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

Headshot of Lisa Angeline Cooper
  • Bloomberg Distinguished Professor, Equity in Health and Healthcare
  • Professor of Medicine

Languages: English, French


Epidemiology, Health Services Research, High Blood Pressure (Hypertension), Primary Care, Public Health more

Research Interests

Race/ethnic health disparities; Patient-centered care; Patient-Physician relationships and communication; Health equity; Global health more


Johns Hopkins Community Physicians - East Baltimore Medical Center


Dr. Lisa A. Cooper is a Bloomberg Distinguished Professor at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and Bloomberg School of Public Health.  She is also the James F. Fries Professor of Medicine in the Division of General Internal Medicine and a core faculty member in the Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology, and Clinical Research, and she holds a joint appointment in the School of Nursing. Dr. Cooper was born in Liberia, West Africa, where she witnessed the effects of social deprivation on the health of many of her fellow citizens and developed the passion for her career in medicine and public health.

A general internist, social epidemiologist, and health services researcher, Dr. Cooper was one of the first scientists to document disparities in the quality of relationships between physicians and patients from socially at-risk groups. She then designed innovative interventions targeting physicians’ communication skills, patients’ self-management skills, and healthcare organizations’ ability to address needs of populations experiencing health disparities. She is the author of over 250 publications and has been the principal investigator of more than 20 federal and private foundation grants. She has also been a devoted mentor to more than 70 individuals seeking careers in medicine, nursing, and public health.

Currently, Dr. Cooper directs The Johns Hopkins Center for Health Equity, where she and her transdisciplinary teamwork with stakeholders from healthcare and the community to implement rigorous clinical trials, identifying interventions that alleviate racial and income disparities in social determinants and health outcomes. The Center also provides training to a new generation of health equity scholars and advocates for social change with policymakers.

A compassionate physician, prolific researcher, and devoted mentor, Dr. Cooper has received several honors for her pioneering work. These include a prestigious 2007 MacArthur Fellowship, elected membership in the National Academy of Medicine, the American Society for Clinical Investigation, the Association of American Physicians, and Delta Omega Public Health Honor Society. She has been listed on Thomson Reuters’ top 1 percent “most cited” list for Social Sciences several times. Dr. Cooper has received the  George Engel Award from the American Academy on Communication in Healthcare, the James D. Bruce Memorial Award for Distinguished Contributions to Preventive Medicine from the American College of Physicians, the Herbert Nickens Award from the American Association of Medical Colleges for outstanding contributions to promoting social justice in medical education and health care equity, and the Helen Rodriguez-Trias Social Justice Award from the American Public Health Association.

With regard to mentoring, Dr. Cooper has received the David M. Levine Excellence in Mentoring Award from the Department of Medicine, The Sponsorship Award from the Women's Task Force of the Department of Medicine, the Vice-Dean’s Award for the Advancement of Women in Science, the Provost’s Inaugural Award for Excellence in Faculty Mentoring, and the Provost’s Inaugural Award for Excellence in Diversity.

Dr. Cooper has also been recognized by several community organizations, including the American Heart Association, Associated Black Charities, Monumental City Medical Society, the Maryland Mental Health Association, and the National Coalition for 100 Black Women for her community engagement and advocacy to address health disparities.

In 2011, Dr. Cooper was appointed by Governor Martin O'Malley to the Maryland Health Care Quality and Costs Council where a special workgroup on disparities made recommendations leading to the passage of the Maryland Health Improvement and Disparities Reduction Act of 2012.  She 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, and since 2020 has been a leading advisor to policymakers and the media regarding inequities in COVID-19 vaccination, infections, hospitalizations, and deaths, in the U.S. and around the world.

Dr. Cooper received her B.A. in Chemistry from Emory University and her M.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She completed her internship and residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Maryland Medical Center. She received her M.P.H. from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health while completing a postdoctoral fellowship in general internal medicine at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. more


  • Bloomberg Distinguished Professor, Equity in Health and Healthcare
  • James F. Fries Professor of Medicine
  • Director, Johns Hopkins Center for Health Equity
  • Director, Johns Hopkins Urban Health Institute
  • Core Faculty, Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology, and Clinical Research
  • Professor of Medicine

Departments / Divisions

Centers & Institutes



  • MD; University of North Carolina School of Medicine (1988)


  • Internal Medicine; University of Maryland School of Medicine (1991)


  • Internal Medicine; Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine (1994)

Board Certifications

  • American Board of Internal Medicine (Internal Medicine) (1991)

Additional Training

  • B.A, Chemistry, Emory College, Atlanta, Georgia, (1984) 
  • M.P.H, Epidemiology, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland, (1993)
  • General Internal Medicine Fellowship, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine (1994)

Research & Publications

Clinical Trial Keywords

hypertension, cardiovascular disease, healthcare disparities, health equity, global health, quality improvement, patient-physician communication, patient-centered care, cultural competence, community-based participatory research, pragmatic trials, comparative effectiveness trials

Clinical Trials

The Rich Life Project

The Five Plus Nuts and Beans for Kidneys Trial


Project ReD CHiP

ACT Study

The Five Plus Nuts and Beans Trial

The Bridge Study

The Patient-Physician Partnership Study

Selected Publications

View all on PubMed

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 Aug 11;282(6):583-9. PubMed PMID: 10450723

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 Dec 2;139(11):907-15. PubMed PMID: 14644893

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 Dec;94(12):2084-90. PubMed PMID: 15569958; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC1448596.

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 May;102(5):979-87. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2011.300558. PubMed PMID: 22420787; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3483913

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 Nov;103(11):e26-38. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2013.301297. PubMed PMID: 24028238; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3828697

Contact for Research Inquiries

Johns Hopkins Center for Health Equity
2024 E. Monument Street
Suite 2-500
Baltimore, MD 21287 map
Phone: 410-614-3659

Email me

Academic Affiliations & Courses

Courses and Syllabi

  • Applications of Innovative Methods in Health Equity Research (410.635.11)
    Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
  • Genes to Society (Cardiovascular Disease)
    JHU School of Medicine
  • Local and Global Best Practices in Health Equity Research Methods (410.606.81)
    Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
  • Healthcare Disparities TIME Course
    JHU School of Medicine

Activities & Honors


  • James D. Bruce Memorial Award for Distinguished Contributions to Preventive Medicine, ACP
  • George Engel Research Award, American Academy of Communication in Healthcare
  • Member, American Association of Physicians
  • Fellow, American College of Physicians (ACP)
  • Member, American Society for Clinical investigation 
  • Member, Delta Omega Honorary Society in Public Health 
  • Distinguished Alumni Award, Emory College
  • Fellow, John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation 
  • Gilman Scholar, Johns Hopkins University
  • James F. Fries Professorship in Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
  • Member, National Academy of Science 
  • Herbert W. Nickens Award for outstanding contributions to promoting justice in medical education and health care equity in the United States, Association of American Medical Colleges
  • 100 “History Makers in the Making" by MSNBC's
  • Bloomberg Distinguished Professor, Johns Hopkins University
  • Provost's Inaugural Award for Excellence in Faculty Mentoring, Johns Hopkins University
  • Provost's Inaugural Prize for Excellence in Diversity, Johns Hopkins University
  • Diplomate, American Board of Internal Medicine, 1991
  • Helen Rodriguez-Trias Social Justice Award, American Public Health Association
  • Distinguished Alumnae Award, University of North Carolina School of Medicine


  • American College of Physicians
  • Society of General Internal Medicine

Professional Activities

  • Harold Amos Medical Faculty Development Program Scholar, The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
  • Fellow, Picker/Commonwealth Scholars Program in Patient-Centered Care Research, The Commonwealth Fund

Videos & Media

Recent News Articles and Media Coverage

Criminals Are Liking the Commodities Boom, Bloomberg Radio Podcast (June 17, 2021)

Johns Hopkins' Dr. Lisa Cooper on Vaccines, Bloomberg TV News (June 15th, 2021)

BBC World News with Dr. Lisa Cooper 2021, (Jun 21, 2021)

As vaccinations begin, mistrust is a major hurdle in some communities, MSNBC Breaking News with Stephanie Ruhle (December 14, 2020)

With Universal Eligibility, A Fifth of Seniors Remain Unvaccinated, The New York Times (April 19, 2021)

Least Vaccinated Counties Have Something in Common, The New York Times (April 17, 2021)

Why Everyone Should Care About Health Disparities and What to Do About Them. American Heart Association News (June 10, 2021)

CNN Newsroom with Brianna Keilar, March 23, 2020

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