Wagahta Semere, MD, MHS

HS Assistant Clinical Prof

Wagahta Semere MD, MHS is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at UCSF in the Division of General Internal Medicine and a primary care provider in the Richard H. Fine People’s Clinic at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital. She is trained in health services research, applying quantitative, qualitative, and community based participatory research methods to examine disparities in health and health outcomes for vulnerable populations. She is experienced in clinical care and research with diverse immigrant and refugee communities. Her current work focuses on examining communication between culturally and linguistically diverse aging patients, their caregivers and providers. She is PI for an NIH/NLM mentored Administrative Supplement analyzing >400,000 secure messages exchanged over an online portal between >9,000 ethnically diverse diabetes patients with limited health literacy and their providers. Through the application of natural language processing, she has worked with computational linguists to identify caregivers’ “hidden proxy” communication on behalf of patients and characterize a socially and medically vulnerable group of patients who rely on proxies. Her work is also supported through the Center for Aging in Diverse Communities Scientist Program and the John A. Watson Faculty Scholars Program.
MHS, 2016 - Health Services Research, RWJF Clinical Scholars Program
Chief Residency, 2014 - Internal Medicine, Yale New Haven Hospital
Residency, 2013 - Internal Medicine, Yale New Haven Hospital
MD, 2010 - Medicine, University of Michigan Medical School
BSE, 2005 - Biomechanical Engineering, Stanford University
Honors and Awards
  • John A. Watson Faculty Scholar, UCSF, 2017
  • Gold Humanism Society, Yale, 2013
  1. Casillas A, Cemballi AG, Abhat A, Lemberg M, Portz JD, Sadasivaiah S, Ratanawongsa N, Semere W, Brown A, Lyles CR. An Untapped Potential in Primary Care: Semi-Structured Interviews with Clinicians on How Patient Portals Will Work for Caregivers in the Safety Net. 2020. PMID: 32706709

  2. Semere W, Crossley S, Karter AJ, Lyles CR, Brown W, Reed M, McNamara DS, Liu JY, Schillinger D. Secure Messaging with Physicians by Proxies for Patients with Diabetes: Findings from the ECLIPPSE Study. 2019. PMID: 31428986

  3. Semere W, Nápoles AM, Gregorich S, Livaudais-Toman J, Karliner L. Caregiving for Older Adults with Limited English Proficiency: Transitioning from Hospital to Home. Volume 34 of Issue 9. 2019. PMID: 31236893

  4. Semere W, Agrawal P, Yun K, Di Bartolo I, Annamalai A, Ross JS. Factors Associated with Refugee Acute Healthcare Utilization in Southern Connecticut. Volume 20 of Issue 2. 2018. PMID: 28382427

  5. Semere W, Yun K, Ahalt C, Williams B, Wang EA. Challenges in Identifying Refugees in National Health Data Sets. 2016. PMID: 27196649

  6. Semere W, Karamanoukian HL, Levitt M, Edwards T, Murero M, D'Ancona G, Donias HW, Glick PL. A pediatric surgery study: parent usage of the Internet for medical information. Volume 38 of Issue 4. 2003. PMID: 12677566

  7. Semere WG, Edwards TM, Boyd D, Barsoumian R, Murero M, Donias HW, Karamanoukian HL. The world wide web and robotic heart surgery. Volume 6 of Issue 6. 2003. PMID: 14721995