Associate Professor

Department of Pharmacy and Health Systems Science, School of Pharmacy, Bouvé College of Health Sciences




Becky Briesacher, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor in the School of Pharmacy, Department of Pharmacy and Health Systems Sciences. She is a health services researcher with nationally-recognized expertise in prescription drug policy and medication use in older adults. She has an established body of research that shows financial barriers and insurance disincentives can impede the dissemination and adoption of evidence-based medication prescribing and adherence.

Dr. Briesacher has over 10 years of academic research experience and she is joining Northeastern after a successful research career at the University of Massachusetts Medical School.  Her research has received funding from National Institutes of Health, FDA, Agency of Health Care Quality and Research, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, The Commonwealth Fund, The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, and AARP.  She has published over 70 peer-reviewed articles in such journals as JAMA, Journal of General Internal Medicine, and Medical Care.  Dr. Briesacher has a bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Berkeley, a master’s degree from Williams College, and a doctorate from the University of Maryland.


Research Interests:

Prescription drug policy, Medicare Part D, Nursing Home policy, methodology


Classes Taught:

Health Care Policy
Advanced Research Methods


Recent Publications:

Briesacher BA, Tjia J, Peterson D, Field TS, Gurwitz JH.  Antipsychotic Use and Nursing Home Residents. JAMA, 2013;309(5):440-442. PMID: 23385262


Tjia J. Velten SJ. Parsons C. Valluri S. Briesacher BA. Studies to reduce unnecessary medication use in frail older adults: a systematic review. Drugs & Aging. 30(5):285-307, 2013 May. PMID: 23475597


Pimentel CB, Lapane KL, Briesacher BA.  Medicare Part D and Long-Term Care: A Systematic Review of Quantitative and Qualitative Evidence, Drugs & Aging 2013 Sep;30(9):701-20. PMID:23729166


Briesacher BA, Soumerai SB, Zhang F, Toh S, Andrade SE, Wagner JL, Shoaibi A, Gurwitz JH. A critical review of methods to evaluate the impact of FDA regulatory actions. Pharmacoepidemiol Drug Saf. 2013 Jul 12. PMID: 23847020


Cuffee YL, Hargraves JL, Rosal M, Briesacher BA, Schoenthaler A, Person S, Hullett S, Allison J. Reported Racial Discrimination, Trust in Physicians, and Medication Adherence Among Inner-City African Americans with Hypertension.  Am J Public Health. 2013 Nov;103(11):e55-62. PMID:24028222.


Tjia J. Field T. Lemay C. Mazor K. Pandolfi M. Spenard A. Ho SY. Kanaan A. Donovan J. Gurwitz JH. Briesacher B. Antipsychotic use in nursing homes varies by psychiatric consultant. Medical Care. 52(3):267-71, 2014 Mar.


Naci H, Soumerai SB, Ross-Degnan D, Zhao Y, Zhang F, Briesacher BA, Gurwitz JH. Madden JM.  Persistent Medication Affordability Problems Among Disabled Medicare Beneficiaries after Part D, 2006-2011. Medical Care 2014: 14 August. PMID 25122530.


Naci H, Soumerai SB, Ross-Degnan D, Zhao Y, Zhang F, Briesacher BA, Gurwitz JH. Madden JM. Medication Affordability Gains After Part D Are Eroding Among Elderly with Chronic Conditions. Health Affairs 2014: Aug;33(8):1435-43.


Tjia J. Briesacher BA. Petersen D.  Liu Q. Andrade SE.  Mitchell SL. Use of Medications with Questionable Benefit in Advanced Dementia.  JAMA Internal Medicine 2014: Sept. 8. PMID 25201279.