Headshot photo of Cliff Coleman, M.D., M.P.H.

Cliff Coleman, M.D., M.P.H.

  • Associate Professor of Family Medicine, School of Medicine
  • Clinical Thread Director for Professionalism, Ethics, and Communication, Office of the Dean, School of Medicine
  • Doris and Mark Storms Chair in Compassionate Communication, Center for Ethics
  • Center for Ethics in Health Care, School of Medicine


Dr. Cliff Coleman is a family doctor who specializes in caring for patients with complex medical conditions as well as meeting the growing health needs of underserved populations. He says his patients, their families and his coworkers make him feel privileged to come to work each day.

A national expert whose research focuses in the fields of health literacy and doctor-patient communication, Dr. Coleman also provides training for health care professionals and medical students in these areas. Other topics include culturally responsive care, professionalism and ethics.

Dr. Coleman grew up in Eugene, Oregon. He lives in Portland with his wife, two children and their family dog. In his spare time, he enjoys skiing, traveling, hiking and the arts.

Education and training

    • A.B., 1991, Dartmouth College
    • M.D., 2000, Stanford University
    • M.P.H., 2004, Portland State University
  • Residency

    • Family Medicine residency - OHSU - 2000-2003
    • Public Health & Preventive Medicine residency - OHSU - 2000-2004
  • Certifications

    • Family Medicine

Memberships and associations:

  • Advanced Cardiac Life Support

Areas of interest

  • Health literacy, health communication, culturally responsive care, medical education, underrepresented minority physicians


Elsevier pure profile

Selected publications

  • Coleman CA, Nguyen NT, Garvin R, Sou C, Carney PA. Health Literacy Teaching in U.S. Family Medicine Residency Programs: A National Survey. Journal of Health Communication 2016;21(Suppl1):51-57
  • Coleman C, Peterson-Perry S, Bumsted T. Long-term Effects of a Health Literacy Curriculum for Medical Students. Family Medicine 2016;48(1):49-53
  • Coleman C, Fromer A. A Health Literacy Training Intervention for Physicians and Other Health Professionals. Family Medicine, 2015;47(5):388-92
  • Coleman C, Hudson S, Maine L. Health Literacy Practices and Educational Competencies for Health Professionals: A Consensus Study. Journal of Health Communication 2013;18:82-102
  • Lie D, Carter-Pokras O, Braun B, Coleman C. What Do Health Literacy and Cultural Competence Have in Common? Calling for a Collaborative Health Professional Pedagogy. Journal of Health Communication, 2012;17:13-22
  • Coleman CA, Appy S. Health Literacy Teaching in U.S. Medical Schools, 2010. Family Medicine, 2012;44(7):504-7
  • Coleman CA. Teaching Healthcare Professionals about Health Literacy: A Review of the Literature. Nursing Outlook 2011;59:70-8


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