Nicole Harlaar

Principal Research Associate


Nicole Harlaar, PhD, is a Principal Research Associate for Public Health and a seasoned mixed-methods researcher with expertise in maternal and child health. Drawing on over 15 years of experience in research, evaluation, and technical assistance, she works collaboratively with government agencies, community organizations, and researchers to improve health care quality and outcomes. Key areas of interest include community-engaged implementation science, health and human services integration, and health care delivery, policy, and payment reform.

Harlaar, who leads Westat’s Maternal Health Coordinating Council, has served in leadership and subject matter expert roles on projects funded by multiple HHS agencies, including NIH, CMS, HRSA, and SAMHSA. She is committed to promoting community engagement, encouraging cross-sector collaboration, and enhancing the effectiveness of health policies and practices to eliminate inequities in maternal and child health.


  • PhD, Epidemiology, King’s College London
  • BSc, Psychology, University of Wales Swansea, UK


Deep Dive with Our Experts

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  • Issue Brief

    Doula Support in Black Maternal Health

    April 2024

    The U.S. currently faces a crisis in Black maternal health. Black women die from pregnancy complications at a rate 2 to 4 times higher than…

  • Perspective

    Spotlight on Maternal Mental Health

    March 2024

    Mental health conditions are the most common complications during pregnancy and the postpartum period. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) identifies mental health…

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