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Charlene Wong, MD

Associate Professor of Pediatrics
Associate Professor in the Sanford School of Public Policy
Core Faculty Member, Duke-Margolis Center for Health Policy
Member in the Duke Clinical Research Institute
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I specialize in adolescent and young adult medicine and health services research.  Clinically, I love serving as both a primary care physician to young people ages 12-26, while also providing specialized care to this population. The types of care I specialize in include addressing young people's reproductive health concerns (for example, menstrual or contraceptive issues), chronic illnesses, behavioral challenges, and developmental difficulties. My focus is on providing high quality medical care to youth through respect for each individual, support of their physical and emotional growth, and education to empower them to be thriving, independent adults. I also spend a substantial amount of my time being an advocate for young people through health policy and research.

I serve as the Executive Director of the North Carolina Integrated Care for Kids (NC InCK) model. NC InCK is a CMS-funded pilot to develop and implement a local integrated service delivery and payment model for Medicaid/CHIP insured children (birth up to age 21).  Duke, UNC, and the North Carolina Medicaid agency are partnering to lead this effort with up to $16 million of funding to build capacity and infrastructure. All Medicaid & CHIP insured children in a 5 county area (~100,000 children in Orange, Alamance, Durham, Granville, Vance) are included in the model. 

In addition to NC InCK, my research and policy portfolio focuses on healthcare transformation and health-related behavior change, leveraging principles from behavioral economics and employing person-centered research and policy practices.  Most of my healthcare transformation projects relate to informing the transition to value-based care. My research is based out of the Department of Pediatrics, the Duke Clinical Research Institute, and the Duke-Margolis Center for Health Policy.  I direct health behaviors and needs research in the Duke Children's Health & Discovery Initiative and am the Associate Program Director for the National Clinical Scholars Program at Duke.  I am also a faculty member in the Duke Center for Childhood Obesity Research. 

Outside of work, I enjoy spending time in the outdoors with my husband and two children.

Education and Training

  • Adolescent Medicine Fellow, Pediatrics, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, 2014 - 2016
  • Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar, University of Pennsylvania, School of Medicine, 2013 - 2015
  • Internship and Residency, Pediatrics, University of Washington, School of Medicine, 2010 - 2013
  • M.S.P.H., University of Pennsylvania, School of Medicine, 2015
  • M.D., Emory University School of Medicine, 2010


Wong, Charlene A., Evan Saltzman, Carol A. Ford, and Robert Town. “Young Adults Make Different Health Plan Choices on ACA Exchange Than Older Adults.” In Journal of Adolescent Health, 60:S14–S14. Elsevier BV, 2017.

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Wang, Annabel Z., Karen A. Scherr, Charlene A. Wong, and Peter A. Ubel. “Poor Consumer Comprehension and Plan Selection Inconsistencies Under the 2016 Choice Architecture.” Mdm Policy Pract 2, no. 1 (January 2017).

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Wong, Charlene A., Alexander Bain, Daniel Polsky, Raina M. Merchant, Yaa Akosa Antwi, Gail Slap, David Rubin, and Carol A. Ford. “The Use and Out-of-Pocket Cost of Urgent Care Clinics and Retail-Based Clinics by Adolescents and Young Adults Compared With Children.” J Adolesc Health 60, no. 1 (January 2017): 107–12.

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Strane, Douglas, Benjamin French, Jennifer Eder, Charlene A. Wong, Kathleen G. Noonan, and David M. Rubin. “Low-Income Working Families With Employer-Sponsored Insurance Turn To Public Insurance For Their Children.” Health Aff (Millwood) 35, no. 12 (December 1, 2016): 2302–9.

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Bain, Alexander, Charlene A. Wong, Gail Slap, Daniel Polsky, Raina M. Merchant, Yaa Akosa Antwi, David Rubin, and Carol A. Ford. “Common and Costly Hospitalizations Among Insured Young Adults Since the Affordable Care Act.” J Adolesc Health 59, no. 1 (July 2016): 61–67.

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Hom, Jeffrey, Charlene Wong, Christian H. Stillson, Jessica Zha, Carolyn C. Cannuscio, Rachel M. Cahill, and David Grande. “NEW MEDICAID ENROLLEES SEE HEALTH AND SOCIAL BENEFITS IN PENNSYLVANIA'S EXPANSION.” In Journal of General Internal Medicine, 31:S311–12. SPRINGER, 2016.


Wong, Charlene A., Daniel E. Polsky, Arthur T. Jones, Janet Weiner, Robert J. Town, and Tom Baker. “For Third Enrollment Period, Marketplaces Expand Decision Support Tools To Assist Consumers.” Health Aff (Millwood) 35, no. 4 (April 2016): 680–87.

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Wong, Charlene A., Gabrielle Ostapovich, Emily Kramer-Golinkoff, Heather Griffis, David A. Asch, and Raina M. Merchant. “How U.S. children's hospitals use social media: A mixed methods study.” Healthc (Amst) 4, no. 1 (March 2016): 15–21.

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Wong, Charlene, Laura J. Faherty, Jordyn Feingold, Robert Town, and Rachel Werner. “Price Transparency for Children and Adolescent Healthcare in the United States: Still Opaque in 2015.” In Journal of Adolescent Health, 58:S48–S48. Elsevier BV, 2016.

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Hom, Jeffrey K., Charlene Wong, Christian Stillson, Jessica Zha, Carolyn C. Cannuscio, Rachel Cahill, and David Grande. “New Medicaid Enrollees See Health and Social Benefits in Pennsylvania's Expansion.” Inquiry 53 (2016).

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