Dr Laura Wall

Dr Laura Wall

Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Newcastle Business School

Career Summary

Biography

I have worked at the University of Newcastle since 2015 as a casual academic and research assistant within Psychology and since 2019 as a post-doctoral research fellow within health economics.

My research uses and develops techniques from cognitive, mathematical and computational psychology as well as health economics to improve measurement of cognition, decision making and preferences. 

My PhD explored cognitive deficits in people with schizophrenia through the linear ballistic accumulator (LBA) model of decision making, and proposed a new framework for joint modelling across multiple tasks to improve measurement with fewer data points.

I have collaborated on a number of projects examining consumer preferences in oncology care through discrete choice experiments (DCE) and am currently working with a variety of health researchers examining patient preferences for different health services and research environments.

I am interested in more closely marrying the fields of psychology and health economics to establish optimal measurement of patient and consumer preferences to provide more evidence based patient preference research and more value based healthcare assessments. 



Qualifications

  • Doctor of Philosophy, University of Newcastle
  • Bachelor of Psychology, University of Newcastle

Keywords

  • cognition
  • decision making
  • discrete choice experiment

Fields of Research

Code Description Percentage
520402 Decision making 50
380108 Health economics 30
520499 Cognitive and computational psychology not elsewhere classified 20

Professional Experience

UON Appointment

Title Organisation / Department
Research Associate University of Newcastle
School of Psychology
Australia

Teaching appointment

Dates Title Organisation / Department
1/1/2015 - 31/12/2018 Casual Academic School of Psychology, Faculty of Science & IT, University of Newcastle
Australia
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Publications

For publications that are currently unpublished or in-press, details are shown in italics.


Journal article (11 outputs)

Year Citation Altmetrics Link
2021 Waller A, Wall L, Mackenzie L, Brown SD, Tattersall MHN, Sanson-Fisher R, 'Preferences for life expectancy discussions following diagnosis with a life-threatening illness: a discrete choice experiment', Supportive Care in Cancer, 29 417-425 (2021) [C1]

Purpose: To explore in a sample of adult cancer patients: (1) the relative influence of initiation source, information format and consultation format on preferred approach to life... [more]

Purpose: To explore in a sample of adult cancer patients: (1) the relative influence of initiation source, information format and consultation format on preferred approach to life expectancy disclosure using a discrete choice experiment (DCE); and (2) whether patient age, cancer type and perceived prognosis were associated with preferences within the three attributes. Methods: A DCE survey of adult solid tumour and haematological cancer patients. Participants chose between three hypothetical scenarios about life expectancy disclosure consisting of three attributes: initiation source (i.e. doctor versus patient-initiated discussion), information content (i.e. estimate presented as best-worst-typical length of life case scenario versus median survival time) and consultation format (i.e. two 20-min versus one 40-min consultation). Respondents selected their most preferred scenario within each question. Results: Three hundred and two patients completed the DCE (78% consent rate). Initiation source was the most influential predictor of patient choice. More preferred a doctor deliver life expectancy information as soon as it is available rather than waiting for the patient to ask (59% vs 41% z = - 7.396, p < 0.01). More patients preferred the two 20-min rather than the one 40-min consultation format (55% vs 45%, z = 4.284, p < 0.01). Information content did not influence choice. Age, cancer type, and patient-perceived prognosis were not associated with preferences. Conclusion: Healthcare professionals should assess cancer patients¿ preferences for engaging in life expectancy discussions as soon as they have this information, and ensure patients have adequate time to consider the information they receive, seek additional information and involve others if they wish.

DOI 10.1007/s00520-020-05498-7
Co-authors Rob Sanson-Fisher, Scott Brown, Lisa Mackenzie, Amy Waller
2020 Turon H, Wall L, Fakes K, Brown SD, Sanson-Fisher R, 'Cancer patient preferences for the provision of information regarding emotional concerns in relation to medical procedures: A discrete choice experiment', Patient Education and Counseling, 103 1439-1443 (2020) [C1]

Objective: To explore the preferences of people with cancer regarding the timing and format of information provision about emotional concerns that may occur when undergoing medica... [more]

Objective: To explore the preferences of people with cancer regarding the timing and format of information provision about emotional concerns that may occur when undergoing medical procedures. Methods: Eligible cancer survivors were mailed a survey containing discrete choice scenarios examining their timing and format preferences for information about potential emotional concerns associated with an upcoming hypothetical medical procedure. Results: Of 356 eligible patients, 271 (76 %) completed the survey. Both face-to-face discussion and written materials were preferred as the mode of information delivery over access to a website. In order of descending preference, participants preferred to receive the information 1 week, 3 days and the day of the procedure. There were no differences in preferences for timing or format between subgroups based on age, gender, education and cancer type. Conclusion: This study has demonstrated that cancer patients prefer receiving information about emotional concerns that might be experienced as part of a medical procedure in either written or via face-to-face format, and one week before the procedure. Practice Implications: In order to provide patient-centred care, clinicians and the healthcare system more broadly should consider patient preferences for information delivery about upcoming medical procedures. Information: preparation for medical procedures; discrete choice; oncology; patient preference; emotional response.

DOI 10.1016/j.pec.2020.02.015
Co-authors Heidi Turon, Scott Brown, Rob Sanson-Fisher, Kristy Fakes
2020 Wall L, Gunawan D, Brown SD, Tran M-N, Kohn R, Hawkins GE, 'Identifying relationships between cognitive processes across tasks, contexts, and time', BEHAVIOR RESEARCH METHODS, 53 78-95 (2020)
DOI 10.3758/s13428-020-01405-4
Citations Scopus - 1
Co-authors Scott Brown, Guy Hawkins
2020 Higginson S, Milovanovic K, Gillespie J, Matthews A, Williams C, Wall L, et al., 'COVID-19: The need for an Australian economic pandemic response plan', Health Policy and Technology, 9 488-502 (2020) [C1]

Objectives: Pandemics pressure national governments to respond swiftly. Mitigation efforts created an imbalance between population health, capacity of the healthcare system and ec... [more]

Objectives: Pandemics pressure national governments to respond swiftly. Mitigation efforts created an imbalance between population health, capacity of the healthcare system and economic prosperity. Each pandemic arising from a new virus is unknown territory for policy makers, and there is considerable uncertainty of the appropriateness of responses and outcomes. Methods: A qualitative approach was used to review mixed sources of data including Australian reports, official government publications, and COVID-19 data to discern robust future responses. Publicly available epidemiological and economic data were utilised to provide insight into the impact of the pandemic on Australia's healthcare system and economy. Results: Policies implemented by the Australian Government to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 impacted the healthcare sector and economy. This paper incorporates lessons learned to inform optimal economic preparedness. The rationale for an economic response plan concomitant with the health pandemic plan is explored to guide Australian Government policy makers in ensuring holistic and robust solutions for future pandemics. Conclusions: In future, an Australian Economic Pandemic Response Plan will aid in health and economic system preparedness, whilst a strong Australian economy and strategic planning will ensure resilience to future pandemics.

DOI 10.1016/j.hlpt.2020.08.017
Co-authors Christopher M Williams, Francesco Paolucci, Adrian Melia, Madeleine Hinwood
2020 Wall L, Hinwood M, Lang D, Smith A, Bunzli S, Clarke P, et al., 'Attitudes of patients and surgeons towards sham surgery trials: a protocol for a scoping review of attributes to inform a discrete choice experiment', BMJ OPEN, 10 (2020)
DOI 10.1136/bmjopen-2019-035870
Co-authors Francesco Paolucci, Madeleine Hinwood, Danielle Lang
2020 Bunzli S, Choong E, Shadbolt C, Wall L, Nelson E, Schilling C, et al., 'Placebo Surgery Controlled Trials: Do They Achieve What They Set Out to do? A Systematic Review.', Ann Surg, Publish Ahead of Print (2020)
DOI 10.1097/SLA.0000000000004719
Co-authors Zsolt Balogh, Francesco Paolucci
2019 Hobden B, Turon H, Bryant J, Wall L, Brown S, Sanson-Fisher R, 'Oncology patient preferences for depression care: A discrete choice experiment', Psycho-Oncology, 28 807-814 (2019) [C1]

Objective: Using a vignette-style DCE in a sample of oncology patients, this study explored: (1) the relative influence of the patient&apos;s level of concern about their depressi... [more]

Objective: Using a vignette-style DCE in a sample of oncology patients, this study explored: (1) the relative influence of the patient's level of concern about their depression on preferences for care, (2) the relative influence of depression severity according to a mental health checklist on preferred treatment-seeking options, and (3) whether patient age and gender were associated with depression care preference. Methods: A discrete choice experiment (DCE) survey of cancer patients was conducted. Hypothetical vignettes to elicit care preferences were created using two attributes: the cancer patient's level of concern about depression (a little or a great deal) and results of a mental health checklist (not depressed or very depressed). Three response options for care preferences were presented, including a self-directed approach, shared care approach, and clinician-directed referral approach. Participants chose their most and least preferred options. Results: A total of 281 cancer patients completed the survey. There was a significant association between level of concern and the most preferred option. Those with a great deal of concern about depression preferred to receive referral from their clinician more than those with a little concern about depression. Males were significantly more likely to select a self-directed approach as their most preferred option. Conclusions: An oncology patient's level of concern about depression may influence the type of care they want to receive from their cancer doctor for depression. This finding has implications for depression screening in clinical practice.

DOI 10.1002/pon.5024
Citations Scopus - 1Web of Science - 1
Co-authors Bree Hobden, Heidi Turon, Scott Brown, Rob Sanson-Fisher, Jamie Bryant
2019 Zdenkowski N, Lynam J, Sproule V, Wall L, Searston J, Brown S, 'Results of a survey of cancer patients willingness to travel to participate in a clinical trial', Internal Medicine Journal, 49 1321-1325 (2019) [C1]

Only 2¿3% of cancer patients enrol in a trial. We surveyed patients&apos; willingness to change clinician or treating centre, or to travel, to participate in trials, to improve tr... [more]

Only 2¿3% of cancer patients enrol in a trial. We surveyed patients' willingness to change clinician or treating centre, or to travel, to participate in trials, to improve trial recruitment. Of 188 respondents, 79% were willing to participate in a trial in at least one scenario. Increasing travel time, change in oncologist, private health insurance and out of pocket expenses decreased likelihood of joining a trial. Rural and regional patients, and those from lower socio-economic areas, were more willing to travel. To optimise access to trials, clinicians should refer within and between institutions.

DOI 10.1111/imj.14456
Citations Scopus - 2Web of Science - 2
Co-authors Scott Brown, Nick Zdenkowski
2018 Herrmann A, Sanson-Fisher R, Hall A, Wall L, Zdenkowski N, Waller A, 'Support persons' preferences for the type of consultation and the format of information provided when making a cancer treatment decision', BMC Research Notes, 11 1-6 (2018) [C1]
DOI 10.1186/s13104-018-3552-x
Citations Scopus - 3
Co-authors Amy Waller, Rob Sanson-Fisher, Alix Hall, Nick Zdenkowski
2018 Waller A, Sanson-Fisher R, Brown SD, Wall L, Walsh J, 'Quality versus quantity in end-of-life choices of cancer patients and support persons: a discrete choice experiment', Supportive Care in Cancer, 26 3593-3599 (2018) [C1]

Objectives: To explore in a sample of medical oncology outpatients and their nominated support persons (SPs): (1) the relative influence of pain, consciousness and life extension ... [more]

Objectives: To explore in a sample of medical oncology outpatients and their nominated support persons (SPs): (1) the relative influence of pain, consciousness and life extension on end-of-life choices using a discrete choice experiment (DCE); (2) the extent to which SPs can predict the choices of index patients and (3) whether having a previous end-of-life discussion was associated with dyad agreement. Methods: Adult medical oncology patients and their SPs were approached for consent to complete a survey containing a DCE. Participants chose between three unlabelled care scenarios characterised by three attributes: pain (mild, moderate or severe), consciousness (some, half or most of time) and extension of life (1, 2 or 3¿weeks). Respondents selected (1) most-preferred and (2) least-preferred scenarios within each question. SPs answered the same questions but from patient¿s perspective. Results: A total of 110 patients and 64 SPs responded overall (42 matched patient-SP dyads). For patients, pain was the most influential predictor of most- and least-preferred scenarios (z = 12.5 and z = 12.9). For SPs, pain was the only significant predictor of most and least-preferred scenarios (z = 9.7 and z = 11.5). Dyad agreement was greater for choices about least- (69%) compared to most-preferred scenarios (55%). Agreement was slightly higher for dyads reporting a previous EOL discussion (68 versus 48%; p = 0.065). Conclusion: Patients and SPs place significant value on avoiding severe pain when making end-of-life choices, over and above level of consciousness or life extension. People¿s views about end-of-life scenarios they most as well as least prefer should be sought.

DOI 10.1007/s00520-018-4226-x
Citations Scopus - 3Web of Science - 3
Co-authors Rob Sanson-Fisher, Amy Waller, Scott Brown
2018 Herrmann A, Sanson-Fisher R, Hall A, Wall L, Zdenkowski N, Waller A, 'A discrete choice experiment to assess cancer patients preferences for when and how to make treatment decisions', Supportive Care in Cancer, 26 1215-1220 (2018) [C1]

Purpose: Cancer patients can be overwhelmed when being confronted with their diagnosis and treatment options. Such information is often provided during one consultation between th... [more]

Purpose: Cancer patients can be overwhelmed when being confronted with their diagnosis and treatment options. Such information is often provided during one consultation between the patient and treating clinician. In order to achieve optimal cancer care, there may be justification for alternative consultation styles. We assessed, in a sample of adult medical oncology patients, their preferences for (i) attending one 40-min consultation or two 20-min consultations and (ii) receiving written only or both written and online information, when making a cancer treatment decision. Methods: This was a cross-sectional survey using a discrete choice design of 159 adult medical oncology patients presenting for their second or subsequent outpatient consultation. Participants were presented with a set of hypothetical scenarios and asked to indicate their most and least preferred scenario. The scenarios contained a caveat explaining that there would be no difference between the available treatment options in terms of when treatment would be initiated and the impact it would have on patients¿ life expectancy. Results: One hundred forty-seven patients completed the DCE. Of these, 70% (n¿=¿103) preferred being provided with written and online information rather than just written information. This preference was statistically significant (p¿<¿0.01). Fifty-nine percent (n¿=¿86) of patients preferred two 20-min consultations over one 40-min consultation when making a treatment decision. Significantly, more patients preferred two shorter consultations rather than one longer consultation when this was combined with written and online information (p¿<¿0.01). Conclusion: When making a cancer treatment decision, clinicians should consider offering patients written and online information, combined with two shorter consultations.

DOI 10.1007/s00520-017-3944-9
Citations Scopus - 9Web of Science - 8
Co-authors Amy Waller, Alix Hall, Rob Sanson-Fisher, Nick Zdenkowski
Show 8 more journal articles

Conference (3 outputs)

Year Citation Altmetrics Link
2018 Herrmann A, Sanson-Fisher R, Hall A, Wall L, Zdenkowski N, Waller A, 'Comparing cancer patients' and support persons' preferences for the type of consultation and the format of information provided when making a treatment decision', ANNALS OF ONCOLOGY, Munich, GERMANY (2018)
Co-authors Amy Waller, Rob Sanson-Fisher, Nick Zdenkowski, Alix Hall
2017 Zdenkowski N, Lynam J, Wall L, Brown S, Sproule V, 'Results of a Survey Investigating Cancer Patients' Willingness to Travel to Participate in a Clinical Trial', ASIA-PACIFIC JOURNAL OF CLINICAL ONCOLOGY (2017)
Co-authors Nick Zdenkowski
2017 Zdenkowski N, Lynam JF, Wall L, Brown S, Wells K, Sproule V, 'Breast cancer patients' willingness to travel to participate in a clinical trial.', Journal of Clinical Oncology (2017)
DOI 10.1200/JCO.2017.35.15_suppl.e14031
Citations Web of Science - 1
Co-authors Scott Brown, Nick Zdenkowski

Other (2 outputs)

Year Citation Altmetrics Link
2020 Paolucci F, Lee D, Wall L, Hinwood M, Antonini M, 'A $200 fine for not wearing a mask is fair, as long as free masks go to those in need', (2020) [O1]
Co-authors Madeleine Hinwood, Francesco Paolucci, Doowon Lee
2020 Milovanovic K, Higginson S, Gillespie J, Wall L, Moy N, Hinwood M, et al., 'COVID-19: The Need for an Australian Economic Pandemic Response Plan', : SSRN (2020)
DOI 10.2139/ssrn.3663929
Co-authors Madeleine Hinwood, Francesco Paolucci, Christopher M Williams
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Research Projects

Patient preferences in oncology care 2015 -

Publications

Zdenkowski N, Lynam JF, Wall L, Brown S, Wells K, Sproule V, 'Breast cancer patients' willingness to travel to participate in a clinical trial.', Journal of Clinical Oncology (2017)

Zdenkowski N, Lynam J, Wall L, Brown S, Sproule V, 'Results of a Survey Investigating Cancer Patients' Willingness to Travel to Participate in a Clinical Trial', ASIA-PACIFIC JOURNAL OF CLINICAL ONCOLOGY (2017)

Herrmann A, Sanson-Fisher R, Hall A, Wall L, Zdenkowski N, Waller A, 'Comparing cancer patients' and support persons' preferences for the type of consultation and the format of information provided when making a treatment decision', ANNALS OF ONCOLOGY, Munich, GERMANY (2018)

Herrmann A, Sanson-Fisher R, Hall A, Wall L, Zdenkowski N, Waller A, 'Support persons' preferences for the type of consultation and the format of information provided when making a cancer treatment decision', BMC Research Notes, 11 1-6 (2018) [C1]

Waller A, Sanson-Fisher R, Brown SD, Wall L, Walsh J, 'Quality versus quantity in end-of-life choices of cancer patients and support persons: a discrete choice experiment', Supportive Care in Cancer, 26 3593-3599 (2018) [C1]

Herrmann A, Sanson-Fisher R, Hall A, Wall L, Zdenkowski N, Waller A, 'A discrete choice experiment to assess cancer patients preferences for when and how to make treatment decisions', Supportive Care in Cancer, 26 1215-1220 (2018) [C1]

Hobden B, Turon H, Bryant J, Wall L, Brown S, Sanson-Fisher R, 'Oncology patient preferences for depression care: A discrete choice experiment', Psycho-Oncology, 28 807-814 (2019) [C1]

Collaborators

Name Organisation
Doctor Amy Elizabeth Waller University of Newcastle
Miss Breanne Hobden
Ms Anne Herrmann University of Newcastle
Mr Justin Robert Walsh University of Newcastle
Doctor Heidi Erin Turon University of Newcastle
Professor Scott David Brown University of Newcastle
Doctor Nick Zdenkowski
Laureate Professor Robert William Sanson-Fisher University of Newcastle
Doctor Jamie Lee Bryant University of Newcastle
Doctor Alix Edna Hall University of Newcastle

Patient and Surgeon preferences for sham surgery trials 2019 -

Publications

Wall L, Hinwood M, Lang D, Smith A, Bunzli S, Clarke P, et al., 'Attitudes of patients and surgeons towards sham surgery trials: a protocol for a scoping review of attributes to inform a discrete choice experiment', BMJ OPEN, 10 (2020)

Bunzli S, Choong E, Shadbolt C, Wall L, Nelson E, Schilling C, et al., 'Placebo Surgery Controlled Trials: Do They Achieve What They Set Out to do? A Systematic Review.', Ann Surg, Publish Ahead of Print (2020)

Collaborators

Name Organisation
Professor Francesco Paolucci University of Newcastle
Doctor Madeleine Hinwood University of Newcastle
Ms Danielle Leigh Lang University of Newcastle

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Dr Laura Wall

Positions

Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Newcastle Business School
College of Human and Social Futures

Research Associate
School of Psychology
College of Engineering, Science and Environment

Contact Details

Email laura.wall@newcastle.edu.au
Phone (02) 4033 9228

Office

Room X-7
Building NewSpace
Location City Campus

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