Cathy D. Sherbourne

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Senior Policy Researcher
Off Site Office


Ph.D. in public health, health services research, University of California, Los Angeles

Media Resources

This researcher is available for interviews.

To arrange an interview, contact the RAND Office of Media Relations at (310) 451-6913, or email

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Cathy Donald Sherbourne is a senior policy researcher at the RAND Corporation. With a background in medical sociology, she specializes in health outcome measurement for adults and children, with a focus on mental health issues. Sherbourne has been the primary sociologist working on health status measurement, satisfaction, and the analyses of life stress, social and role functioning, social support, and mental health status for several of RAND's large-scale health policy evaluations, including the RAND Health Insurance Experiment (HIE), the Medical Outcomes Study (MOS), the AHRQ-funded Depression PORT, Health Care for Communities (HCC), and the HIV Costs and Service Utilization Study (HCSUS). She has had extensive experience in the development of self-reported health and satisfaction measures for children and adults and participated in the main analyses of general health outcomes for the HIE, MOS, PORT, HCC and numerous other studies. Sherbourne was one of the developers of the 20- and 36-item short-form health surveys (SF-20 and SF-36), used in surveying general health in clinical practice and research, health policy evaluations, and general population surveys. She served as a member of an Institute of Medicine committee to develop an agenda for health outcomes research for the elderly. Sherbourne has experience in design and implementation of quality improvement interventions for depression and anxiety disorders, including development of intervention and data collection instruments, development of new statistical methodologies, and data analysis. Sherbourne received her Ph.D. in public health, health services research from the University of California, Los Angeles.

Recent Projects

  • Depression, panic, and anxiety disorders
  • Gender differences in mental health
  • Development of asthma quality of life item bank
  • Measurement of positive mental health
  • Resilience

Selected Publications

M. Schoenbaum et al., "Gender Patterns in Cost-Effectiveness of Quality Improvement for Depression: Results of a Randomized, Controlled Trial," Journal of Affective Disorders, 87(2), 2005

K. Wells et al., "Quality Improvement for Depression in Primary Care: Do Patients with Subthreshold Depression Benefit in the Long Run?" American Journal of Psychiatry, 162(6), 2005

P. P. Roy-Byrne et al., "Randomized Effectiveness Trial of Cognitive Behavior Therapy and Medication for Primary Care Panic Disorder," Archives of General Psychiatry, 62, 2005

C. D. Sherbourne et al., "Characteristics, Treatment Patterns and Outcomes of Treatment-Resistant Depression in Primary Care," General Hospital Psychiatry, 26(2), 2004

C. Sherbourne et al., "Do the Effects of Quality Improvement for Depression Care Differ for Men and Women? Results of a Group-Level Randomized Controlled Trial," Medical Care, 42(12), 2004

Sherbourne CD, Stucky BD, Edelen MO, Eberhart NK, Kleeup E, Lara M., "The Validity of the RAND Negative Impact of Asthma on Quality of LIfe Short-Forms," Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, 134(4), 2014

Honors & Awards

  • 2014 Team Science Award for the Community Partners in Care/Witness for Wellness Council, Association for Clinical and Translational Science

Recent Media Appearances

Interviews:; Reuters; The Weekend Australian; Women's Health Weekly