Carolyn Sufrin, MD, PhD

Associate Professor

Carolyn Sufrin, MD, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and an obstetrician-gynecologist specializing in family planning at Johns Hopkins University, where she is associate professor in the Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics and associate director of the Center for Medical Humanities and Social Medicine at the School of Medicine; she also holds an appointment in Health, Behavior and Society at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She has worked extensively on reproductive health issues affecting incarcerated women, from providing clinical care in jail, to research, policy, and advocacy. Her work is situated at the intersection of reproductive justice, health care, and mass incarceration, which she examines in her book, Jailcare: Finding the Safety Net for Women Behind Bars.

Dr. Sufrin obtained her undergraduate degree in anthropology and chemistry from Amherst College, a master’s degree in social anthropology from Harvard University, and her MD from Johns Hopkins University. After her residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Pittsburgh, she completed a fellowship in family planning at University of California, San Francisco, where she also obtained a PhD in medical anthropology. Dr. Sufrin continues to do research and advocacy dedicated to improving reproductive health care for incarcerated women and to contributing to broader conversations of criminal legal system reform.

Research Interests

  • Reproductive health issues affecting incarcerated women
  • Reproductive justice, health care, and mass incarceration


  • MD, Johns Hopkins University
  • MA, Social Anthropology, Harvard University
  • BA/BS, Anthropology and Chemistry, Amherst College