Barbara Elliott, PhD, MDiv

Professor Emerita, Department of Family Medicine and BioBehavioral Health

Barbara Elliott

Contact Info

PhD, University of Minnesota

MDiv, Episcopal Divinity School


Dr. Barbara Elliott is Professor Emerita in the Department of Family Medicine and BioBehavioral Health and an Affiliate Member of the University’s Center for Bioethics. She taught medical ethics, and actively investigated social justice issues in health care settings, specifically developing and testing programs to improve access to care. More recently, her research focused on spirituality and health at end of life. Professor Elliott has also served as a leader and consultant in hospital ethics programs.

Her work was honored with several awards and recognitions, including a Kellogg National Fellowship, President’s Award from the Minnesota Academy of Family Physicians, Stop the Violence Award from the Minnesota Medical Association, Chancellor’s Award for Distinguished Research, and the University's Outstanding Community Service Award.

Dr. Elliott is ordained in the Episcopal church and works as a hospital chaplain in the Essentia Health System, as well as serving as Assisting Priest at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church.



  • Elliott BA, Gessert CE, Peden-McAlpine C. Family Decision making for elders with advanced cognitive impairment: Spirituality and meaning. The Journal of Gerontological Nursing. 2007;33(8):49-55.
  • Elliott BA, Westra R. Reproductive health care in rural communities: Ethical considerations. In: Nelson W, ed. Handbook for Rural Health Care Ethics: A Practical Guide for Professionals. Hanover, NH: Dartmouth College; 2009.
  • Elliott BA, Gessert CE, Peden-McAlpine C. Family decision making in advanced dementia: Narrative and ethics. Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences, 2009; 23: 251-258.
  • Elliott BA, Dorscher JA, Wirta A, Hill DL. Success as Experienced by Native American Women who are Medical School Faculty. Academic Medicine. 2010; 85(4): 675-679.
  • Elliott, BA. Forgiveness Therapy: A Clinical Intervention for Chronic Disease. Journal of Religion and Health, 2011; 50(2):240-247.
  • Elliott BA, Gessert CE, Larson P, Russ T. Religious Beliefs and Practices in ESRD: Implications for Clinicians. Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, 2012;44(3):400-409; Epub 2012, July 3. 
  • Spoelhof, D., Elliott, BA. Implementing advance directives in office practice. American Family Physician. 2012;85(5):461-466.
  • Elliott BA, Gessert CE, Larson PM, Russ TE. Shifting responses in QoL: People living with dialysis. Quality of Life Research Journal. 2014;23(5):1497-504. Epub 2013 Dec 17.
  • Elliott BA, Gessert CE. Advance care planning among people living with dialysis. Healthcare, 2016, 4 (1): 17; doi:10.3390/healthcare4010017