Scott Ratzan


Scott Ratzan has made major contributions to improve public health. Pioneer in health literacy and mobile health communication. Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Health Communication: International Perspectives. Member: Board of Scientific Counsellors, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Office of Infectious Disease; RAND Health Advisory Board; Massachusetts General Hospital Center for Global Health Advisory Board. Vice-Chair, health, Business Industry Advisory Committee to the OECD. Adjunct Professor, Columbia Univ. Mailman School of Public Health. Appointments at Tufts Univ. School of Medicine and George Washington Univ. School of Public Health and Health Services.


Tufts web page:

Phone:  609.917.4281



Dr. Scott C. Ratzan is Vice President, Global Health, Johnson & Johnson. In this role, he is charged with promoting communication, innovation and programs that focus on health literacy and public health policy. He is a pioneer in the areas of health literacy and mHealth communication, having co-authored the definition that serves as the basis for U.S. health literacy efforts.

Additionally, Dr. Ratzan is the Editor-in-Chief of the peer-reviewed Journal of Health Communication: International Perspectives.  He also serves as co-chair of the United Nations Secretary General’s Every Woman Every Child Innovation Working Group and serves on the Board of Scientific Counselors, Office of Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  He is a member of the U.S. Institute of Medicine (IOM) Roundtable on Health Literacy, serves on the World Economic Forum Global Agenda Council on Well-Being and Mental Health, and is a former Ambassador for global health research selected by Research!America.

He advocates for better health in multiple ways. In 2011, he presented the industry’s “Framework for Action for the Prevention and Control of Non-Communicable Diseases” at the UN General Assembly interactive hearing.  In 2010, he was invited to testify before the US Congressional Committee on “Achieving the United Nations Millennium Development Goals: Progress through Partnerships.”    And recently, he presented at the Harvard Kennedy School Women and Public Policy Board on Global Health Diplomacy.

Dr. Ratzan joined Johnson & Johnson in 2002 as Vice President, Government Affairs-Europe, based in Brussels with responsibility for Government Affairs and Policy issues related to pharmaceuticals in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region as well as in global health initiatives such as HIV.  Prior to joining Johnson & Johnson, he was Senior Technical Adviser in the Bureau of Global Health at the United States Agency for International Development, (USAID), where he developed the global health communication strategy for U.S. funded efforts in 65 countries.

Dr. Ratzan maintains faculty appointments at the Columbia Mailman School of Public Health, Tufts University School of Medicine and George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services.  Previously, he has been on faculty at the Yale School of Medicine, the University of Cambridge Judge Business School and the College of Europe.

Dr. Ratzan has appeared on Good Morning America and Nightline as well as published articles in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Financial Times and in academic journals. His books include the Mad Cow Crisis: Health and the Public Good, Attaining Global Health: Challenges and Opportunities, and AIDS: Effective Health Communication for the 90s. He also has delivered many presentations including the Leiter lecture on Quality Health Communication for the National Library of Medicine and an address on risk communication for the National Cancer Institute that was selected in Vital Speeches of the Day.  Dr. Ratzan also has drafted “Maxims for Effective Communication on Health and Risk Issues” that was published as part of a World Health Organization Consultation in 1998.


Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California
Doctor of Medicine (MD)

Harvard University Kennedy School of Government
Master of Public Administration (MPA) Field Of Study Government
1985 – 1987

Emerson College
Degree Name Master of Arts (M.A.) Field Of Study Communication
Dates attended or expected graduation 1985 – 1986

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