Deborah M. Scharf

Photo of Deborah Scharf
Behavioral and Social Scientist; Professor, Pardee RAND Graduate School
Pittsburgh Office


B.A. in honors psychology, McGill University; M.Sc. in clinical and health psychology, University of Pittsburgh; Ph.D. in clinical and health psychology, University of Pittsburgh; Internship in clinical psychology, University of Pittsburgh


Deborah M. Scharf is a clinical (licensed) and health psychologist and behavioral and social scientist at the RAND Corporation. She is also a professor at the Pardee RAND Graduate School. Her work addresses issues related to tobacco use, treatment, and policy; innovations in electronic real-time data capture; behavioral and primary health care delivery systems; and evaluation of, and technical assistance for, civilian and military behavioral health programs. Scharf holds an adjunct appointment in the Department of Psychiatry of the University of Pittsburgh, where she earned her Ph.D. in clinical psychology.

Concurrent Non-RAND Positions

Associate Professor of Psychiatry, Adjunct, University of Pittsburgh

Recent Projects

  • Evaluation of the SAMHSA Primary and Behavioral Health Care Integration Grant Program
  • An Examination of New York State's Community Behavioral Health Center-Based Integrated Primary and Behavioral Healthcare Services for Adults with Serious Mental Illness
  • Innovative Practices for Supporting Psychological Health and TBI in the Military
  • Evaluation of the Arkansas Tobacco Settlement
  • Adolescent sexual communications with peers: a multimodal, in vivo assessment

Selected Publications

Scharf, D., Eberhart, N., Schmidt, N., Vaughan, C., Dutta, T., Pincus, H., Burnam, A., "Integrating primary care into community behavioral health settings: programs and early implementation experiences," Psychiatric Services, 64:660-665, 2013

Scharf, D. Martino, S., Setodji, C., & Shadel, W., "Middle and high school students' exposure to alcohol- and smoking-related media: A pilot study using ecological momentary assessment," Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 27(4):1201-1206, 2013

Engberg, J. Scharf, D. Lovejoy, S., Yu, H. & Tharp-Taylor, S., Evaluation of the Arkansas Tobacco Settlement Program: Progress through 2011, RAND (TR-1261), 2012

Martino, S., Scharf, D., Setoji, C., Shadel, W., "Measuring exposure to pro-tobacco marketing and media: A field study using ecological momentary assessment.," Nicotine and Tobacco Research, 14:398-406, 2012

Shadel, W.G., & Scharf, D. "Interactions and the addictions.," in H.J. Shaffer, D.A. LaPlante, & S.E. Nelson (Eds.)., The Addiction Syndrome Handbook, American Psychological Association., 2012

Scharf, D., Fabian, T., Fitcher-DeSando, C., & Douaihy, A., "Nicotine replacement prescribing trends in a large psychiatric hospital, before and after implementation of a hospital-wide smoking ban.," Nicotine and Tobacco Research, 13:466-473, 2011

Connor, S., Scharf, D., Jonkman, L., & Hebert, M., "Focusing on the 5 A's: A Comparison of Homeless and Housed Patients' Access to and Use of Pharmacist-Provided Smoking Cessation Treatment.," Research in Social and Administrative Pharmacy

Honors & Awards

  • Bob Brook Scholarship for Promising Investigators in Health, RAND Corporation


  • A pack of cigarettes with a warning label in Montreal, Canada, June 28, 2007

    Graphic Warning Labels on Cigarettes Are Scary, but Do They Work?

    'Graphic warning labels' pair gruesome images with warnings about the dangers of smoking, covering anywhere from 30 to 80 percent of cigarette pack 'faces' (the front and back). Do they prevent people from starting to smoke or cause current smokers to quit?

    Sep 30, 2014 The Health Care Blog

  • doctor comforting a depressed male patient

    Improving Physical Health Care for Adults with Serious Mental Illness

    A promising strategy for helping adults with serious mental illness gain access to appropriate primary and preventive medical services is to integrate those services into a setting in which the population already receives care.

    Apr 14, 2014 The RAND Blog