Joining Drexel

As of 6/1/2019, I will be joining Drexel University’s College of Computing and Informatics as Tenure-Track Assistant Professor in Human-Centered Computing.

Rejoining MSU

As of 4/15/2018, I am excited to be rejoining the Department of Media and Information at Michigan State University. I will live in San Diego, CA and travel to Michigan.

Towards Supporting Patient Decision-making In Online Diabetes Communities

Towards Supporting Patient Decision-making In Online Diabetes Communities

Authors: Jing Zhang, Rebecca Marmor, Jina Huh

Accepted at AMIA 2017, Washington DC


As of 2014, 29.1 million people in the US have diabetes. Patients with diabetes have evolving information needs around complex lifestyle and medical decisions. As their conditions progress, patients need to sporadically make decisions by understanding alternatives and comparing options. These moments along the decision-making process present a valuable opportunity to support their information needs. An increasing number of patients visit online diabetes communities to fulfill their information needs. To understand how patients attempt to fulfill the information needs around decision-making in online communities, we reviewed 801 posts from an online diabetes community and included 79 posts for in-depth content analysis. The findings revealed motivations for posters’ inquiries related to decision-making including the changes in disease state, increased self-awareness, and conflict of information received. Medication and food were the among the most popular topics discussed as part of their decision-making inquiries. Additionally, We present insights for automatically identifying those decision-making inquiries to efficiently support information needs presented in online health communities.

New seed grant received on expressive art therapy in inpatient services

We received $10,000 to develop the project, ‘Assessing efficacy of passive and active forms of expressive art therapy in inpatient services’, through the UCSD Health Sciences Academic Senate Research Grant Program.

Research questions and hypotheses
Study 1. Investigate efficacy and feasibility of passive expressive art therapy (PEAT)
Research Question. How is PEAT used at the JMC hospital?

Hypotheses: We hypothesize that patients who use the PEAT application will demonstrate reduced pain (Primary). We hypothesize that prediction models among patients will be able to identify patient cohorts that are more likely to use the PEAT application (Secondary).

Study 2. Evaluate the feasibility and efficacy of passive and active expressive art therapy
Research Question. What is the feasibility of recruitment, assessment, retention, compliance, and patient satisfaction?

Hypotheses: Expressive art therapy (both, active and passive) will improve reported pain among inpatients compared to usual care (Primary). Expressive art therapy will improve anxiety among inpatients compared to usual care (Secondary).

With Jejo Koola, MD, at Biomedical Informatics, Jina Huh will collaborate with the following people for this project: Chief Information Officer of UC San Diego Health (UCSDH) Chris Longhurst’s office, Steven Hickman’s group at the Mindfulness Institute at UCSDH, the Expressive Arts Institute of San Diego, CEO of UCSDH Thomas Savides, CMIO of Inpatient and Hopsital Affiliations at UCSDH, Paul Mills at CTRI UCSD, Rebecca Marmor, Kevin Ramotar at UCSD CAPS, and palliative care clinician Jeremy Hirst and alternative medicine researcher Erik Groessl.