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Laura L . Heinemann, PhD

Director, Undergraduate Programs in Medical Anthropology and Cultural Anthropology

Associate Professor


College of Arts and Sciences
Medical Humanities
Cultural & Social Studies
Global Health Equity Minor
Medical Anthropology
CRHL - Creighton Hall/Administration Building - 439

Laura L . Heinemann, PhD

Director, Undergraduate Programs in Medical Anthropology and Cultural Anthropology

Associate Professor

Laura L. Heinemann, PhD, MSW, MA is an Associate Professor of Medical Anthropology in the Department of Cultural and Social Studies at Creighton University, with a secondary appointment in the Department of Medical Humanities at Creighton’s School of Medicine. She also is the director of undergraduate programs in anthropology at Creighton. Her research foci include caregiving, care work, and interdependence; health and healthcare systems and practices; kinship and domestic life; food and community health; and migration, displacement, and health. Dr. Heinemann holds Master’s degrees in Social Work and in Anthropology, and a Joint PhD in Social Work and Anthropology, all from University of Michigan.

Curriculum Vitae

Teaching Interests

  • Medical Anthropology

Research Focus

Care, Caregiving, and Care Work; Kinship and Domestic Life; Health Policy, Systems, and Practice; Food Systems, Foodways, and Community Health; North America, U.S. Midwest, Haiti; Migration, Displacement, and Health; Community-Based Participatory Action Research


Cultural and Social Studies


Associate Professor


  • Heinemann, Laura L., 2016. Transplanting Care: Shifting Commitments in Health and Care in the United States. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press. Reviews: Rubinstein, Ellen. 2018. “Laura L. Heinemann’s Transplanting Care.” Somatosphere, March 1, 2018. Crowley-Matoka, Megan. 2017. “Book Review, Transplanting Care: Shifting Commitments in Health and Care in the U.S. Heinemann, Laura L., New Brunswick NJ: Rutgers University Press, 2016, 186 pp.” Medical Anthropology Quarterly 31(4): NA. doi: 10.1111/maq.12381. 2016


  • Heinemann, Laura L., 2020. Living with Transplant: Never Quite Beyond Illness. Medicine Anthropology Theory 7(2): 82-92. 2020
  • 2019. Heinemann, Laura L., Claire Herzog, Margo Minnich, Celeste Mitchell, Laeth Nasir, Alexander Rdlach, Chaitri Desai, and Melanie Kim, with commentaries by John Tluang and Govin Magar. 'The Competing and Shifting Relevance of Social Capitals in Successful Refugee Resettlement.' Chapter 1 in The Crux of Refugee Resettlement: Rebuilding Social Networks , edited by Andrew Nelson, Alexander Roedlach, and Roos Willems, 3-28. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books. 2018
  • Heinemann, Laura L., 2015. Accommodating Care: Transplant Caregiving and the Melding of Health Care with Home Life in the United States. Medicine Anthropology Theory 2(1): 32-56. 2015
  • Medical anthropology quarterly
    Heinemann, Laura L., 2014. For The Sake of Others: Reciprocal Webs of Obligation and The Pursuit of Transplantation as a Caring Act. Medical Anthropology Quarterly 28(1): 66-84. 2014
  • Journal of Religion & Society
    Heinemann, Laura L., 2011. Part of the Plan? Faith In and Through Solid Organ and Blood-Forming Stem Cell Transplantation. Theme issue, Religion, Health, and Healing: An Interdisciplinary Inquiry, edited by Barbara J. Dilly and Alexander Rdlach. Journal of Religion and Society Supplement 7: 216-234. Online: 2011


  • Heinemann, Laura L., 2014. Care: Deviation. Fieldsites Fieldnotes, Cultural Anthropology Online, April 02, 2014, 2014

Editing and Reviews

  • Anthropos
    Heinemann, Laura L., 2013. Review of Inhorn, Marcia C., and Emily A. Wentzell (eds.): Medical Anthropology at the Intersections: Histories, Activisms, and Futures. Durham: Duke University Press, 2012. 343 pp. ISBN 978-0-8223-5270-9. (Anthropos 108[2]:667-669). 2013


  • "Soul Doctors: The Role of Hospital Chaplains in Restoring Faith." Co-presentation with Nasreen Quadri, Elizabeth Kitamura, and Allison Benjamin. 2023 Race, Religion & Social Justice Conference at Tri-Faith Commons in Omaha, Nebraska. June 2023. 2023
  • "Learning with COVID on Campus: Lessons on Community Participation & Interdisciplinary Team Research." Co-authors Alexander Roedlach, Alissa Jeffrey, Anna Kotula (and in collaboration with Monica White, Cathy Fox, Jamaica Dulluog, Megan Loh, Chloe Cassens, Thea Pflum, and Angela Maynard). First author and co-presented with Alissa Jeffrey. 2022 Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association (AAA), Seattle, Washington. November 2022. 2022
  • Ad-Hoc Care: Improvising Through Health Care Transitions. Poster Presentation co-authored and co-presented with Bridget Backer, Creighton undergraduate student. 2022 Society for Applied Anthropology Annual Meeting, Virtual Meeting, hosted in Norfolk, VA. -0001
  • Centering Culture and Community at the Bedside. Presentation at 2021 Clarkson College Alumni Association Continuing Education Event, Ethics Beyond Clinical that Impact Health Care, Omaha, NE. Co-authors/Co-presenters: LaShaune Johnson, PhD, Associate Professor at Creighton University, and Emily Sierra, MPH Student at University of Pittsburgh. -0001
  • Changes Prior to SUDEP: What Caretakers Noticed. Poster and Platform Abstract submitted to 2021 American Epilepsy Society Annual Meeting by First/Presenting Author Kristina Simeone, PhD. Co-authors: Dawn Martnez, Shruthi Iyer, Shelby Herr, Cameron Booth, Laura Heinemann, Pierce Greenberg, Samantha Draves, Stephanie Matthews, and Timothy Simeone. -0001
  • Self-Care Dilemmas: Everyday Patchworking under the Chronic Conditions of Structural Abandonment. Single-Author Paper for organized session, Stratified Responsibility: Politics and Ethics of Chronicity. 2021 Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association (AAA), Baltimore, MD. -0001
  • Community Engaged Research for Impact. (Co-panelist with LaShaune Johnson, PhD, Associate Professor at Creighton University and April Dixon, MPH, First Lady of Immanuel Community Church and Health Educator, Creighton School of Medicine) 2021 Webinar, Sponsored by the American Sociological Association and the Section on Sociological Practice and Public Sociology. -0001
  • He Just Has No One: An Ethnographic Examination of Loneliness and Healthcare as Encountered by One Low-Income Older Adult Without Close Living Kin. (Single-Author Paper for organized session, Loneliness in the Context of Aging Before and During COVID-19.) 2021 Society for Applied Anthropology Annual Meeting, Virtual Meeting, hosted in Norfolk, VA. -0001
  • Connecting Anthropology through Practice, Part I and Part II. (Panel Contributor along with Elissa Faro, University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine; Gemmae Fix, VA & Boston University School of Medicine; Ellen Rubinstein, NDSU; Marian Thorpe, Princeton University; Peter Taber, University of Utah.) 2021 Society for Applied Anthropology Annual Meeting, Virtual Meeting, hosted in Norfolk, VA. -0001
  • Weaving the Kitchen Cupboard into Health Care Practice: Lessons from Ethnographic Observations of Home Health Care in the U.S. Midwest Co-presented with undergraduate student Bridget Backer. 2020 Human/e Health & Healthcare Symposium, Creighton University, Omaha, NE. -0001


  • 2017 Creighton Global Initiative Award, “Understanding the Process of Developing Cultural Competency in Facilitating Cross Cultural Communication While Implementing Patient Centered Care” (Kristina Peterkin; Kim Galt, PharmD, PhD; Laura Heinemann, PhD; Amanda Holman, PhD; Lisa Jordan, OTR/L; Faith Kurtyka, PhD; Janel Meis, OTD; Kelly Nelson, DPT; Angela Patterson, OTD; Kendra Schnack, OT student. Faculty Collaborator; offered proposal edits).

  • 2019-2020 Haddix Full-Year Sabbatical Award, “Health Care at Home: Ethnographic Explorations of Post-Discharge Care in Home Settings.” College of Arts & Sciences, Creighton University.


  • Outstanding Teacher of the Week
    Delta Zeta, Theta Eta Chapter, Creighton University
  • Professional Excellence in Major Advising
    College of Arts and Sciences Dean
  • IGGY Award
    Awarded for outstanding freshman mentors, counselors, advocates and role models
    Creighton University
  • Distinction - Preliminary Examinations in Socio-Cultural Anthropology
    University of Michigan
  • Rackham Regents Fellowship
    University of Michigan Rackham School of Graduate Studies