Laura Larsson is a Professor of Nursing at Montana State University in Bozeman, Montana. Dr. Larsson is a clinical scholar and nurse educator with significant experience conducting community-based participatory health projects. Dr. Larsson’s interest is in improving access to primary care in high-priority communities. Dr. Larsson’s research addresses health disparities using risk communication, digital signage technology, and interprofessional outreach to respond to community health needs.
Her early work on reducing unintentional exposure to indoor radon concentrations demonstrated that young families with children, first-time testers, and renters should be the priority audiences for radon testing and risk communication messaging. Dr. Larsson also championed a risk-reduction approach to indoor environmental exposures to include low-income families in care planning and policymaking. Integrating a health disparities framework for environmental risk-reduction led to an invitation from the Blackfeet Nation to work with them on oral health risk-reduction. Dr. Larsson has established the infrastructure, developed the community partnerships, and built the capacity to conduct rigorous intervention research in tribal communities across Montana. Specific accomplishments include executing MOU’s with the IHS to install digital signage technology, creating and testing oral health messages in the IHS and WIC waiting areas, using Medicaid billing data to evaluate project impact, and complying with Tribal IRB oversight in seven sovereign nations. Project topics have included dental sealants, early dental attendance, and the use of silver diamine fluoride for temporary arrest of caries in dental provider shortage areas. Currently Dr. Larsson leads an interprofessional team of undergraduate nursing students and expanded function dental hygienists to deliver health screenings to Northern Cheyenne Head Start. Dr. Larsson is also Director of the Caring for Our Own Program (CO-OP) and manages $9 Million in grant funding for improving health in rural and American Indian communities.
Dr. Larsson received a BS from Lewis and Clark College, a BSN from Montana State University, and an MPH/PhD from Oregon Health and Science University.