Dr Carissa Bonner

Research Fellow
School of Public Health

Member of the Charles Perkins Centre

Telephone +61 2 9351 7125

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Biographical details

Dr Carissa Bonner is a behavioural scientist working in public health, with a focus on medical decision making and risk communication. Her PhD at The University of Sydney investigated how GPs and patients make decisions about cardiovascular disease risk, to identify ways to improve the prevention of heart attack and stroke. This led to her current role within a NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence, where she is developing new systems to communicate research evidence and shared decision making resources to GPs and their patients. She has spent the last 10 years investigating psychological aspects of health through research roles in academia and consultancy, and has expertise in the development and evaluation of communication interventions used in clinical practice around the world.


 

Research interests

Doctors and patients can too easily fall into decision-making traps that result in some people missing out on useful medications, while other people end up taking medications that they don't need. As a behavioural scientist, my research aims to find the best ways to communicate information about health risks, so that doctors and patients can make informed decisions. My specific interests include risk perception, doctor-patient communication and medical decision making, and you can find me discussing these issues on twitter (@carissa_bon).

Teaching and supervision

I supervise student research projects in psychology, public health and IT (e-health), and teach on the topics of health literacy, risk communication, shared decision making, patient decision aids, qualitative research methods and writing/publishing research in medical journals.

Current research students

Project title Research student
Development and evaluation of a mobile phone app for diabetes management designed for people with low health literacy Julie AYRE

In the media

Articles published in The Conversation:

Bonner C, Doust J. Worried about taking statins? Here's what you need to know. The Conversation, November 8th, 2013.
URL: https://theconversation.com/worried-about-taking-statins-heres-what-you-need-to-know-19877

Jansen J, McLachlan A, Bonner C, Naganathan V. Medicines to treat side effects of other medicines? Sometimes less is more beneficial. The Conversation, August 9th, 2016.
URL: https://theconversation.com/medicines-to-treat-side-effects-of-other-medicines-sometimes-less-is-more-beneficial-62981

Selected grants

2019

  • Development and randomised trial evaluation of an online consumer engagement tool for CVD risk assessment and management: A decision aid tailored to health literacy level; Bonner C, McCaffery K, Trevena L, Doust J; National Heart Foundation of Australia/Vanguard Grant.

2018

  • OCEAn - NETs (Occasions of Care Explained and Analysed - Nominated Extra Topics); Trevena L, Harrison C, Gordon J, Bonner C, Poon S, Gorji N; Royal Australian College of General Practitioners/RACGP Foundation / HCF Research Foundation Research Grant.

2017

  • Translating cardiovascular disease prevention guidelines into general practice: a behavioural intervention within a systems approach to improve evidence-based practice; Bonner C; National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC)/Early Career Fellowships.
  • Combining new guideline formats with patient communication tools to improve evidence-based practice; Bonner C, Doust J, McCaffery K, Trevena L; National Heart Foundation of Australia/Vanguard Grant.

2016

  • Combining new guideline formats with patient communication tools to facilitate evidence-based risk assessment and management in cardiovascular disease prevention; Bonner C, Doust J, Trevena L, McCaffery K; Royal Australian College of General Practitioners/Therapeutic Guidelines Limited Research Grant.

2014

  • A randomised trial to investigate whether heart age can improve CVD prevention; McCaffery K, Bonner C, Doust J, Teixeira-Pinto A; National Heart Foundation of Australia/Vanguard Grant.

2012

  • Analysis of lifestyle risk factor management for the Heart Foundation; Bonner C, McCaffery K, Jansen J, Dhillon H, McKinn S, Irwig L; National Heart Foundation of Australia/Research Support.

Selected publications

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Journals

  • Obermair, H., Dodd, R., Bonner, C., Jansen, J., McCaffery, K. (2018). 'It has saved thousands of lives, so why change it?' Content analysis of objections to cervical screening programme changes in Australia. BMJ Open, 8(2), 1-8. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., Fajardo, M., Hui, S., Stubbs, R., Trevena, L. (2018). Clinical validity, understandability, and actionability of online cardiovascular disease risk calculators: Systematic review. JMIR Research Protocols, 20(2), 1-11. [More Information]
  • Traeger, A., Reed, B., O'Connor, D., Hoffmann, T., De Carvalho Machado, G., Bonner, C., Maher, C., Buchbinder, R. (2018). Clinician, patient and general public beliefs about diagnostic imaging for low back pain: protocol for a qualitative evidence synthesis. BMJ Open, 8(2), e019470. [More Information]
  • Weir, K., Nickel, B., Naganathan, V., Bonner, C., McCaffery, K., Carter, S., McLachlan, A., Jansen, J. (2018). Decision-Making Preferences and Deprescribing: Perspectives of Older Adults and Companions About Their Medicines. Journal of Gerontology Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences, 73(7), e98-e107. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., McKinn, S., Lau, A., Jansen, J., Doust, J., Trevena, L., McCaffery, K. (2018). Heuristics and biases in cardiovascular disease prevention: How can we improve communication about risk, benefits and harms? Patient Education and Counseling, 101(5), 843-853. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., Spinks, C., Semsarian, C., Barratt, A., Ingles, J., McCaffery, K. (2018). Psychosocial Impact of a Positive Gene Result for Asymptomatic Relatives at Risk of Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy. Journal of Genetic Counseling, 27(5), 1040-1048. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., Bell, K., Jansen, J., Glasziou, P., Irwig, L., Doust, J., McCaffery, K. (2018). Should heart age calculators be used alongside absolute cardiovascular disease risk assessment? BMC Cardiovascular Disorders, 18(1), 1-8. [More Information]
  • Jansen, J., McKinn, S., Bonner, C., Irwig, L., Doust, J., Glasziou, P., Bell, K., Naganathan, V., McCaffery, K. (2017). General practitioners' decision making about primary prevention of cardiovascular disease in older adults: A qualitative study. PloS One, 12(1), 1-13. [More Information]
  • Trevena, L., Shepherd, H., Bonner, C., Jansen, J., Cust, A., Leask, J., Shadbolt, N., Del Mar, C., McCaffery, K., Hoffmann, T. (2017). Shared decision making in Australia in 2017 [Partizipative Entscheidungsfindung in Australien im Jahr 2017]. German Journal for Evidence and Quality in Health Care (Zeitschrift fur Evidenz, Fortbildung und Qualitaet im Gesundheitswesen), 123-124, 17-20. [More Information]
  • McKinn, S., Bonner, C., Jansen, J., Teixeira-Pinto, A., So, M., Irwig, L., Doust, J., Glasziou, P., McCaffery, K. (2016). Factors influencing general practitioners' decisions about cardiovascular disease risk reassessment: Findings from experimental and interview studies. BMC Family Practice, 17(1), 1-9. [More Information]
  • Jansen, J., Naganathan, V., Carter, S., McLachlan, A., Nickel, B., Irwig, L., Bonner, C., Doust, J., Colvin, J., Heaney, A., McCaffery, K., et al (2016). Too much medicine in older people? Deprescribing through shared decision making. BMJ, 353, 1-6. [More Information]
  • Juraskova, I., Butow, P., Fisher, A., Bonner, C., Anderson, C., Bu, S., Scarlet, J., Stockler, M., Wetzig, N., Ung, O., et al (2015). Development and piloting of a decision aid for women considering participation in the Sentinel Node Biopsy versus Axillary Clearance 2 breast cancer trial. Clinical Trials, 12(4), 409-417. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., Jansen, J., McKinn, S., Irwig, L., Doust, J., Glasziou, P., McCaffery, K. (2015). How Do General Practitioners and Patients Make Decisions About Cardiovascular Disease Risk? Health Psychology, 34(3), 253-261. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., Jansen, J., Newell, B., Irwig, L., Teixeira-Pinto, A., Glasziou, P., Doust, J., McKinn, S., McCaffery, K. (2015). Is the "Heart Age" Concept Helpful or Harmful Compared to Absolute Cardiovascular Disease Risk? An Experimental Study. Medical Decision Making, 35(8), 967-978. [More Information]
  • McKinn, S., Bonner, C., Jansen, J., McCaffery, K. (2015). Recruiting general practitioners as participants for qualitative and experimental primary care studies in Australia. Australian Journal of Primary Health, 21(3), 354-359. [More Information]
  • Jansen, J., McKinn, S., Bonner, C., Irwig, L., Doust, J., Glasziou, P., Nickel, B., van Munster, B., McCaffery, K. (2015). Systematic review of clinical practice guidelines recommendations about primary cardiovascular disease prevention for older adults. BMC Family Practice, 16(1), 1-13. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., Jansen, J., McKinn, S., Irwig, L., Doust, J., Glasziou, P., McCaffery, K. (2014). Communicating cardiovascular disease risk: an interview study of General Practitioners' use of absolute risk within tailored communication strategies. BMC Family Practice, 15(1), 1-8. [More Information]
  • Jansen, J., Bonner, C., McKinn, S., Irwig, L., Glasziou, P., Doust, J., Teixeira-Pinto, A., Hayden, A., Turner, R., McCaffery, K. (2014). General practitioners' use of absolute risk versus individual risk factors in cardiovascular disease prevention: an experimental study. BMJ Open, 4(5), 1-7. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., Jansen, J., Newell, B., Irwig, L., Glasziou, P., Doust, J., Dhillon, H., McCaffery, K. (2014). I Don't Believe It, But I'd Better Do Something About It: Patient Experiences of Online Heart Age Risk Calculators. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 16(5), 1-17. [More Information]
  • Juraskova, I., Butow, P., Bonner, C., Bell, M., Smith, A., Seccombe, M., Boyle, F., Reaby, L., Cuzick, J., Forbes, J. (2014). Improving decision making about clinical trial participation - a randomised controlled trial of a decision aid for women considering participation in the IBIS-II breast cancer prevention trial. British Journal of Cancer, 111(1), 1-17. [More Information]
  • Juraskova, I., Bonner, C. (2013). Decision aids for breast cancer chemoprevention. Breast Cancer Research, 15(5), 1-2. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., Jansen, J., McKinn, S., Irwig, L., Doust, J., Glasziou, P., Hayen, A., McCaffery, K. (2013). General practitioners' use of different cardiovascular risk assessment strategies: a qualitative study. Medical Journal of Australia, 199(7), 485-489. [More Information]
  • Juraskova, I., Butow, P., Bonner, C., Robertson, R., Sharpe, L. (2013). Sexual adjustment following early stage cervical and endometrial cancer: prospective controlled multi-centre study. Psycho-Oncology, 22(1), 153-159. [More Information]
  • Lim, S., Vos, E., Flaxman, A., Danaei, G., Shibuya, K., Adair-Rohani, H., Amann, M., Anderson, H., Andrews, K., Aryee, M., Blyth, F., Bonner, C., Chen, J., Darling, S., Driscoll, T., Jacklyn, G., Leigh, J., March, L., Orchard, J., Passmore, E., Sanchez Riera, L., Smith, E., Wilson, N., et al (2012). A comparative risk assessment of burden of disease and injury attributable to 67 risk factors and risk factor clusters in 21 regions, 1990-2010: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2010. The Lancet, 380(9859), 2224-2260. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., Nattress, K., Anderson, C., Carter, J., Milross, C., Philp, S., Juraskova, I. (2012). Chore or priority? Barriers and facilitators affecting dilator use after pelvic radiotherapy for gynaecological cancer. Supportive Care in Cancer, 20(10), 2305-2313. [More Information]
  • Fisher, A., Bonner, C., Biankin, A., Juraskova, I. (2012). Factors influencing intention to undergo whole genome screening in future healthcare: A single-blind parallel-group randomised trial. Preventive Medicine, 55, 514-520. [More Information]
  • Juraskova, I., Bonner, C., Bell, M., Sharpe, L., Robertson, R., Butow, P. (2012). Quantity vs. Quality: An Exploration of the Predictors of Posttreatment Sexual Adjustment for Women Affected by Early Stage Cervical and Endometrial Cancer. Journal of Sexual Medicine, 9(11), 2952-2960. [More Information]

2018

  • Obermair, H., Dodd, R., Bonner, C., Jansen, J., McCaffery, K. (2018). 'It has saved thousands of lives, so why change it?' Content analysis of objections to cervical screening programme changes in Australia. BMJ Open, 8(2), 1-8. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., Fajardo, M., Hui, S., Stubbs, R., Trevena, L. (2018). Clinical validity, understandability, and actionability of online cardiovascular disease risk calculators: Systematic review. JMIR Research Protocols, 20(2), 1-11. [More Information]
  • Traeger, A., Reed, B., O'Connor, D., Hoffmann, T., De Carvalho Machado, G., Bonner, C., Maher, C., Buchbinder, R. (2018). Clinician, patient and general public beliefs about diagnostic imaging for low back pain: protocol for a qualitative evidence synthesis. BMJ Open, 8(2), e019470. [More Information]
  • Weir, K., Nickel, B., Naganathan, V., Bonner, C., McCaffery, K., Carter, S., McLachlan, A., Jansen, J. (2018). Decision-Making Preferences and Deprescribing: Perspectives of Older Adults and Companions About Their Medicines. Journal of Gerontology Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences, 73(7), e98-e107. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., McKinn, S., Lau, A., Jansen, J., Doust, J., Trevena, L., McCaffery, K. (2018). Heuristics and biases in cardiovascular disease prevention: How can we improve communication about risk, benefits and harms? Patient Education and Counseling, 101(5), 843-853. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., Spinks, C., Semsarian, C., Barratt, A., Ingles, J., McCaffery, K. (2018). Psychosocial Impact of a Positive Gene Result for Asymptomatic Relatives at Risk of Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy. Journal of Genetic Counseling, 27(5), 1040-1048. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., Bell, K., Jansen, J., Glasziou, P., Irwig, L., Doust, J., McCaffery, K. (2018). Should heart age calculators be used alongside absolute cardiovascular disease risk assessment? BMC Cardiovascular Disorders, 18(1), 1-8. [More Information]

2017

  • Jansen, J., McKinn, S., Bonner, C., Irwig, L., Doust, J., Glasziou, P., Bell, K., Naganathan, V., McCaffery, K. (2017). General practitioners' decision making about primary prevention of cardiovascular disease in older adults: A qualitative study. PloS One, 12(1), 1-13. [More Information]
  • Trevena, L., Shepherd, H., Bonner, C., Jansen, J., Cust, A., Leask, J., Shadbolt, N., Del Mar, C., McCaffery, K., Hoffmann, T. (2017). Shared decision making in Australia in 2017 [Partizipative Entscheidungsfindung in Australien im Jahr 2017]. German Journal for Evidence and Quality in Health Care (Zeitschrift fur Evidenz, Fortbildung und Qualitaet im Gesundheitswesen), 123-124, 17-20. [More Information]

2016

  • McKinn, S., Bonner, C., Jansen, J., Teixeira-Pinto, A., So, M., Irwig, L., Doust, J., Glasziou, P., McCaffery, K. (2016). Factors influencing general practitioners' decisions about cardiovascular disease risk reassessment: Findings from experimental and interview studies. BMC Family Practice, 17(1), 1-9. [More Information]
  • Jansen, J., Naganathan, V., Carter, S., McLachlan, A., Nickel, B., Irwig, L., Bonner, C., Doust, J., Colvin, J., Heaney, A., McCaffery, K., et al (2016). Too much medicine in older people? Deprescribing through shared decision making. BMJ, 353, 1-6. [More Information]

2015

  • Juraskova, I., Butow, P., Fisher, A., Bonner, C., Anderson, C., Bu, S., Scarlet, J., Stockler, M., Wetzig, N., Ung, O., et al (2015). Development and piloting of a decision aid for women considering participation in the Sentinel Node Biopsy versus Axillary Clearance 2 breast cancer trial. Clinical Trials, 12(4), 409-417. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., Jansen, J., McKinn, S., Irwig, L., Doust, J., Glasziou, P., McCaffery, K. (2015). How Do General Practitioners and Patients Make Decisions About Cardiovascular Disease Risk? Health Psychology, 34(3), 253-261. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., Jansen, J., Newell, B., Irwig, L., Teixeira-Pinto, A., Glasziou, P., Doust, J., McKinn, S., McCaffery, K. (2015). Is the "Heart Age" Concept Helpful or Harmful Compared to Absolute Cardiovascular Disease Risk? An Experimental Study. Medical Decision Making, 35(8), 967-978. [More Information]
  • McKinn, S., Bonner, C., Jansen, J., McCaffery, K. (2015). Recruiting general practitioners as participants for qualitative and experimental primary care studies in Australia. Australian Journal of Primary Health, 21(3), 354-359. [More Information]
  • Jansen, J., McKinn, S., Bonner, C., Irwig, L., Doust, J., Glasziou, P., Nickel, B., van Munster, B., McCaffery, K. (2015). Systematic review of clinical practice guidelines recommendations about primary cardiovascular disease prevention for older adults. BMC Family Practice, 16(1), 1-13. [More Information]

2014

  • Bonner, C., Jansen, J., McKinn, S., Irwig, L., Doust, J., Glasziou, P., McCaffery, K. (2014). Communicating cardiovascular disease risk: an interview study of General Practitioners' use of absolute risk within tailored communication strategies. BMC Family Practice, 15(1), 1-8. [More Information]
  • Jansen, J., Bonner, C., McKinn, S., Irwig, L., Glasziou, P., Doust, J., Teixeira-Pinto, A., Hayden, A., Turner, R., McCaffery, K. (2014). General practitioners' use of absolute risk versus individual risk factors in cardiovascular disease prevention: an experimental study. BMJ Open, 4(5), 1-7. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., Jansen, J., Newell, B., Irwig, L., Glasziou, P., Doust, J., Dhillon, H., McCaffery, K. (2014). I Don't Believe It, But I'd Better Do Something About It: Patient Experiences of Online Heart Age Risk Calculators. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 16(5), 1-17. [More Information]
  • Juraskova, I., Butow, P., Bonner, C., Bell, M., Smith, A., Seccombe, M., Boyle, F., Reaby, L., Cuzick, J., Forbes, J. (2014). Improving decision making about clinical trial participation - a randomised controlled trial of a decision aid for women considering participation in the IBIS-II breast cancer prevention trial. British Journal of Cancer, 111(1), 1-17. [More Information]

2013

  • Juraskova, I., Bonner, C. (2013). Decision aids for breast cancer chemoprevention. Breast Cancer Research, 15(5), 1-2. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., Jansen, J., McKinn, S., Irwig, L., Doust, J., Glasziou, P., Hayen, A., McCaffery, K. (2013). General practitioners' use of different cardiovascular risk assessment strategies: a qualitative study. Medical Journal of Australia, 199(7), 485-489. [More Information]
  • Juraskova, I., Butow, P., Bonner, C., Robertson, R., Sharpe, L. (2013). Sexual adjustment following early stage cervical and endometrial cancer: prospective controlled multi-centre study. Psycho-Oncology, 22(1), 153-159. [More Information]

2012

  • Lim, S., Vos, E., Flaxman, A., Danaei, G., Shibuya, K., Adair-Rohani, H., Amann, M., Anderson, H., Andrews, K., Aryee, M., Blyth, F., Bonner, C., Chen, J., Darling, S., Driscoll, T., Jacklyn, G., Leigh, J., March, L., Orchard, J., Passmore, E., Sanchez Riera, L., Smith, E., Wilson, N., et al (2012). A comparative risk assessment of burden of disease and injury attributable to 67 risk factors and risk factor clusters in 21 regions, 1990-2010: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2010. The Lancet, 380(9859), 2224-2260. [More Information]
  • Bonner, C., Nattress, K., Anderson, C., Carter, J., Milross, C., Philp, S., Juraskova, I. (2012). Chore or priority? Barriers and facilitators affecting dilator use after pelvic radiotherapy for gynaecological cancer. Supportive Care in Cancer, 20(10), 2305-2313. [More Information]
  • Fisher, A., Bonner, C., Biankin, A., Juraskova, I. (2012). Factors influencing intention to undergo whole genome screening in future healthcare: A single-blind parallel-group randomised trial. Preventive Medicine, 55, 514-520. [More Information]
  • Juraskova, I., Bonner, C., Bell, M., Sharpe, L., Robertson, R., Butow, P. (2012). Quantity vs. Quality: An Exploration of the Predictors of Posttreatment Sexual Adjustment for Women Affected by Early Stage Cervical and Endometrial Cancer. Journal of Sexual Medicine, 9(11), 2952-2960. [More Information]

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