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Michael Green, MS, MD

Michael Green, MS, MD

Professor, Department of Humanities
Professor, Department of Medicine
Division of General Internal Medicine
Scientific Program:Cancer Control

Research Interests

Dr. Michael Green joined the faculty of Penn State College of Medicine in 1996. His research has focused on decision-making, bioethics and communication, and has received funding through the NIH, the American Cancer Society and several foundations.

Most recently, Dr. Green’s research has focused on helping patients and their family members make informed decisions at the end-of-life. Together with long-time collaborator Dr. Benjamin Levi, Dr. Green is the co-creator of “Making Your Wishes Known,” an interactive computer-based decision aid that helps individuals be better prepared to make medical decisions when they can no longer speak for themselves. In diverse populations and settings, this decision aid has been shown to reliably and accurately represent patients’ wishes for life-sustaining care, to help physicians more accurately predict what patients would want, and to increase concordance between what spokespersons would choose on behalf of patients and what patients say they would actually want.

Dr. Green also is a pioneer in the use of comics in medical education. He helped establish the field of “Graphic Medicine” and has published landmark articles on the topic as well as being one of the authors of the Graphic Medicine Manifesto from Penn State University Press. He is guest editor of the Graphic Medicine section of the Annals of Internal Medicine, and he teaches a course on Comics and Medicine to 4th-year medical students, whose comics can be viewed online.

In the area of professionalism and medical training, Dr. Green has authored several important articles on truth-telling, professional identify formation, informed consent and communication, and is co-author of the book Breaking the Cycle: How to Turn Conflict into Collaboration When You and Your Patients Disagree from ACP Press.

  • Advance Care Planning
  • Decision Making
  • Randomized Controlled Trials
  • Decision Support Techniques
  • Physicians
  • Software
  • Neoplasms
  • Breast Neoplasms
  • Advance Directives
  • Education
  • Students
  • Medical Students

Recent Publications


Green, MJ, Osborne, M, Myers, KR & Schein, ZS 2023, 'Annals Graphic Medicine - Banking Blood', Annals of internal medicine, vol. 176, no. 2, pp. eG220029.
Green, MJ & Wolf, K 2023, 'Best of Graphic Medicine - The 2023 Graphic Medicine International Collective Awards', JAMA, vol. 330, no. 24, pp. 2323-2325.
Van Scoy, LJ, Scott, AM, Higgins, J, Wasserman, E, Heyland, D, Chinchilli, V & Green, MJ 2024, 'Feasibility and Acceptability of a Novel Intensive Care Unit Communication Intervention (“Let’s Talk”) and Initial Assessment Using the Multiple Goals Theory of Communication', American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Medicine, vol. 41, no. 4, pp. 373-382.
McCormick, JB, Hopkins, M, Lehman, EB & Green, MJ 2023, 'Political views and organizational distrust affect rural residents' willingness to share personal data for COVID-19 contact tracing: A cross-sectional survey study', Journal of Clinical and Translational Science, vol. 7, no. 1, e91.
Kunzler, BR, Smith, TJ, Levi, BH, Green, MJ, Badzek, L, Katsaros, MG & Van Scoy, LJ 2023, 'The Value of Advance Care Planning for Spokespersons of Patients With Advanced Illness', Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, vol. 65, no. 6, pp. 471-478.e4.
Levi, BH, Dimmock, AEF, Van Scoy, LJ, Smith, T, Kunzler, B, Foy, AJ, Badzek, L & Green, MJ 2024, 'What Counts as a Surrogate Decision?', American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Medicine, vol. 41, no. 2, pp. 125-132.


Vipler, B, Green, M, McCall-Hosenfeld, J, Haidet, P & Tisdell, E 2023, 'A Graphic Transformation: A Qualitative Study of Transformative Learning in Medical Trainees during COVID-19 Using Comics as Data Presentation', Teaching and Learning in Medicine, vol. 35, no. 3, pp. 287-302.
Van Scoy, LJ, Scott, AM, Green, MJ, Witt, PD, Wasserman, E, Chinchilli, VM & Levi, BH 2022, 'Communication Quality Analysis: A User-friendly Observational Measure of Patient–Clinician Communication', Communication Methods and Measures, vol. 16, no. 3, pp. 215-235.
Van Scoy, LJ, Levi, BH, Bramble, C, Calo, W, Chinchilli, VM, Currin, L, Grant, D, Hollenbeak, C, Katsaros, M, Marlin, S, Scott, AM, Tucci, A, VanDyke, E, Wasserman, E, Witt, P & Green, MJ 2022, 'Comparing two advance care planning conversation activities to motivate advance directive completion in underserved communities across the USA: The Project Talk Trial study protocol for a cluster, randomized controlled trial', Trials, vol. 23, no. 1, 829.
Van Scoy, LJ, Green, MJ, Smith, T, Vandyke, E, Foy, AJ, Badzek, L & Levi, BH 2022, 'Conceptualization of Surrogate Decision-making among Spokespersons for Chronically Ill Patients', JAMA network open, vol. 5, no. 12, pp. E2245608.
Green, MJ 2022, 'Graphic Medicine - The Best of 2022', JAMA, vol. 328, no. 24, pp. 2379-2380.
Maatman, T, Green, MJ & Noe, MN 2022, 'Graphic Medicine in Graduate Medical Education', Journal of graduate medical education, vol. 14, no. 1, pp. 113-114.
De Stefano, A, Rusciano, I, Moretti, V, Scavarda, A, Green, MJ, Wall, S & Ratti, S 2023, 'Graphic medicine meets human anatomy: The potential role of comics in raising whole body donation awareness in Italy and beyond. A pilot study', Anatomical sciences education, vol. 16, no. 2, pp. 209-223.
Van Scoy, LJ, Bliton, CF, Smith, T, Badzek, L, Green, M, Levi, BH & Foy, AJ 2023, 'Intrinsic Traits Such as Personality and Decision-Making Style are Predictive of Stress in Surrogate Decision-Makers', American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Medicine, vol. 40, no. 7, pp. 694-703.
McCormick, JB, Hopkins, M, Lehman, EB & Green, MJ 2022, 'Mining the Data: Exploring Rural Patients’ Attitudes about the Use of Their Personal Information in Research', AJOB Empirical Bioethics, vol. 13, no. 2, pp. 89-106.
Vidt, ME, Heitzenrater, J, Dodge, D, Potochny, J, Widders, K, Paulishak, M, Ravnic, D, Henry, CR, Green, M, Kass, R & Schmitz, KH 2022, 'The role of physical arm function and demographic disparities in breast cancer survivors’ ability to return to work', Supportive Care in Cancer, vol. 30, no. 12, pp. 10301-10310.


Kunzler, BR, Foy, AJ, Levi, BH, Van Scoy, LJ, Lehman, EB, Smith, TJ & Green, MJ 2022, 'Does Caregiver Participation in Advance Care Planning Using a Decision Support Tool Together With Patients Reduce Caregiver Strain, Burden and Anxiety Over Time? A Post-Hoc Analysis of a Randomized Controlled Trial', American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Medicine, vol. 39, no. 7, pp. 757-761.
Thiede, E, Levi, BH, Lipnick, D, Johnson, R, Seo La, I, Lehman, EB, Smith, T, Wiegand, D, Green, M & Van Scoy, LJ 2021, 'Effect of Advance Care Planning on Surrogate Decision Makers' Preparedness for Decision Making: Results of a Mixed-Methods Randomized Controlled Trial', Journal of palliative medicine, vol. 24, no. 7, pp. 982-993.
Van Scoy, LJ, Green, MJ, Creswell, J, Thiede, E, Wiegand, D, La, IS, Lipnick, D, Johnson, R, Dimmock, AE, Foy, A, Lehman, E, Chinchilli, VM & Levi, BH 2021, 'Generating a New Outcome Variable Using Mixed Methods in a Randomized Controlled Trial: The Caregiver Study—An Advance Care Planning Investigation', Journal of Mixed Methods Research, vol. 15, no. 4, pp. 567-586.
Green, MJ & Callender, B 2021, 'Graphic Medicine - The Best of 2021', JAMA, vol. 326, no. 24, pp. 2453-2455.
Van Scoy, LJ, Witt, PD, Bramble, C, Richardson, C, Putzig, I, Currin, L, Wasserman, E, Tucci, A, Levi, BH & Green, MJ 2022, 'Success of a Community-Based Delivery at Recruiting Individuals from Underserved Communities for an Observational Cohort Study of an Advance Care Planning Intervention', Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, vol. 63, no. 2, pp. e149-e154.
Simmons, DB, Levi, BH, Green, MJ, La, IS, Lipnick, D, Smith, TJ, Thiede, ER, Wiegand, DL & Van Scoy, L 2022, 'What Surrogates Understand (and Don’t Understand) About Patients’ Wishes After Engaging Advance Care Planning: A Qualitative Analysis', American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Medicine, vol. 39, no. 4, pp. 427-432.


Green, MJ, Croskerry, P & Rieck, R 2020, 'Annals graphic medicine bed blocker', Annals of internal medicine, vol. 172, no. 11, pp. W142-W148.
Van Scoy, LJ, Levi, BH, Witt, P, Bramble, C, Richardson, C, Putzig, I, Levi, AR, Wasserman, E, Chinchilli, V, Tucci, A & Green, MJ 2020, 'Association of Participation in an End-of-Life Conversation Game with Advance Care Planning Behavior and Perspectives among African American Individuals', JAMA network open, vol. 3, no. 5, pp. E204315.
Green, MJ & Wall, S 2020, 'Graphic medicine—the best of 2020', JAMA - Journal of the American Medical Association, vol. 324, no. 24, pp. 2469-2471.
Van Scoy, LJ, Green, MJ, Witt, PD, Bramble, C, Richardson, C, Putzig, I, Toyobo, O, Wasserman, E, Chinchilli, VM, Tucci, A & Levi, BH 2021, 'Low Skepticism and Positive Attitudes About Advance Care Planning Among African Americans: a National, Mixed Methods Cohort Study', Journal of general internal medicine, vol. 36, no. 3, pp. 705-712.
Lipnick, D, Green, M, Thiede, E, Smith, TJ, Lehman, EB, Johnson, R, La, IS, Wiegand, D, Levi, BH & Van Scoy, LJ 2020, 'Surrogate Decision Maker Stress in Advance Care Planning Conversations: A Mixed-Methods Analysis From a Randomized Controlled Trial', Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, vol. 60, no. 6, pp. 1117-1126.
Vidt, ME, Potochny, J, Dodge, D, Green, M, Sturgeon, K, Kass, R & Schmitz, KH 2020, 'The influence of mastectomy and reconstruction on residual upper limb function in breast cancer survivors', Breast Cancer Research and Treatment, vol. 182, no. 3, pp. 531-541.