About Associate Professor Megan Passey

Megan is passionate about health equity and addressing inequities through improving health care quality and accessibility. She is especially interested in reducing disparities through prevention and improving implementation of evidence-based care.

Mixed methods health services research, incorporating both qualitative and quantitative methods. Her interest in health behaviour and chronic disease prevention is reflected in her current projects on developing a better understanding of factors contributing to preventable hospital admissions, a trial of a program to support pregnant Aboriginal women to quit smoking, improving smoking cessation support during pregnancy, and improving consumer input into delivery of health care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Associate Professor Passey is the Director of Research at the University Centre for Rural Health in Lismore. She has more than 20 years' experience undertaking policy and practice relevant research in Aboriginal health and rural health. Her PhD explored the barriers and enablers to smoking cessation among pregnant Aboriginal women, developed a quitting program and undertook a small feasibility study of the program. She is currently leading a larger trial of the program she developed. Other current implementation research addresses barriers to providing guideline-directed smoking cessation support in public antenatal clinics and developing an intervention to improve implementation; and a trial engaging Indigenous women's groups in the design and delivery of maternal and child health care. She is developing a program of work in consumer input into delivery of health care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. She currently holds a Career Development Fellowship from the NHMRC and has attracted funding of over $20 million as a chief investigator. Her research has been highly influential particularly in regard to developing smoking cessation programs for pregnant Aboriginal women, with the NSW and Commonwealth Governments both inviting her input into development and delivery of programs.

Selected publications

1. Johnston J, Longman J, Ewald D, Rolfe M, Diez Alvarez S, Gilliland A, Chung S, Das S, King J, Passey M. Validity of a tool designed to assess the preventability of potentially preventable hospitalisations for chronic conditions. Family Practice 2019

2. Passey ME & Stirling JM. Evaluation of ‘Stop Smoking in its Tracks': an intensive smoking cessation program for pregnant Aboriginal women incorporating contingency-based financial rewards. Public Health Research & Practice, 2018;28(2):e28011804.  

3. Longman JM, Adams CM, Johnston JJ & Passey ME. Improving implementation of the smoking cessation guidelines with pregnant women: what might help clinicians? Midwifery, 2018;58:137-44.

4. Longman JM, Rix E, Johnston JJ, Passey ME. Ambulatory care sensitive chronic conditions: what can we learn from patients about the role of primary health care in preventing admissions? Australian Journal of Primary Health. 2018;24(4):304-310.

5. Passey ME, Longman JM, Robinson J, Wiggers J, Jones LL. Smoke-free homes - what are the barriers, motivators and enablers? A qualitative systematic review and thematic synthesis. BMJ Open, 2016, 6:e010260.

6. Passey ME, Longman JM, Johnston JJ, Jorm L, Ewald D, Morgan GG, Rolfe M, Chalker B. Diagnosing Potentially Preventable Hospitalisations (DaPPHne): Protocol for a mixed-methods data linkage study. BMJ Open, 2015; 5:e009879

7. Passey ME, Sanson-Fisher RW, D'Este CA & Stirling JM. Tobacco, alcohol and cannabis use during pregnancy: clustering of risks. Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 2014;134:44-50. 

8. Passey ME, Bryant J, Hall AE & Sanson-Fisher RW. How will we close the gap in smoking rates for pregnant Indigenous women? Medical Journal of Australia, 2013; 199(1):39-41. .

9. Longman J, Passey M, Singer J & Morgan G. The role of social isolation in frequent and/or avoidable hospitalisation: rural community-based service providers' perspectives. Australian Health Review, 2013;37(2):223-31. 

10. Passey ME, Gale JT, Sanson-Fisher RW. "Its almost expected": rural Australian Aboriginal women's reflections on smoking initiation and maintenance: a qualitative study. BMC Women's Health, 2011; 11:55.