Nynikka Palmer, DrPH, MPH

Assistant Professor in Res
Medicine

Dr. Nynikka Palmer received her undergraduate training from Morgan State University, where she obtained a degree in health education with honors. She then earned a master’s degree in public health from Emory University’s Rollins School of Public Health and subsequently worked for 3 years at the American Cancer Society in Atlanta, Georgia collaborating with community organizations on cancer education and early detection in minority and underserved communities. Dr. Palmer then earned a doctorate in public health, in behavioral sciences and health promotion from the University of Texas, School of Public Health in Houston. During her doctoral program, she was a pre-doctoral fellow in an NCI-sponsored cancer prevention and control training program. She extended her training in cancer with a focus on cancer survivorship and health disparities as a postdoctoral fellow on an NCI-sponsored training award at Wake Forest School of Medicine. Dr. Palmer was recruited to join the faculty at UCSF in 2013 to further establish her research in cancer health disparities. Currently, she is an Assistant Professor, with a primary appointment in the Division of General Internal Medicine at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center (ZSFGH) and secondary appointments in Urology and Radiation Oncology. Dr. Palmer is also an Associate member of the UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center and an Associate Faculty member of the Center for Vulnerable Populations at ZSFGH.

Dr. Palmer’s research is grounded in cancer disparities and has progressed over the years to focus on racial/ethnic and geographic disparities (e.g., rural/urban) in cancer, challenges faced by male cancer survivors, prostate cancer in African American men, and quality cancer care. During her postdoctoral fellowship, she examined racial/ethnic disparities in health care receipt among male cancer survivors, rural/urban disparities in cancer survivors forgoing care because of cost, and racial/ethnic disparities in patient-provider communication, quality of care ratings, and patient activation among long-term cancer survivors. Dr. Palmer is particularly interested in prostate cancer among African American men, and has examined African American prostate cancer survivors’ treatment decision-making and their subsequent quality of life. Findings from these studies have directed her research agenda to further understand and examine quality of care and patient-provider communication among African American men with prostate cancer, particularly in low-income communities. Dr. Palmer’s long-term goal is to move beyond identifying cancer disparities to developing, implementing, and disseminating interventions and programs that will ultimately reduce the burden of cancer among vulnerable populations.

Publications: 

Rural cancer survivors' health information needs post-treatment.

Patient education and counseling

Palmer NR, Avis NE, Fino NF, Tooze JA, Weaver KE

Minority Recruitment Trends in Phase III Prostate Cancer Clinical Trials (2003 to 2014): Progress and Critical Areas for Improvement.

The Journal of urology

Balakrishnan AS, Palmer NR, Fergus KB, Gaither TW, Baradaran N, Ndoye M, Breyer BN

A bilingual, Internet-based, targeted advertising campaign for prostate cancer clinical trials: Assessing the feasibility, acceptability, and efficacy of a novel recruitment strategy.

Contemporary clinical trials communications

Kaplan CP, Siegel A, Leykin Y, Palmer NR, Borno H, Bielenberg J, Livaudais-Toman J, Ryan C, Small EJ

Racial and Ethnic Differences in Prostate Cancer Survivors' Perceived Engagement in Treatment Decision-Making.

Journal of racial and ethnic health disparities

Palmer NR, Gregorich SE, Livaudais-Toman J, Jih J, Kaplan CP

The San Francisco Cancer Initiative: A Community Effort To Reduce The Population Burden Of Cancer.

Health affairs (Project Hope)

Hiatt RA, Sibley A, Fejerman L, Glantz S, Nguyen T, Pasick R, Palmer N, Perkins A, Potter MB, Somsouk M, Vargas RA, van 't Veer LJ, Ashworth A

Family history of prostate and colorectal cancer and risk of colorectal cancer in the Women's health initiative.

BMC cancer

Beebe-Dimmer JL, Yee C, Paskett E, Schwartz AG, Lane D, Palmer NRA, Bock CH, Nassir R, Simon MS

Outcomes of men on active surveillance for low-risk prostate cancer at a safety-net hospital.

Urologic oncology

Osterberg EC, Palmer NRA, Harris CR, Murphy GP, Blaschko SD, Chu C, Allen IE, Cooperberg MR, Carroll PR, Breyer BN

Disparities in barriers to follow-up care between African American and White breast cancer survivors.

Supportive care in cancer : official journal of the Multinational Association of Supportive Care in Cancer

Palmer NR, Weaver KE, Hauser SP, Lawrence JA, Talton J, Case LD, Geiger AM

Familial clustering of breast and prostate cancer and risk of postmenopausal breast cancer in the Women's Health Initiative Study.

Cancer

Beebe-Dimmer JL, Yee C, Cote ML, Petrucelli N, Palmer N, Bock C, Lane D, Agalliu I, Stefanick ML, Simon MS

Racial and ethnic disparities in patient-provider communication, quality-of-care ratings, and patient activation among long-term cancer survivors.

Journal of clinical oncology : official journal of the American Society of Clinical Oncology

Palmer NR, Kent EE, Forsythe LP, Arora NK, Rowland JH, Aziz NM, Blanch-Hartigan D, Oakley-Girvan I, Hamilton AS, Weaver KE

Impact of rural residence on forgoing healthcare after cancer because of cost.

Cancer epidemiology, biomarkers & prevention : a publication of the American Association for Cancer Research, cosponsored by the American Society of Preventive Oncology

Palmer NR, Geiger AM, Lu L, Case LD, Weaver KE

Racial/Ethnic disparities in health care receipt among male cancer survivors.

American journal of public health

Palmer NR, Geiger AM, Felder TM, Lu L, Case LD, Weaver KE

Rural-urban differences in health behaviors and implications for health status among US cancer survivors.

Cancer causes & control : CCC

Weaver KE, Palmer N, Lu L, Case LD, Geiger AM

Transitioning from active treatment: colorectal cancer survivors' health promotion goals.

Palliative & supportive care

Palmer NR, Bartholomew LK, McCurdy SA, Basen-Engquist KM, Naik AD

African American prostate cancer survivors' treatment decision-making and quality of life.

Patient education and counseling

Palmer NR, Tooze JA, Turner AR, Xu J, Avis NE

Comparative effectiveness of goal setting in diabetes mellitus group clinics: randomized clinical trial.

Archives of internal medicine

Naik AD, Palmer N, Petersen NJ, Street RL, Rao R, Suarez-Almazor M, Haidet P

What is the evidence for pharmaceutical patient assistance programs? A systematic review.

Journal of health care for the poor and underserved

Felder TM, Palmer NR, Lal LS, Mullen PD