Elizabeth Sommers, PhD

Assistant Professor, Family Medicine

Elizabeth Sommers


Elizabeth Sommers PhD MPH LicAc is Senior Acupuncturist and Researcher in the Integrative Medicine and Health Disparities Program of Boston Medical Center. At Boston University School of Medicine, she is an Assistant Professor of Family Medicine. She holds degrees from Boston University School of Public Health and New England School of Acupuncture. She coordinates an acupuncture clinic at Tufts Medical Center that provides free care for individuals living with HIV/AIDS.

As an acupuncture researcher, she has published and lectured internationally in the areas of acupuncture detoxification related to substance use disorder, health economics, and treatment of individuals diagnosed with HIV/AIDS. Her book “Acupuncture as an Adjuvant in the Treatment of HIV/AIDS” was published in 2014. Dr. Sommers is a member of the editorial board of the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine. She co-edited the special public health issue of the European Journal of Integrative Medicine (2013) and also co-edited a 2018 special issue of Medicines on acupuncture and cancer care.

As a co-editor of the book Public Health and Health Services Research In Traditional, Complementary And Integrative Health Care: International Perspectives (2019) she co-wrote the chapter entitled “Health Disparities and Traditional, Complementary and Integrative Medicine Use: Reflections from a Social Justice Perspective”. She is co-edited a special issue on global public health for the Journal of Integrative and Complementary Medicine published June/July 2023.

She co-founded the American Public Health Association’s Section on Integrative, Complementary and Traditional Health Practices, and currently serves as co-chair of APHA’s Intersectional Council Opioid Workgroup. A public health advocate, Dr. Sommers is committed to ensuring that healthcare including wellness is a right not a privilege. She tweets #PublicHealthHaiku and has been informally named the Poet Laureate of Public Health by APHA President-Elect Chris Chanyasulkit.


  • Boston University School of Public Health, PhD
  • Boston University School of Public Health, MPH
  • University of Wisconsin Madison, BS


  • Published on 4/24/2023

    Hughes GD, Sommers E, Steel A. The Changing Global Public Health Landscape of Traditional, Complementary, and Integrative Medicine in Primary Care: Responding to the Vision of the Declaration of Astana. J Integr Complement Med. 2023; 29(6-7):335-336. PMID: 37092968.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 3/14/2022

    Sommers E, D'Amico S, Goldstein L, Gardiner P. Integrative Approaches to Pediatric Chronic Pain in an Urban Safety-Net Hospital: Cost Savings, Clinical Benefits, and Safety. J Integr Complement Med. 2022 May; 28(5):445-453. PMID: 35285677.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 8/24/2021

    Sommers E, Vinjamury SP, Noborikawa J. Pain and Opioid Use: Evidence for Integrating Acupuncture Into Treatment Planning. Global Advances in Health and Medicine. 2021.

    Read at: Custom
  • Published on 8/24/2021

    Sommers E, Vinjamury SP, Noborikawa J. Pain and Opioid Use: Evidence for Integrating Acupuncture Into Treatment Planning. Glob Adv Health Med. 2021; 10:21649561211042571. PMID: 34458014.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 5/4/2018

    Bodner K, D'Amico S, Luo M, Sommers E, Goldstein L, Neri C, Gardiner P. A cross-sectional review of the prevalence of integrative medicine in pediatric pain clinics across the United States. Complement Ther Med. 2018 Jun; 38:79-84. PMID: 29857885.

    Read at: PubMed

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