Karen A. Kuhlthau, PhD

Adjunct Assistant Professor, Community Health Sciences - Boston University School of Public Health


Dr. Kuhlthau is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the Harvard Medical School, an Associate Sociologist at the Massachusetts General Hospital and MassGeneral Hospital for Children, and Adjunct Assistant Professor at the Boston University School of Public Health. Dr. Kuhlthau formerly worked in the department of Statistics and Evaluation at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health where she led evaluation and surveillance efforts. She currently conducts policy and clinically relevant public health research. She received her BA from Princeton University. Her doctorate and masters degrees in sociology/demography are from the University of Michigan.

She has a strong focus in both qualitative and quantitative methods with extensive experience using existing data and in primary data collection. Much of her research focuses on three main areas: 1) health services and health policy research, 2) the well-being of parents/caregivers as it relates to child health, and 3) health related quality of life (HRQOL) for children and families.

International work includes studies of gender differences in health in Thailand, evaluating the behavioral health services in Chile and an assessment of health service use in Jordan.


  • University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, PhD Field of Study: Population Sciences
  • University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, MA Field of Study: Population Sciences
  • Princeton University, AB Field of Study: Political Science


  • Published on 3/5/2023

    Fell LA, Albright CM, Kryszak EM, Butter E, Kuhlthau KA. Provider Perspectives on Telehealth Services for Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder During the Coronavirus Disease 2019 Pandemic. Acad Pediatr. 2023 Aug; 23(6):1196-1203. PMID: 36871611.

    Read At: PubMed
  • Published on 11/30/2022

    Kuhlthau KA, Traeger L, Luberto CM, Perez GK, Goshe BM, Fell L, Iannuzzi D, Park ER. Resiliency Intervention for Siblings of Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Randomized Pilot Trial. Acad Pediatr. 2023 Aug; 23(6):1187-1195. PMID: 36460184.

    Read At: PubMed
  • Published on 10/28/2022

    Fay C, Castro I, Sierra Velez D, Ruggiero CF, O'Connor G, Perkins M, Luo M, Sharifi M, Neri Mini F, Taveras EM, Kuhlthau K, Fiechtner L. Keys to Achieving Clinically Important Weight Loss: Perceptions of Responders and Nonresponders in the Clinic and Community Approaches to Healthy Weight Trial. Child Obes. 2022 Oct 28. PMID: 36315223.

    Read At: PubMed
  • Published on 8/25/2022

    Persaud A, Castro I, Simione M, Smith JD, O'Connor G, Sharifi M, Perkins M, Torres S, Taveras EM, Kuhlthau K, Fiechtner L. Multi-sector stakeholder's perceptions of determinants of successful implementation of a pediatric weight management intervention. Front Public Health. 2022; 10:954063. PMID: 36091513.

    Read At: PubMed
  • Published on 7/18/2022

    Garrity BM, Perrin JM, Rodean J, Houtrow AJ, Shelton C, Stille C, McLellan S, Coleman C, Mann M, Kuhlthau K, Desmarais A, Berry JG. Annual Days With a Health Care Encounter for Children and Youth Enrolled in Medicaid: A Multistate Analysis. Acad Pediatr. 2023 Mar; 23(2):441-447. PMID: 35863733.

    Read At: PubMed
  • Published on 7/14/2022

    Fenning RM, Butter EM, Norris M, Chan J, Macklin EA, McKinnon-Bermingham K, Albright C, Stephenson KG, Scherr J, Moffitt J, Hess A, Steinberg-Epstein R, Kuhlthau KA. Optimizing Parent Training to Improve Oral Health Behavior and Outcomes in Underserved Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. J Autism Dev Disord. 2023 Sep; 53(9):3683-3699. PMID: 35831693.

    Read At: PubMed
  • Published on 6/3/2022

    Fell L, Goshe B, Traeger L, Perez G, Iannuzzi D, Park E, Kuhlthau K, Luberto C. Acceptability of A Virtual Mind-Body Group Intervention for Teen Siblings of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. J Autism Dev Disord. 2022 Dec; 52(12):5243-5252. PMID: 35657446.

    Read At: PubMed
  • Published on 5/1/2022

    Fenning RM, Butter EM, Macklin EA, Norris M, Hammersmith KJ, McKinnon-Bermingham K, Chan J, Stephenson KG, Albright C, Scherr J, Moffitt JM, Lu F, Spaulding R, Guijon J, Hess A, Coury DL, Kuhlthau KA, Steinberg-Epstein R. Parent Training for Dental Care in Underserved Children With Autism: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Pediatrics. 2022 May 01; 149(5). PMID: 35211746.

    Read At: PubMed
  • Published on 4/29/2022

    Simione M, Harshman S, Cooper-Vince CE, Daigle K, Sorbo J, Kuhlthau K, Fiechtner L. Examining Health Conditions, Impairments, and Quality of Life for Pediatric Feeding Disorders. Dysphagia. 2023 Feb; 38(1):220-226. PMID: 35486189.

    Read At: PubMed
  • Published on 3/1/2022

    Kuhlthau KA, Ames SG, Ware A, Hoover CG, Wells N, Shelton C. Research on Family Health and Children and Youth With Special Health Care Needs. Acad Pediatr. 2022 03; 22(2S):S22-S27. PMID: 35248244.

    Read At: PubMed