Division of General Internal Medicine and Geriatrics
Feinberg School of Medicine
Namratha Kandula, MD, MPH is a practicing primary care physician and researcher with a long-standing commitment to improving health and healthcare for underserved and vulnerable communities. After completing her residency in Primary Care/Internal Medicine at New York University/Bellevue Hospital, she was a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholar at the University of Chicago and is now Assistant Professor of Medicine at Northwestern University.
Dr. Kandula’s expertise is in the social and cultural determinants of health and community-engaged health interventions. She co-led the development of an award-winning, multimedia diabetes self-management education program for patients with limited health literacy; the program was developed with extensive patient input and is used by several federally qualified health centers as part of a multifaceted program to improve care for patients with diabetes. Their research has shown that even the most well-designed, literacy-appropriate education materials do not lead to long-term retention of knowledge or patient activation. They are now testing the RITE (Retention, Integration, and Transfer to Everyday Self-Management) teaching strategy, developed using evidence from the cognitive sciences and with patient input, to promote long-term learning and activation after patients view the multimedia diabetes education program. Dr. Kandula also directs a federally-funded, multidisciplinary research program to implement cardiovascular disease prevention strategies in partnership with communities. Their goal is to improve health and well-being in populations that are disproportionately affected by social inequality.