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Lisa A. Cooper, M.D., M.P.H.

James F. Fries Professor of Medicine
Professor of Medicine


  • James F. Fries Professor of Medicine
  • Professor, Nursing, Epidemiology, Health Policy & Management, Health Behavior & Society
  • Director, Johns Hopkins Center to Eliminate Cardiovascular Health Disparities
  • Core Faculty, Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology, and Clinical Research
  • Core Faculty, Armstrong Instute for Patient Safety and Quality
  • Professor of Medicine

Centers & Institutes

  • Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality
  • Johns Hopkins Center to Eliminate Cardiovascular Health Disparities
  • Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology, and Clinical Research


Epidemiology, Health services research, Hypertension, Primary Care

Research Interests

Patient-Physician relationship and communication; Patient-centered care; Race/ethnic health disparities


Dr. Lisa A. Cooper is the James F. Fries Professor of Medicine in the Division of General Internal Medicine at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. She is also a core faculty member of the Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology and Clinical Research. She has joint appointments in the Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing and Bloomberg School of Public Health.

The author of over 130 research articles and several book chapters, and the principal investigator of 14 research grants from the National Institutes of Health and several private foundations, she is an internationally recognized expert on the effectiveness of patient-centered interventions (e.g., physician communication skills and cultural competence training, patient shared decision-making and self-management skills training) for improving health outcomes and overcoming racial and ethnic disparities in healthcare. Dr. Cooper has received  several awards for her work in health disparities, including election to the American Society for Clinical Investigation, Delta Omega Public Health Honorary Society, and the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences. In 2007, Dr. Cooper was a recipient of the prestigious MacArthur Fellowship "Genius" Grant. In 2011, she was named an inaugural Gilman Scholar at Johns Hopkins University, and in 2012, she was named to an endowed professorship, the James F. Fries Professorship in Medicine, at Johns Hopkins.

Dr. Cooper has made important contributions to diversity initiatives in medicine. In 2006, she received the Herbert Nickens Award for exceptional contributions to cultural diversity in medicine from the Society of General Internal Medicine. In addition, she has helped Johns Hopkins prioritize its activities to promote a more diverse and inclusive environment, deliver equitable care to patients, and engage the community.

Dr. Cooper has served on the boards of several community organizations and institutions, including Howard County General Hospital in Columbia, Maryland and the Liberia Renaissance Foundation and the Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington D.C. She has received awards for community partnership and advocacy in Baltimore from the Mental Health Association of Maryland; Bethel AME Church; Associated Black Charities; the National Coalition of 100 Black Women; and Monumental Medical Society. In February 2010, she was listed as one of The Grio's 100 History Makers in the Making. In 2011, she was appointed by Governor O'Malley to the Maryland Health Care Quality and Costs Council where a special workgroup on disparities madevrecommendations leading to the passage of the Maryland Health Improvement and Disparities Reduction Act of 2012. In 2013, she was honored with the Watkins-Saunders Award from the American Heart Association for excellence in clinical, medical, and community work focused on diminishing healthcare disparities in Maryland. Dr. Cooper has testified at U.S. Congressional hearings regarding health disparities, diversity in the healthcare workforce, cultural competency training of health professionals, and funding for biomedical research.

Dr. Cooper is also a devoted mentor to faculty, post-doctoral fellows, residents, public health, nursing, medical, and undergraduate students. She is the principal investigator of an NIH-funded research and training Center for Population Health and Health Disparities (The Hopkins Center to Eliminate Cardiovascular Disparities). The Center's goal is to lower the impact of cardiovascular health disparities on vulnerable populations in Baltimore by using principles of community-based participatory research (CBPR) to build strong ties among researchers, healthcare provider networks, community members, and policy-makers.


  • English

Clinical Trial Keywords

  • hypertension, cardiovascular disease, healthcare disparities, quality improvement, patient-physician communication, patient-centered care, cultural competence, community-based participatory research, pragmatic trials, comparative effectiveness trials
Additional Resources +
  • Education +


    • Bachelor of Arts, Emory College, Atlanta, Georgia, 1984, Chemistry
    • Doctor of Medicine, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, 1988, Medicine
    • Master of Public Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland, 1993, Epidemiology


    • University of Maryland Medical Center, Baltimore, Maryland, 1991, Internal Medicine


    • Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland, 1994, General Internal Medicine
  • Research & Publications +

    Selected Publications

    Cooper LA, Boulware LE, Miller ER 3rd, Golden SH, Carson KA, Noronha G, Huizinga MM, Roter DL, Yeh HC, Bone LR, Levine DM, Hill-Briggs F, Charleston J, Kim M, Wang NY, Aboumatar H, Halbert JP, Ephraim PL, Brancati FL. Creating a Transdisciplinary Research Center to Reduce Cardiovascular Health Disparities in Baltimore, Maryland: Lessons Learned. Am J Public Health 2013;103(11):e26-38.

    Cooper LA, Marsteller JA, Noronha GJ, Flynn SJ, Carson KA, Boonyasai RT, Anderson CA, Aboumatar HJ, Roter DL, Dietz KD, Miller ER, Prokopowicz GP, Dalcin AT, Charleston JB, Simmons M, Huizinga MM.A multi-level system quality improvement intervention to reduce racial disparities in hypertension care and control: study protocol. Implement Sci 2013, 8:60.

    Brewer LC, Carson KA, Williams DR, Allen A, Jones CP, Cooper LA. Association of Race Consciousness With the Patient-Physician Relationship, Medication Adherence, and Blood Pressure in Urban Primary Care Patients. Am J Hypertens 2013 Jul 17 [Epub ahead of print].

    Martin KD, Roter DL, Beach MC, Carson KA, Cooper LA. Physician communication behaviors and trust among black and white patients with hypertension. Med Care 2013 Feb;51(2):151-7.

    Cooper LA, Ghods Dinoso BK, Ford DE, Roter DL, Primm AB, Larson SM, Gill JM, Noronha GJ, Shaya EK, Wang NY. Comparative effectiveness of standard versus patient-centered collaborative care interventions for depression among African Americans in primary care settings: the BRIDGE Study. Health Serv Res 2013,348(1):150-74.

    Cooper LA, Roter DL, Carson KA, Beach MC, Sabin JA, Greenwald AG, Inui TS. The associations of clinicians' implicit attitudes about race with medical visit communication and patient ratings of interpersonal care. Am J Public Health 2012; 102(5):979-87.

    Cooper LA, Roter DL, Carson KA, Bone LR, Larson SM, Miller ER 3rd, Barr MS, Levine DM. A randomized trial to improve patient-centered care and hypertension control in underserved primary care patients. J Gen Intern Med 2011; 26(11):1297-304.

    Cené CW, Roter D, Carson KA, Miller ER 3rd, Cooper LA. The effect of patient race and blood pressure control on patient-physician communication. J Gen Intern Med 2009; 24(9):1057-64.

    Cooper LA. A 41-year-old African American man with poorly controlled hypertension: review of patient and physician factors related to hypertension treatment adherence. JAMA 2009;301(12):1260-72.

    Cooper LA, Roter DL, Bone LR, Larson SM, Miller ER 3rd, Barr MS, Carson KA, Levine DM. A randomized controlled trial of interventions to enhance patient-physician partnership, patient adherence and high blood pressure control among ethnic minorities and poor persons: study protocol NCT00123045. Implement Sci 2009;4:7.

    Casagrande SS, Gary TL, LaVeist TA, Gaskin DJ, Cooper LA. Perceived discrimination and adherence to medical care in a racially integrated community. J Gen Intern Med 2007;22(3):389-95.

    Cooper LA, Beach MC, Johnson RL, Inui TS. Delving below the surface. Understanding how race and ethnicity influence relationships in health care. J Gen Intern Med 2006;21 Suppl 1:S21-7. Review.

    Johnson RL, Roter D, Powe NR, Cooper LA. Patient race/ethnicity and quality of patient-physician communication during medical visits. Am J Public Health 2004;94(12):2084-90.

    Cooper LA, Roter DL, Johnson RL, Ford DE, Steinwachs DM, Powe NR. Patient-centered communication, ratings of care, and concordance of patient and physician race. Ann Intern Med 2003;139(11):907-15.

    Boulware LE, Cooper LA, Ratner LE, LaVeist TA, Powe NR. Race and trust in the health care system. Public Health Rep 2003;118(4):358-65.

    Cooper LA, Hill MN, Powe NR. Designing and evaluating interventions to eliminate racial and ethnic disparities in health care. J Gen Intern Med 2002;17(6):477-86. Review.

    Cooper-Patrick L, Gallo JJ, Gonzales JJ, Vu HT, Powe NR, Nelson C, Ford DE. Race, gender, and partnership in the patient-physician relationship. JAMA 1999;282(6):583-9.

    Clinical Trials

    Project ReD CHiP

    The Bridge Study

    Patient-Physician Partnership Study

  • Academic Affiliations & Courses +
  • Activities & Honors +


    Member, American Association of Physicians

    Member, American Society for Clinical investigation 

    Fellow, John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

    Member, Delta Omega Honorary Society in Public Health

    Member, Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Science

    Fellow, American College of Physicians (ACP)

    James D. Bruce Memorial Award for Distinguished Contributions to Preventive Medicine, ACP

    Herbert W. Nickens Award for exceptional commitment to cultural diversity in medicine and improving minority health, Society of General Internal Medicine

    George Engel Research Award, American Academy of Communication in Healthcare

    100 “History Makers in the Making" by MSNBC's

    Distinguished Alumni Award, Emory College

    Gilman Scholar, Johns Hopkins University

    James F. Fries Professorship in Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

    Professional Activities

    Fellow, Picker/Commonwealth Scholars Program in Patient-Centered Care Research, The Commonwealth Fund

    Harold Amos Medical Faculty Development Program Scholar, The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
  • Videos & Media +


    Lisa Cooper: Women as Pioneers in Medicine, Then and Now

    MacArthur "Genius" Lisa Cooper, M.D., MPH, follows in her father's footsteps to pursue a medical career, researching disparities in health care, but she also gives credit to Mary Elizabeth Garrett, whose generosity helped the John Hopkins School of Medicine open and ensured the admission of women.

    Lisa Cooper, JHU Researcher - United for Medical Research

    Dr. Cooper speaks about the importance of federal support for research to identify solutions to health disparities in a Profiles of Promise Launch Event at the U.S. Capitol in February 2011

    Public Health Physician Lisa Cooper: 2007 MacArthur Fellow

    Public health physician Lisa Cooper was named a MacArthur Fellow in 2007. The Fellowship is a $500,000, no-strings-attached grant for individuals who have shown exceptional creativity in their work and the promise to do more.

    The Psychology of Blink: Understanding How Our Minds Work Unconsciously - Part 2 of 2

    Recent psychological research has revealed widely-held unconscious thought patterns that most people would rather not possess. In this program from the University of Washington psychology department, MacArthur awardee Dr. Lisa Cooper, John Hopkins University School of Medicine, describes her research on how patient race influences patient-physician communication and physician clinical decision making. She also includes her efforts to design interventions to negate these undesired racial and ethnic health care disparities.

    Solving the Health Disparities Conundrum: Race Relationships and Quality of Health Care

    NIH Wednesday Afternoon Lecture Series, May 11, 2011

    Tackling Ethnic Health Disparities: Lisa Cooper at TEDEx Baltimore 2014

    Dr. Cooper is an internationally recognized health services researcher and medical educator at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. She has developed interventions that enhance patient-physician communication, improve health outcomes and reduce healthcare disparities. She is a 2007 recipient of the prestigious MacArthur Foundation "Genius" Award.

    In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)

  • Events +
  • Contact & Locations +


    • Medicine - General Internal Medicine

    For Research Inquiries Contact

    Jennifer P. Halbert, MSPH, CPH
    Project Manager
    Johns Hopkins Center to Eliminate Cardiovascular Health Disparities
    2024 E. Monument St., Suite 2-500
    Baltimore, MD 21287

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