School of Public Health

Schiff, Melissa

Melissa Schiff

Professor, Epidemiology
Professor, OBGYN


MD University of Michigan, 1987
MPH Epidemiology, University of Washington, 2001

Contact Info

Department of Epidemiology
School of Public Health
1959 Pacific St. NE
Seattle, WA 98195
Tel: 206-543-8095

Dr. Schiff is Professor in the Department of Epidemiology in the School of Public Health and in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology in the School of Medicine. She obtained her undergraduate degree in Psychology as well as her medical degree at the University of Michigan. She completed her residency training in Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of New Mexico. She received her master of public health in Epidemiology from the University of Washington. She currently is the Director of the Maternal and Child Health Program and a faculty member at the Harborview Injury Prevention and Research Center.


  • Soccer injuries in middle school girls
  • Evaluation of the Zachery Lystedt (concussion) Law in Washington State
  • Pregnancy outcomes among women with disabilities
  • Risk factors for severe maternal morbidity
  • Predictors of success for in-vitro fertilization


Harborview Injury and Prevention Center:

Research Interests

Dr. Schiff's primary areas of research interests are reproductive and perinatal epidemiology and injury epidemiology. A primary focus of her research is the area of maternal health and injury and she has utilized the Washington State population-based birth and hospitalization databases to evaluate a variety of mechanisms of injury including motor vehicle crashes, falls, and suicide as well as the effects of trauma systems on pregnancy outcomes. She has also used these databases for evaluation of obstetric complications including  shoulder dystocia, peri-partum hysterectomy, and severe maternal morbidity,  and  as well as adverse pregnancy outcomes among American Indian/Alaska Native women and very young teens. Another focus of her research is the area of sports injuries including those related to soccerand concussions.

Teaching Interests

Dr. Schiff teaches Epi 585 "Injury and Violence: A Public Health Approach" during Fall Quarter of even calendar years.


O’Kane JW, Levy MR, Neradilek M, Polissar NL, Schiff MA. Evaluation of the Zachery Lystedt law among female youth soccer players. Physician in Sports Medicine 2014;42:39-44.

*Callegari LS, Nelson KM, Arterburn DE, Prager SW, Schiff MA, Schwarz EB. Factors associated with lack of effective contraception among obese women in the United States. Contraception 2014;90:265-271.

Chrisman SP, Rivara FP, Schiff MA, Zhou C, Comstock RD. Risk factors for concussive symptoms for 1 week or longer in high school athletes. Brain Injury 2013;27:1-9.

Gray KE, Wallace ER, Nelson KR, Reed SD, Schiff MA.Population-based study of risk factors for severe maternal morbidity. Paediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology 2012;26:506-514.

Schiff MA, Mack CD, Kaufman RP, Holt VL, Grossman DC. The effect of airbags on pregnancy outcomes in Washington State, 2002-2005. Obstetrics and Gynecology 2010;115:85-92.

In The News

Study Finds Trauma Centers Improve Outcomes for Injured Pregnant Women
UW School of Public Health News, 01/29/2016

Trauma centers improve outcomes for injured pregnant women
Journal of the American College of Surgeons, 01/13/2016

High School Athletes Often Played with Concussion
UW School of Public Health News, 04/07/2014