Dr. Sanders is a national expert in the science of health literacy, which applies a literacy lens to advancing maternal and child health equity. He directs the Stanford Health Literacy Lab, which aims to address child disparities in health and educational, by redesigning primary-care with youth and families. Dr. Sanders was named a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Generalist Physician Faculty Scholar to lead the foundational science of health literacy as it applies to advancing maternal and child health equity. He has served as an advisor to the Institute of Medicine, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Food and Drug Administration, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Academic Pediatric Association, and the American Cancer Society. Dr. Sanders leads a multi-disciplinary research team that provides analytic guidance to regional, state and national policy makers. A focus of the work is applying health-services, human-centered design and health-behavior science to improve care for children with medical complexity (CMC). Dr. Sanders is PI on several federally funded studies, including RCTs of behavioral interventions. This includes founding the Greenllight Study Team, a long-standing, multi-site collaborative that aims to assess the efficacy of low-literacy, multi-modal interventions designed to prevent early childhood obesity. Another examines the efficacy of GoalKeeper, an AI-driven support for parent-provider coordination is CMC care. He is also PI on a health-literacy project to inform FDA guidance on medication information for adolescents with chronic illness, and co-PI on an HAI-funded initiative to measure and support parent-child interaction in early childhood. In partnership with the Graduate School of Education, Dr. Sanders also co-leads the Population Health in Schools (PHIS) Lab, which links health data with school data to address child health and educational disparities.
Dr. Sanders received a BA in History and Science from Harvard University, an MD from Stanford University, and a MPH from the University of California, Berkeley. Between 2006 and 2011, Dr. Sanders was on faculty at the University of Miami, where he was Medical Director of the Jay Weiss Center for Social Medicine and Health Equity, which fosters a scholarly community committed to addressing global health inequities through community-based participatory research. He also served as Medical Director of Children’s Medical Services South Florida, a Florida state agency that coordinates care for more than 10,000 low-income children with special health care needs, and as Medical Director for Reach Out and Read Florida, a pediatric-clinic-based program that provides books and early-literacy promotion to more than 200,000 underserved children. Since returning to Stanford University, Dr. Sanders has served as Division Chief for General Pediatrics, co-director of the Academic General Pediatrics Fellowship, and Co-director of the Family Advocacy Program, which provides free legal assistance to help address social determinants of child health.
Fluent in Spanish, Dr. Sanders is co-director of the Complex Primary Care Clinic at Stanford Children’s Health, which provides multi-disciplinary team care for children with complex chronic conditions. Dr. Sanders is also a father of two daughters, who make sure he practices talking less and listening more.