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Shelley White

Shelley White, MSW, PhD

Languages spoken: English

Academic Information

Departments Adjunct - Psychiatry

Divisions: Adult Psychiatry

Academic Office Information

Research Interests

  • Arts-Based Medicine
  • Wellness
  • Mindfulness
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Music Therapy
  • Integrative Medicine
  • Cancer Related Fatigue

Shelley White, PhD, LCSW, (She/Her/Hers) is an Assistant Adjunct Professor (Research) in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Utah. Additionally, Dr. White manages the Huntsman Cancer Institute’s Wellness & Integrative Health Center at the University of Utah. She is an expert in educating patients, caregivers, and staff members about the benefits and value of integrative health interventions within a clinical medical practice setting. Possessing more than 30 years of experience in program development, strategic planning, conflict resolution, and patient care, she is interested in the transformation of our present US healthcare system from a disease-focused approach to a healthcare system that promotes and values low cost, non-invasive interventions to reduce physical and emotional distress. Promoting wellness and integrating health practice as a primary intervention may prevent illness and disease in the first place, in addition to reducing anxiety, fatigue, pain, psychosocial distress, and financial costs during the treatment of chronic diseases. The Wellness and Integrative Health Center at the Huntsman Cancer Institute offers many services to people affected by cancer. Uniquely, most therapeutic services are provided on-site within our clinical medical setting. As the administrator, she oversees over three dozen integrative oncology services.

Research Statement

Contributions focus on interventions to reduce psychosocial distress and improve symptom management for people affected by cancer. I have contributed to publications documenting the problem of distress in cancer and outlining interventions that can increase supportive psychological processes in cancer survivorship. I am a co-investigator on several projects related to mind-body factors in cancer survivorship, including a pilot randomized control trial of a mindfulness-based intervention for weight reduction of female cancer patients and an evaluation of a mind-body skills program. Patient care interventions include work with cancer rehabilitation, nutrition, massage, music therapy, and acupuncture. I have contributed to international integrative health presentations and publications. HCI’s Wellness & Integrative Health Center has served as a model program offering integrative health to people affected by cancer to address psychological and physical stress and symptom management. We deliver non-pharmacological interventions in various medical settings.

Selected Publications

Journal Article

  1. Zappa M, White S, Walker D, Walker K (2021). Strategies for efficient adaptation in a pandemic: A decision-making flowchart from an integrative oncology wellness center. Glob Adv Health Med, (10), 31-32.
  2. Coletta AM, Playdon MC, Baron KG, Wei M, Kelley K, Vaklavas C, Beck A, Buys SS, Chipman J, Ulrich CM, Walker D, White S, Oza S, Zingg RW, Hansen PA (2021). The association between time-of-day of habitual exercise training and changes in relevant cancer health outcomes among cancer survivors. PLoS One, 16(10), e0258135. (Read full article)
  3. Coletta AM, Rose NB, Johnson AF, Moxon DS, Trapp SK, Walker D, White S, Ulrich CM, Agarwal N, Oza S, Zingg RW, Hansen PA (2021). The impact of a hospital-based exercise oncology program on cancer treatment-related side effects among rural cancer survivors . Support Care Cancer, (29), 4663-4672.
  4. Thomas EA, Mijangos JL, Hansen PA, White S, Walker D, Reimers C, Beck AC, Garland EL (2019). Mindfulness-Oriented Recovery Enhancement Restructures Reward Processing and Promotes Interoceptive Awareness in Overweight Cancer Survivors: Mechanistic Results From a Stage 1 Randomized Controlled Trial. Integr Cancer Ther, 18, 1534735419855138. (Read full article)
  5. Garland EL, Thielking P, Thomas EA, Coombs M, White S, Lombardi J, Beck A (2016). Linking dispositional mindfulness and positive psychological processes in cancer survivorship: a multivariate path analytic test of the mindfulness-to-meaning theory. Psychooncology, 26(5), 686-692. (Read full article)
  6. Buchmann L, Conlee J, Hunt J, Agarwal J, White S (2013). Psychosocial distress is prevalent in head and neck cancer patients. Laryngoscope, 123(6), 1424-9. (Read full article)


  1. Ben-Arye E, Paller CJ, Lopez AM, White S, Pendleton E, Kienle GS, Samuels N, Abbawaajii N, Balneaves LG (2021). The Society for Integrative Oncology Practice Recommendations for online consultation and treatment during the COVID-19 pandemic. [Review]. Support Care Cancer, 29(10), 6155-6165. (Read full article)


  1. Lopez AM, Presson A, Budhathoki A, White S (2016). Revisiting the Interpretation (Editorial Comment on Acupuncture for Menopausal Hot Flashes: A Randomized Trail   [Letter to the editor]. Ann Intern Med, 165(6), 449-450.