Sonja Elizabeth Hall
Sonja Hall
2005-06 Harkness Fellow
Health services researcher
Senior government adviser
Lecturer in health systems, policy and economics
School of Population Health
The University of Western Australia

Harkness Project Title: 

Breast and Colorectal Cancer Screening and Care for Disadvantaged Groups:  The Role of Non-Government Organizations in Bridging the Research-to-Policy Gap

Mentors: Ernest Moy, M.D., and Carolyn Clancy, M.D.

Placement: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ)

Biography at time of Harkness Fellowship: Sonĵa Hall, Ph.D., a 2005-06 Commonwealth Fund Harkness Fellow in Health Care Policy, is a health services researcher, senior government adviser and a lecturer in health systems, policy and economics in the School of Population Health at The University of Western Australia. She has a strong interest in health care inequalities, culminating in a Ph.D. on health care inequalities and outcomes in Western Australia after a diagnosis of cancer. Her other research interests are in the effectiveness and equity of health services for various disadvantaged groups, including children with disabilities, frail older adults, people from low socioeconomic groups, those living in rural areas, and those without private health insurance. As a strong advocate for transferring research into practice and policy, she has advised various government and non-government organizations on the policy implications of her work. She has published extensively on health care for disadvantaged groups and other social justice issues and in the fields of health economics and management.

Project: Hall investigated why advocacy organizations have been successful in changing breast cancer screening and treatment policy for disadvantaged groups, but not for colorectal cancer.  She identified and interviewed cancer advocates about the historical, present, and future issues surrounding advocacy, and triangulated those views with senior government officials’.  

Career Activity Since Fellowship

  • Director Policy, Strategy and Service Planning, Department of Health and Human Services, Hobart, Tasmania, 2009
  • Program Director of Health Sciences, University of Queensland, 2006
  • Senior Adviser and Director, Department of Health and Ageing, 2006

Current Position: Director of Policy, Strategy and Service Planning, Department of Health and Human Services, Tasmania (Updated January 2012)