About Our Research Programs

Our research spans from basic science issues to social science issues. In the area of elder abuse, we’re trying to understand why it occurs, how to identify and intervene at an early stage, and what to do to prevent it. Ranked No. 9 in NIH funding, the Department of Family Medicine conducts crucial research in the living laboratories of Los Angeles, in our clinics and our community. We perform studies that make a difference in the lives of our patients, with a focus on wellness and social justice. Our research in areas such as rural and urban health systems, geriatrics and integrative medicine has garnered numerous competitive grants from federal, state and private funding sources. Faculty members frequently collaborate across disciplines at USC and with local agencies and organizations to further the mission of caring for the diverse families of Los Angeles.

Current Research


As the number of older adults continues to grow in California, the Department of Family Medicine is one of the leaders in training primary care providers in quality care for geriatric patients. With an award of $3.75 million from the Health Resources and Services Administration, they are addressing the health and wellness needs of culturally diverse and low-income older adults living in Los Angeles

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Featured Publication

“Financial and Health Literacy Discrepancies With Cognition in Older Adults” by Duke Han, PhD, and Gali Weissberger, PhD

Greater financial and health literacy are associated with better cognition. However, research suggests that some individuals exhibit differences or discrepancies in these abilities in their senior years. Researchers at USC investigated these discrepancies between literacy and cognition, along with the factors that are associated with such differences in older adults without dementia.

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