glassman PA, Phansalkar S, van der Sijs H, Gephart SM, Mann G, Strasberg HR, Grizzle AJ, Brown M, Kuperman GJ, Steiner C, Sullins A, Ryan H, Wittie MA, Malone DC. Recommendations to Improve the Usability of Drug-Drug Interaction Clinical Decision Support AlertsJournal of the American Medical Informatics Association. 2015 Mar 30. pii: ocv011. [Epub ahead of print]

3. Russ AL, Zillich AJ, Melton BL, Russell SA, Chen S, Spina JR, Weiner M, Johnson EG, Daggy JK, McManus MS, Hawsey JM, Puleo AG, Doebbeling BN, Saleem JJ. Applying human factors principles to alert design increases efficiency and reduces prescribing errors in a scenario-based simulation. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association 2014 Oct;21(e2):e287-96.

4. Saleem JJ, Flanagan ME, Russ AL, McMullen CK, Elli L, Russell SA, Bennett KJ, Matthias MS, Rehman SU, Schwartz MD, Frankel RM. You and me and the computer makes three: variations in exam room use of the electronic health record. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association 2014 Feb;21(e1):e147-51.

5. Russ AL, Militello LG, Saleem JJ, Fairbanks RJ, Wears RL. Response to separating fact from opinion: a response to 'the science of human factors: separating fact from fiction'. BMJ Quality & Safety. 2013 Nov;22(11):964-6.

6. Russ AL, Fairbanks RJ, Karsh BT, Militello LG, Saleem JJ, Wears RL. The science of human factors: separating fact from fiction. BMJ Quality & Safety. 2013 Oct;22(10):802-8.

7. Flanagan ME, Saleem JJ, Millitello LG, Russ AL, Doebbeling BN. Paper- and computer-based workarounds to electronic health record use at three benchmark institutions.  Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association.  2013 Jun;20(e1):e59-66.

8. Russ AL, Weiner M, Russell SA, Baker DA, Fahner WJ, Saleem JJ.Design and implementation of a hospital-based usability laboratory: insights from a Department of Veterans Affairs laboratory for health information technology. Joint Commission Journal on Quality and Patient Safety. 2012 Dec;38(12):531-40.

9. Russ AL, Weiner M, Saleem JJ, Wears RL. When 'technically preventable' alerts occur, the design--not the prescriber--has failed. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association. 2012 Nov-Dec;19(6):1119; author reply 1119-20.

10. Russ AL, Zillich AJ, McManus MS, Doebbeling BN, Saleem JJ. Prescribers' interactions with medication alerts at the point of prescribing: A multi-method, in situ investigation of the human-computer interaction. International Journal of Medical Informatics. 2012 Apr;81(4):232-43.

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