Rae Jean Proeschold-Bell, Ph.D., focuses her research on the joint treatment of mental and physical health. She has research interests in the areas of positive mental health, clergy health, hepatitis C, and integration of care within systems. As someone trained in both clinical and community psychology, Rae Jean is interested in the impact of systems on individuals, and also in the environmental contexts experienced by individuals. Currently, Rae Jean is co-Principal Investigator of the Duke University Clergy Health Initiative, which seeks to understand and improve the health of United Methodist clergy in North Carolina, and includes a two-year holistic health intervention for clergy called Spirited Life.
Rae Jean is PI of Caregiver Flourishing, an interdisciplinary, cross-cultural study seeking to understand pathways for caregivers sustaining positive mental health while caring for people who are suffering through interviews, surveys, and diaries of caregivers of orphans living in four countries (India, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Cambodia) and of four religious traditions (Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, and Buddhism). This study is funded by the John Templeton Foundation and Saint Louis University.
In addition, Rae Jean is multiple PI, with Andrew Muir, MD, on an NIH-funded randomized controlled trial testing an innovative integration treatment model for persons with hepatitis C and alcohol use (Hep ART). The treatment model integrates mental and physical health care through enhanced systems at the clinic level (e.g., placing addictions therapists on-site in liver clinics) and through therapy content (e.g., sessions discussing liver health, nutrition, stress, and alcohol use).
As Advisor and Founding Director of the DGHI Evidence Lab, Rae Jean seeks to improve the world's health through rigorous evaluation. She strives to use and improve upon innovative research designs, and has conducted under-utilized yet high-inference research designs, including Interrupted Time Series analysis and randomized multiple baseline designs.
Proeschold-Bell, R.J., Turner, E. L., Bennett, G. G., Yao, J., Li, X.-F., Eagle, D. E., Meyer, R. A., Williams, R. B., Swift, R. Y., Moore, H. E., Kolkin, M. A., Weisner, C. C., Rugani, K. M., Hough, H. J., Williams, V. P., & Toole, D. C. (Forthcoming). A 2-year holistic health and stress intervention: Results of an RCT in clergy. American Journal of Preventive Medicine
Smith, T.W., Eagle, D.E., & Proeschold-Bell, R.J. (2017, February). Prospective associations between depressive symptoms and the metabolic syndrome: The Spirited Life study of United Methodist pastors. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, DOI 10.1007/s12160-017-9883-3
Adams, C., Hough, H., Proeschold-Bell, R.J., Yao, J., & Kolkin, M. (2016, July). Clergy burnout: A comparison study with other helping professions. Pastoral Psychology. DOI: 10.1007/s11089-016-0722-4. View
Proeschold-Bell, R.J., Smith, B., Eisenberg, A., LeGrand, S., Adams, C., & Wilk, A. (2015). The glory of God is a human being fully alive: Predictors of positive versus negative mental health among clergy. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, 54(4), 702-721. DOI: 10.1111/jssr.12234.