Christina Nicolaidis, M.D., M.P.H.

Christina Nicolaidis, MD, MPHChristina Nicolaidis, M.D., M.P.H.
Professor and Senior Scholar in Social Determinants of Health
PSU, School of Social Work
Adjunct Associate Professor of Medicine and Public Health
OHSU, Division of General Internal Medicine and Geriatrics

Education and Training

A.B., Cognitive Science, Brown University, 1988

Medical Degree:
M.D., Columbia University, 1993

Internal Medicine, Oregon Health & Science University, 1993-1996
Chief Residency, Internal Medicine, Oregon Health & Science University, 1996-1997

Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program, University of Washington, 1997-1999

Master's Degree:
M.P.H., Epidemiology, University of Washington, 1999


Dr. Nicolaidis has focused most of her career on improving the health and healthcare of populations that have traditionally not been well-served in the healthcare system, including racial and ethnic minorities, domestic violence survivors, adults on the autism spectrum, and people with developmental disabilities. She most often uses a community-based participatory research (CBPR) approach, where community members serve as equal partner on the research team. She has led research projects funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Center for Disease Control (CDC), and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) to address a variety of issues including interpersonal violence, depression, chronic pain, patient-centered communication, health disparities, and primary care services. Dr. Nicolaidis co-directs the Academic Autism Spectrum Partnership in Research and Education (AASPIRE) and serves as a standing member of an NIH Mental Health Services study section. Dr. Nicolaidis is currently leading the Social Determinants of Health Initiative at Portland State University. She also teaches and practices Internal Medicine, supervising residents and students in both the inpatient and outpatient setting.

Board Certification

American Board of Internal Medicine, 1996, 2006

Research Interests

  • Content expertise: intimate partner violence, depression, chronic pain, primary care and mental health services, health disparities, women’s health, chronic illness management, autism spectrum disorders.
  • Populations of interest: adults on the autism spectrum, African-Americans, Latinos, people with disabilities, primary care patients, violence survivors.
  • Methodological expertise: Community Based Participatory Research (CBPR), survey development and adaptation, mixed methods (qualitative and quantitative), and evidence based medicine.

Clinical Interests

Inpatient and outpatient internal medicine, chronic pain, depression, intimate partner violence.

Educational Activities

Director, the Voices of Survivors: Domestic Violence Survivors Educate Physicians
This educational documentary uses patient narratives to teach healthcare providers about intimate partner violence from the perspective of their patients. You can view it online or order a free DVD from Futures Without Violence.

Scholarship Activities

Selected Research Projects

  • Partnering with Autistic Adults to Develop Tools to Improve Primary Healthcare.
    Funding Agency:National Institute of Mental Health.1R34MH092503-01. Role: Principal Investigator.
    This project, conducted by the Academic Autistic Spectrum Partnership in Research and Education uses a CBPR approach to develop patient-centered care tools to improve the primary healthcare of adults on the autism spectrum
  • Partnering with People with Developmental Disabilities to Address Interpersonal Violence.
    Funding agency:Centers for Disease Control / Association of University Centers on Disabilities.RTOI. PI: Hughes; Role:Co-Principal Investigator.
    This study uses a CBPR approach to assess the association between interpersonal violence, disability, and health in an urban and a rural population of adults with developmental disabilities
  • Community-Based Wellness Program to Reduce Depression in African-Americans.
    Funding Agency: Oregon Clinical and Translational Research Institute (NIH CTSA); Role: Academic Principal Investigator (Community PI: Corliss McKeever).
    This project pilot-tests a community-based psycho-educational intervention, based on the Chronic Illness Management Model, to increase physical activity and reduce depression in African-Americans
  • VISN 20 Patient-Aligned Care Teams Demonstration Lab.
    Funding Agency: Veterans Administration. VA#08-1610
    PI: Hickam. Role: Co-Investigator.
    This demonstration project aims to transform how primary care is delivered in the Veterans Administration clinics in the Pacific Northwest
  • The Interconnections Project.
    Funding agencies:National Institute of Mental Health (R21MH082139-01 and K23MH073008) and Northwest Health Foundation Kaiser Community Fund.
    Role: Principal Investigator.
    This community-based participatory research project developed and evaluated a depression care program for African-American and Latina domestic violence survivors
  • The Voices of Survivors Project.
    Funding agencies:Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Northwest Health Foundation.
    Role:Principal Investigator.
    This community-engaged project used qualitative interviews with domestic violence survivors to create an educational documentary for healthcare providers.  Evaluation of the program in over 30 primary care clinics found significant increases in providers' knowledge, skills, sense of responsibility, and empathy

Selected Research Product

Please contact for permission to use these products in other research studies

Selected Publications

(selected from over 45 publications)

  1. Skaperdas, E., Tuepker, A., Nicolaidis, C., Robb, J.K., Kansagara, D., Hickam, D. System-related barriers and everyday challenges to congestive heart failure self-management: a qualitative analysis. Patient Education and Counseling. 2014. Available online March 13, 2014.
  2. Zuckerman, K., Sinche, B., Mejia A., Cobian, M., Becker, T., Nicolaidis, C. Latino Parents' Perspectives of Barriers to Autism Diagnosis. Academic Pediatrics. In press
  3. Tuepker, A., Kansagara, D., Skaperdas, E., Nicolaidis, C., Joos, S., Alperin, M., Hickam, D. "We've not gotten even close to what we want to do": a qualitative study of PACT implementation. Journal of General Internal Medicine, In press
  4. Kansagara, D., Tuepker, A., Joos, S., Nicolaidis, C., Skaperdas, E., Hickam, D. Getting performance metrics right: a qualitative study of staff experiences implementing and measuring practice transformation. In press. Published online Feb 21. 2014.
  5. Oschwald, M, Leotti, S., Raymaker, D, Katz, M, Goe, R, Harviston, M., Wallington, A., Howard, L., Beers, L., Nicolaidis, C., Robinson-Whelen, S., Hughes, R.B., Powers, LE, and the Partnering with People with Disabilities to Address Violence Consortium. Development of an Audio-Computer Assisted Self-Interview to Investigate Violence and Health in the Lives of People with Developmental Disabilities. Disability and Health Journal (2014). In press. Available online January 25, 2014
  6. Raymaker, D, Nicolaidis, C.  Participatory research with autistic communities: Shifting the system. In Orsini, M., Davidson, J. (eds). Critical Autism Studies: Enabling Inclusion, Defending Difference (ch.7). 2013. University of Minnesota Press. Pp. 169-188
  7. Weimer, MB, Macey, TA, Nicolaidis, C., Dobscha, SK, Duckart, JP, Morasco, BJ. Sex differences in the medical care of VA patients with chronic non-cancer pain. Pain Medicine. 2013; 14: 1839-1847
  8. Nicolaidis, C., Mejia, A., Perez, M., Alvarado, A., Celaya-Alston, R., Quintero, Y., Aquillin, R. Proyecto Interconexiones: pilot-test of a community-based depression care program for Latina violence survivors. Progress in Community Health Partnerships: Research, Education, and Action, 2013; 7(4) 395-401.
  9. Nicolaidis, C., McKeever, C., Meucci, S. A Community-Based Wellness Program to Reduce Depression in African-Americans: results from a pilot-intervention. Progress in Community Health Partnerships: Research, Education, and Action, 2013: 7(2)145-152.
  10. Nicolaidis, C., Raymaker, D., McDonald, K, Dern, S., Boisclair, W.C., Ashkenazy, E., Baggs, A. Comparison of healthcare experiences in autistic and non-autistic adults: A cross-sectional online survey facilitated by an academic-community partnership.  Journal of General Internal Medicine. 2013:28(6):761-9.  
  11. Nicolaidis, C., Wahab, S., Trimble, J., Mejia, A, Mitchell, S.R., Raymaker, D., Thomas, M.J., Trimble, V., Waters, A.S. The Interconnections Project: development and evaluation of a community-based depression program for African-American violence survivors.  Journal of General Internal Medicine. 2013:28(4);530-538.
  12. Wahab, S., Trimble, J., Mejia, A., Mitchell, S.R., Thomas, M.J., Timmons, W., Waters, A.S., Raymaker, D., Nicolaidis, C. Motivational Interviewing at the Intersection of depression and intimate partner violence among African American women. Journal of Evidence Based Social Work, in press.
  13. Davis, M.M., Devoe, M, Kansagara, D, Nicolaidis, C, Englander, E. "Did I do as best as the system would let me?" Healthcare Professional Views on Hospital to Home Care Transitions. Journal of General Internal Medicine, 2012 Dec;27(12):1649-56
  14. Ray, M.K., Beech, M.C. Nicolaidis, C., Choi, D., Saha, S., Cohn, J.A., Sharp, V.L., Korthuis, P.T. "Patient and provider comfort discussing substance abuse". Family Medicine, 2013:45(2);109-17
  15. Nicolaidis, C. What Can Physicians Learn From the Neurodiversity Movement? Virtual Mentor: American Medical Association Journal of Ethics.2012. 14(6): 503-510.
  16. Choo, E., Nicolaidis, C, Hall, M.K., Newgard, C., Lowe, R.A., McConnell, K.J."The Association Between Emergency Department Resources and Diagnosis of Intimate Partner Violence." European Journal of Emergency Medicine.2012. 19(2)83-8. (PMID 22391615)
  17. Nicolaidis, C "Violence and Poor Mental Health and Functional Outcomes." BMJ 2011;343:bmj.d7311. (PMID:22094318)
  18. Nicolaidis, ., Raymaker, D., McDonald, K, Dern, S., Ashkenazy, E., Boisclair, W.C., Robertson, S, Baggs, A."Collaboration strategies in non-traditional CBPR partnerships: Lessons from an academic-community partnership with autistic self-advocates."Progress in Community Health Partnerships: Research, Education, and Action." 2011:5(2);143-150. (PMID:21623016)
  19. Nicolaidis, C., Perez, M., Mejia, A., Alvarado, A., Celaya-Alston, R., Galian, H,, Hilde, A."'Guardarse las cosas adentro' (keeping things inside): Latina violence survivors' perceptions of depression."Journal of General Internal Medicine.2011:26(10):1131–7. (PMID: 21626052)
  20. Nicolaidis, C. Chienello, T., Gerrity, M."Development and Preliminary Psychometric Testing of the Centrality of Pain Scale." Pain Medicine. 2011;12:612-617. (PMID:21392248)
  21. Nicolaidis, C., "Police Officer, Deal-Maker, or Healthcare Provider? Moving to a Patient-Centered Framework for Chronic Opioid Management."Pain Medicine.2011.12: 890–897. (PMID:21539703)
  22. Nicolaidis, C. Timmons, V., Thomas, M.J., Waters, A.S., Wahab, S., Mejia, A., Mitchell, S.R."'You don't go tell white people nothing':African-American women discuss the influence of violence and race on depression and depression care."American Journal of Public Health. 2010:100(8):1470-6. (PMID: 20558811)
  23. Choo, E, Nicolaidis, C., Jenkinson, R.H., Cox, J.M., McConnell, K.J."Failure of Intimate Partner Violence Screening Among Patients with Substance Use Disorders." Academic Emergency Medicine, 2010(17):1–4. (PMID:20670328)
  24. Korthuis, P.T., Gregg, J, Rogers, W.E., McCarthy, D., Nicolaidis, C., Boverman, J."Patients' Reasons for Choosing Office-based Buprenorphine:Preference for Patient-Centered Care."Journal of Addiction Medicine. 2010;4(4):204-210. (PMID:21170143)
  25. Alford, D.P, Krebs, E.E., Chen, I.A, Nicolaidis, C., Bair, M.J., Liebschutz, J. "Update in Pain Medicine." Journal of General Internal Medicine 2010(11):1222-6. (PMID:20632120)
  26. Fisher, JW, Weil, A., Nicolaidis, C. Addressing Intimate Partner Violence in Clinical Settings.  Practical Gynecology: A Guide for the Primary Care Physician. 2009. American College of Physicians, Philadelphia, PA.Pp. 487-506
  27. Nicolaidis, C., McFarland, B., Curry, M.A., Gerrity, M."Differences in physical and mental health symptoms and mental health utilization associated with intimate partner violence vs. child abuse."Psychosomatic.2009:50(4)340-346. (PMID19687174)
  28. Nicolaidis, C., Liebshutz, J."Chronic Physical Symptoms In Survivors of Violence."C. Mitchell, D. Anglin (eds.), Intimate Partner Violence:A Bio-Psycho-Social Approach 2009.Oxford University Press. Pages 19-29
  29. Nicolaidis, C., Paranjape, A."Defining Intimate Partner Violence:Controversies and Implications."C. Mitchell, D. Anglin (eds.), Intimate Partner Violence:A Bio-Psycho-Social Approach 2009.Oxford University Press. Pages 133-145
  30. Nicolaidis, C., Gregg, J., Galian, H., Curry, MA, McFarland, B., Gerrity, M."You always end up feeling like you're some hypochondriac": Intimate partner violence survivors' experiences addressing depression and pain. Journal of General Internal Medicine 2008;23(8)1157-63. (PMID 18443884)
  31. Nicolaidis, C "My Mother's Choice." JAMA 2006;296(8): 907-8. (PMID:16926344)
  32. Nelson, H., Fu, R., Haney, E.M., Humphrey, L., Miller, J., Nedrow, A., Nicolaidis, C., Vesco, K., Walker, M."Nonhormonal Therapies for Menopausal Hot Flashes: Systematic Review and Meta-analysis."JAMA. 2006;295:2057-2071 (PMID:1667041)
  33. Nicolaidis, C.,Touhouliotis, V."Addressing intimate partner violence in primary care:lessons from chronic illness management".Violence and Victims. 2006;21(1)101-116. (PMID:16494136)
  34. Nicolaidis, C., Curry M.A., Gerrity M. Measuring the impact of the Voices of Survivor program on healthcare workers' attitudes towards survivors of intimate partner violence.  Journal of General Internal Medicine. 2005;20:731-737.(PMID: 16050883)
  35. Nicolaidis, C., Curry, M.A., Gerrity, M."Health care workers' expectations of & empathy toward patients in abusive relationships Journal of the American Board of Family Practice. 2005; 18:159-65. (PMID: 15879562)
  36. Nicolaidis, C. “Intimate Partner Violence: a practical guide for primary care clinicians.” Women’s Health In Primary Care, 2004; 7(7): 349-362.
  37. Nicolaidis, C., Ko. C.W., Saha, S., Koepsell, T. “Racial discrepancies in the association between paternal vs. maternal educational level and risk of low birth weight in Washington State.” BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth, 2004; 4:10. (PMID: 15202949)
  38. Nicolaidis C., Curry M.A., Gerrity M., McFarland B. Violence, Mental Health and Physical Symptoms in an Academic Internal Medicine Practice. Journal of General Internal Medicine. 2004;19:815-823. (PMID: 15242466)
  39. Nicolaidis, C., Curry, M.A., Urlich, Y., Sharps, P., McFarlane, J., Campbell, D., Gary, F., Laughon, K., Glass, N., Campbell, J. “Could we have known? A qualitative analysis of data from women who survived an attempted homicide by an intimate partner.” Journal of General Internal Medicine, 2003; 18(10): 788-794. (PMID:14521640)
  40. Nicolaidis, C. “The Voices of Survivors documentary: Using patient narrative to educate physicians about domestic violence.” Journal of General Internal Medicine. 2002; 17:117-124. (PMID:11841527)
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