Darcell P. Scharff, Ph.D.
Associate Professor; Behavioral Science and Health Education
College for Public Health and Social Justice
Director; Public Health Practice
Director; The REACH Center
MCH 5000; MCH 5960; PUBH 371; BSH 500
Ph.D., Saint Louis University
R.N., Charity Hospital School of Nursing, New Orleans
M.Ed., University of New Orleans
B.S.N., Louisiana State University
Cultural competence; health disparities; maternal-child health; workforce preparedness.
Scharff is the Director of SLU's REACH Center: Research and Equity in Action for Child Health.
Publications and Media Placements
- Rotter B, Elliot M, Recktenwald A, Scharff, DP. The effect of dose of the St. Louis
Healthy Start Program and prenatal care adequacy on birth outcomes. Journal of Nursing Education and Practice. 2016, 6(2).
- Kelly CM, LaRose, J, Scharff, DP. A Method for Building Evaluation Competency Among
Community-based Organizations. Health Promotion Practice. DOI: 10.1177/1524839913496427, August, 2014. This paper won the SOPHE Health Promotion
Practice Journal paper of the year.
- Cooper, B. Scharff, D. Elliot, M. Haas, B. Impact of the St. Louis Healthy Start Program
on Birth Outcomes. Maternal Child Health Journal. August 2013, Volume 17, Issue 6, pp 1158-1165
Honors and Awards
- SLU Woman of the Year - 2009
- SOPHE Trophy - 2015
Professional Organizations and Associations
- American Public Health Association, member
- Society of Public Health Education, member
Community Work and Service
Scharff is the evaluator for Nurses for Newborns. In that role she work closely with
the staff to develop and carry out an evaluation plan according to the guidelines
set forth by the HRSA Home Visiting Evidence of Effectiveness (HOMVEE) program.
She regularly collaborates with local community agencies (e.g. St. Louis Maternal, Child, and Family Health Coalition, St. Louis Connect Care, St. Louis County and City Health Departments, American Cancer Society, Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, The St. Louis American, The St. Louis Regional Health Commission, and Mid America Transplant Services). She sits on the St. Louis Maternal, Child and Family Health Coalition FLOURISH cabinet that is charged with developing plans to reduce infant mortality in the St. Louis region.
In 2001, Scharff founded the volunteer-run Mother to Mother Telephone Support program, which provided support to pregnant and post-partum women who experience perinatal mood disorders. Now known as the MOMS Line, the program has expanded its metropolitan reach after shifting management to SSM Health in 2016. It continues be the only peer-support program in St. Louis for pregnant and new moms who are experiencing depression, anxiety and other mental health issues.