• Associate Dean of Practice and Community Collaboration, College Of Nursing
  • Director of Primary Care, Faculty Practice, College Of Nursing
  • Professor (Clinical), College Of Nursing

Research Summary

I am interested in research involving adolescent health. My particular specialty is adolescents within the juvenile correction system. My research has focused within the juvenile correction system on the following: • Health Literacy • The prevalence of Chlamydia and Gonorrhea • The prevalence of high-risk sexual behaviors.


  • Doctor of Nursing Practice, Nursing, University of Utah
  • Masters of Nursing , Nursing, Brigham Young University
  • Bachelors Of Science in Nursing, Nursing, Indiana University
  • Certified Correctional Health Professional, Correctional Health Care, National Commission for Correctional Health Care
  • Certified Correctional Health Professional- Advanced, Correctional Health Care, National Commission on Correctional Health Care


Dr. Clifton is a Family Nurse Practitioner, and has been a faculty member at the University of Utah College of Nursing (CON) since 2005. During this period, Dr. Clifton’s role has incorporated patient care (2005-present), online graduate instruction (2006-2017, 2020-present), and clinical and practice management (2012-present). In addition, she serves as a primary care provider in Utah’s Juvenile Justice and Youth services (JJYS) clinics, and at the Summit County Health Department . Dr. Clifton currently serves as both the Associate Dean of Faculty Practice (Interim) and the Director of Primary Care for the CON Faculty Practice.

 Dr. Clifton has 33 years of nursing experience. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree from Indiana University in 1989. As a Registered Nurse, she worked in medical/surgical, intensive and cardiac care, and home care settings. In 1998, Dr. Clifton earned her Master of Science in Nursing degree, specializing as a family nurse practitioner, from Brigham Young University. She earned her Doctor of Nursing Practice degree from the University of Utah in 2010. In 2016, she became a Certified Correctional Health Care Professional (CCHP), a certification sponsored by the National Commission on Correctional Health Care (NCCHC). Dr. Clifton earned CCHP-A (Advanced) certification in 2021, and is one of only approximately 40 people nationwide to hold this advanced certification. She speaks nationally regarding a variety of topics concerning juvenile correctional health care, and currently serves on the NCCHC Juvenile Health Committee and the NCCHC Accreditation and Standards Committee. She also serves on the NCCHC Board of Representatives as liaison with the American Association of Nurse Practitioners.

 Dr. Clifton completed the Duke-Johnson & Johnson Nurse Leader fellowship in 2016. She is very proud that in 2018, the CON/JJS collaboration was awarded the American Association of Colleges of Nursing Exemplary Academic-Practice Partnership Award. In 2020, Dr. Clifton was inducted as a fellow into the American Association of Nurse Practitioners.

Career Highlights

In 2015 and 2016, Dr. Clifton spearheaded efforts to obtain funding for screening of Chlamydia ad Gonorrhea in the Juvenile Justice Services (JJS) setting. These efforts twice resulted in an $80,000 allocation to JJS for this purpose. In 2017, on-going funding was awarded to this project by the Utah State Legislature as part of the annual state budget.  

In 2018, Dr. Clifton became the first liaison of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners to the National Commission on Correctional Health (NCCHC) Board of Directors. She is also a member of the NCCHC JuvenileHealth Committee.