Michael Chaitkin is a project manager, policy analyst, and diplomat with experience in global health, sustainable development, international security, and cross-cultural education. Most recently he served as Special Assistant to the World Bank’s Chief Economist for Sustainable Development, coordinating a $1M green growth research and knowledge-sharing program, organizing international workshops, and shaping inputs into multilateral fora like the G20’s Development Working Group and the UN’s post-2015 discourse. In 2009-10 Michael was a Luce Scholar in Beijing, China, where he consulted for a graduate program and lectured on nuclear- and energy-related tensions in Sino-US relations at Renmin University. Michael received his B.A. in International Relations from Stanford University in 2008. His undergraduate thesis on economic sanctions received the William J. Perry Award for Excellence in Interdisciplinary Research and was published by NYU’s Center on International Cooperation. Michael is currently a master’s candidate in Health Policy and Management at the Harvard School of Public Health.
Yoni Dvorkis, 2015 Master of Science (SM2 – Policy Track), HPM
Yoni is a part time student in the policy track of the SM2 program in Health Policy and Management, which he began in the Fall of 2011. In addition to completing his Masters Degree, Yoni works full time at the Harvard University Health Services (HUHS) as a Financial Data and Reporting Analyst, where he provides analytic support to HUHS in its various initiatives, such as Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) and Meaningful Use Certifications. Yoni developed and currently administers a comprehensive claims database which supports HUHS in key functions including financial operations, health policy planning, and clinical best-practice initiatives. Prior to attending HSPH and working at HUHS, Yoni was a Healthcare Data Analyst for a disease management consulting firm. He is interested in medical informatics and how data analytics supports various aspects of the health care delivery system, such as the implementation of ACA health reform initiatives in Massachusetts and the US. Yoni received a Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics with a Minor in Economics from Tufts University in 2005. Born in Israel, his family moved to the United States when he was five years old.
Katherine Heflin, 2015 Master of Science Candidate (SM2 – Policy Track), HPM
Katherine, raised in Silver Lake, Kansas, is in her second year in the Health Policy and Management department and is completing the Women, Gender, and Health (WGH) Concentration. While at HSPH, Katherine has done work at The Fenway Institute and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, in ASPE’s Health Policy Office. She is currently working for the Harvard Center on Population and Development. Katherine is also doing her Applied Research Project (ARP) on elderly healthcare access in Massachusetts. The ARP project is with HPM’s own Nancy Turnbull, Associate Dean for Professional Education, as well as the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation, the Urban Institute, and a few other local organizations/agencies. Before HSPH, Katherine worked in the San Francisco Bay Area and Washington, D.C. in the domains of human rights, sexual and reproductive health, domestic violence, and low-income access to legal services.
Kevin Nguyen, 2015 Master of Science Candidate (SM2 – Policy Track), HPM
Kevin is a second-year student in the policy track of the Health Policy and Management department. Prior to attending HSPH, Kevin worked for three years as a health policy analyst in the Health Care Quality and Outcomes Program at Research Triangle Institute (RTI) International. At RTI, Kevin’s work focused on implementation of Affordable Care Act programs, including the measurement and evaluation of quality of care provided to long-term care patients. While at HSPH, Kevin has served as the Student Ambassador for the HPM department, as well as a research assistant for Drs. Anna Sinaiko and Benjamin Sommers.
Following graduation, Kevin would like to continue a career in research and to use data to inform policies that improve quality and accessibility of care for underserved populations. Kevin grew up in North Carolina, and earned a BSPH in Health Policy & Management from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Gillings School of Global Public Health.
Meagan is a master’s student in the department of Health Policy & Management, pursing concentrations in Public Health Leadership and Health Communication. Prior to HSPH, Meagan worked in Washington, D.C. conducting strategic communications research and consulting for a diverse range of healthcare companies, including pharmaceutical and biotech manufacturers, diagnostic vendors, hospitals, health insurers, and nonprofit advocacy groups. In her role Meagan managed quantitative and qualitative market research studies and led data analysis to identify industry trends and develop recommendations for clients. Meagan’s academic interests focus on healthcare management, specifically process improvement and using evidence-based approaches to improve quality and reduce costs. She is also interested in the application of behavioral science to patient engagement and translating this knowledge into effective health policies and system improvements. Meagan graduated from the University of Maryland with a dual degree; a B.S. in Business (Marketing) and a B.A. in Psychology.
Winnieis pursuing the management track in the SM2 Health Policy & Management program. Prior to attending HSPH, she worked in Washington DC at Mathematica Policy Research on projects related to primary care, Medicare Advantage, and essential health benefits under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. One of her main projects at Mathematica was on the patient-centered medical home (PCMH), for which she worked collaboratively with the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) to develop a summary of the evidence base on the PCMH, to refine the model, and to develop new approaches to deliver and evaluate the model. Winnie continues to be deeply committed to the field of primary care and hopes to pursue a career that will transform primary care when she graduates.
As a current Academic Innovations Collaborative intern, Winnie is helping Cambridge Health Alliance’s Primary Care Center (PCC) implement a complex care management program and analyze inappropriate and appropriate use of the emergency department by PCC’s patients. Winnie is also a recipient of Harvard Medical School’s Abundance Agents of Change Challenge Grant and will be working with her team to integrate Tai Chi workshops into Bowdoin Street Health Center to reduce fall risk in the elderly. Originally from Taiwan, Winnie grew up in Maryland and earned a B.A. in Economics and Health & Societies from the University of Pennsylvania.
Melina is a second year student in the management track of the HPM SM2 degree program. Prior to HSPH, Melina worked at John Snow, Inc. (JSI), a public health research and consulting firm in Boston dedicated to improving the health of vulnerable populations in the US and abroad. In JSI’s Health Services division, she was responsible for tracking the impact and implementation of the Affordable Care Act to guide JSI’s business development efforts. In addition, she worked on a number of client projects ranging from studying best practices in order to reduce avoidable hospital readmissions among the Medicaid population to conducting a cross-site evaluation of practices in Maine integrating mental health and primary care. While at JSI and HSPH, Melina has served on the Executive Board of Boston Young Healthcare Professionals, an organization dedicated to connecting healthcare professionals in the Boston area to develop strong cross-sector relationships and knowledge.
Drawing upon these experiences, Melina is interested in the intersection of research, policy and management to study and implement innovative solutions to improve access to quality and coordinated care for high-risk patient populations. Melina is completing coursework in both the policy and management tracks, focusing on ways to spread best practices that have the potential to improve quality and lower cost within start-up and more traditional health system settings. At HSPH she is actively engaged in the Harvard Innovation Lab and is a Research Assistant studying outcomes of the ACA.
Marie has a deep interest in innovation in health care and, specifically, the future of health information technology. At Harvard, she has assembled an interdisciplinary curriculum from courses at not only the School of Public Health, but the business, law, and public policy schools to gain perspective on current topics in health & technology strategy. She has further tailored her degree through a range of research projects and by completing her practicum at Partners HealthCare within their Population Health Management group. Marie is a teaching assistant for Drs. Lucian Leape and Ashish Jha’s Health Care Quality and Safety Course, and also serves as a Co-President of the HSPH Women in Leadership Student Organization.
Prior to Harvard, Marie worked for five years at The Advisory Board Company, a health care research & consulting firm located in Washington, DC. In this role, she conducted health care research in a wide range of terrains, including strategic planning, cost control, and quality improvement. As one of the firm’s health IT experts, she helped to launched and lead a consulting service that guided chief information officers on how to adopt electronic health records in line with regulatory requirements and other strategic mandates.Marie has a B.A. from the University of Virginia in Economics and Comparative Literature.
Tari Owi, 2014 Master of Science (SM2 – Management track), HPM
Prior to attending the Harvard School of Public Health, Tari Owi worked as a Research Analyst at Thomson Reuters (now Truven Health Analytics) Healthcare & Science outcomes research department. At Reuters, Tari was responsible for data analysis and coordinating project teams made up of researchers, statisticians, economists, and analysts working primarily on cost modeling and treatment pattern outcomes projections for pharmaceutical clients and Fortune 500 firms. Tari also worked for the Director of Health Information Exchange at the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) for Health Information Technology in the Office of the Secretary at the United States Department of Health and Human Services. At ONC, Tari staffed the Information Exchange Workgroup of the Health Information Technology Policy Committee, as well as worked directly with state health departments using electronic medical records at immunization registries and critical access hospitals. Since beginning at HSPH, Tari has continued to work in the health IT space as a research assistant for Health IT expert and Associate Professor Dr. Ashish Jha. Tari holds a BA in Political Science with an Interdisciplinary Concentration in Health Politics and Policy from Yale University.
Claire was a Masters student in the Department of Health Policy and Management (HPM), focusing on Health Policy and Public Health Leadership. In addition, she works part time as Research and Consulting Intern at John Snow Inc., focusing on projects in domestic policy analysis and implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. She also serves as the Staff Assistant for the HSPH Center for Public Health Leadership, and is the founder and Co-Director of the annual HSPH Youth and Public Health Conference. Claire has also enjoyed TAing several classes this year, including US Health Policy and Public Health Leadership, is an enthusiastic player of intramural sports, and attempts to attend as many as possible of the amazing speakers and events that Harvard and the surrounding community have to offer. This past summer Claire worked at USAID, at the Center for Accelerating Innovation and Impact, as part of their Global Health Fellows Program where she explored her interest in the way private sector models can be adapted to help promote the scale-up and development of high impact innovations in the area of reproductive and maternal health.
Before HSPH Claire was part of the Global Health Corps Fellowship program, working as a Health Literacy Consultant at UMDNJ’s University Hospital in Newark, NJ. She remains active in the GHC community, and is a Co-Founder and Chair of their Boston Alumni Chapter. Prior to that she worked at UCSF’s AIDS Health Project, on their Trainings and Publications teams. She received a B.A. in Public Policy Analysis with a focus in Medical Anthropology from Pomona College in 2010. In her free time Claire enjoys word games, potlucks, bad political humor, and pretty much any kind of outdoor or athletic activity.
Prior to graduate school, Emilie obtained her B.S. in Psychobiology and Minor in Public Health from UCLA. She then joined ZS Associates in San Francisco, where she focused on quantitative and qualitative market research in oncology to improve understanding of trends in share, drivers of physician behavior, and patterns of product use. She also restructured the early stages of a reimbursement experience tracker for a pharmaceutical company and identified innovative marketing strategies that would resonate in the health care space. Emilie is passionate about developing effective and innovative ways to manage chronic disease. She is interested in the potential of data-driven health care, particularly in the medical device space. During her time at Harvard, she worked for a start-up developing a tech-based education delivery platform, focusing on addressing patient health literacy to improve disease management. She also spent her summer with a global medical device company, developing business models for diabetes devices against a backdrop of changing reimbursement, pricing, and regulatory conditions.
Emilie describes coming to the Harvard School of Public Health as an incredible experience: “Beyond academics, HSPH brings together people who are constantly looking for ways to improve health care from every perspective. What we learn in the classroom is directly applicable to conversations and ideas about how to bring positive change to the system. The faculty and students are a wealth of information and are open to sharing their thoughts and experiences.” After her time at HSPH, Emilie says she hopes to “take part in the health care revolution, with the intent on improving health outcomes through increasing patient engagement and improving chronic disease management.”
Brian Walker, 2014 Master of
Science (SM2 Management track), HPM
Brian Walker was a student in the Health Policy and Management program at HSPH. After graduating from Brigham Young University with a BS in Business Management, Brian worked for The Boston Consulting Group and Ridgemont Equity Partners. Passionate about entrepreneurial health care ventures, he left the world of financial services in 2010 to start a pediatric surgery center in Houston, Texas. After filing formation documents, Brian proceeded through the steps of surgery center development: architectural modifications, equipment and supply purchasing, CMS and state survey preparation, policy and procedure implementation, and physician recruitment. As Chairman and CEO, Brian often observed the preparation, surgery, and recovery of the young patients at his center, which led him to seek out current and evidence-based research in quality improvement and patient safety. Harvard University’s involvement in the development of the safe surgery checklist prompted him to search for an academic program that would allow him to learn directly from these experts. When visiting HSPH and speaking with the Health Policy and Management Department, Brian was impressed with the relevance and practical nature of the program. As a current student, Brian is focused on finding safer and more efficient ways to provide health services and plans to continue a career in health care entrepreneurship upon graduation in 2014.
Prior to attending HSPH, Jessica worked as a health policy analyst for a boutique policy and political consulting firm in Washington, DC. There, she helped providers navigate the federal and regulatory landscape by providing information and analyses pertaining to Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement policies and implementation efforts surrounding the Affordable Care Act. At HSPH, Jessica has enjoyed enhancing her analytical skills and learning about the drivers of health care expenditures. She also serves as a teaching assistant for economic and policy classes and is a member of the Women in Leadership Executive Board. During this time, Jessica has also pursued various professional opportunities. The summer before her second year, Jessica interned at the White House Office of Management and Budget where she helped the Medicaid Branch tackle issues pertaining to long-term care. She now interns for the Government Payer Strategy division of Partners HealthCare.
Graciela Carrasco, 2013 Master of Science(SM2 – Research track), HPM
Graciela was raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico, and has family roots in the Mexican state of Michoacán. She received her bachelor’s degree in biology, with a minor in health policy, from Harvard University. She is a former Harvard Center for Public Interest Careers Fellow, and her public health experience includes work with the AIDS Institute in New York and the Center for Multicultural
Maura Fulton, 2013 Master of Science (SM2 – Policy track), HPM
Maura Fulton was a Master’s student in the Department of Health Policy and Management. She is focusing on domestic health policy and expects to graduate in May 2013. Prior to matriculation to HSPH, Maura did advocacy work for a women’s health care provider organization in Michigan, and was a research and program evaluation analyst for a national residency training program initiative at the University of California, San Francisco. During her first year at HSPH, Maura had the opportunity to travel to Kenya to conduct research with the Population Council. She presented the outcomes from this study at the 2012 American Public Health Association annual meeting. For her summer internship at HSPH, Maura was a Health Policy Fellow in the United States Senate, working on legislative issues related to health care delivery and health system reform. At HSPH, Maura sits on the executive leadership teams of the Women in Leadership (WIL) and Quality Improvement and Patient Safety (QIPS) student groups. She plans to pursue work for a public payer on the state or federal level after graduation. Maura received a B.A. in Sociology and English Literature from McGill University in 2007. In her spare time she find pleasure in culinary experimentation, hiking, and the steep student discounts that allow her to enjoy the Boston Ballet season.
Sofiya Penek, 2013 Master of Science (SM2 – Management track), HPM
Sofiya was a Health Policy & Management Master’s student at HSPH. She developed her interests in patient-centered, team-based care while interning as an HIV Case Manager at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center during college. Prior to attending HSPH, she worked as a research assistant in the Cancer Control Program at Georgetown University Medical Center in Washington, DC. The research focused on patient education, medical-decision making, and quality of life for patients diagnosed with prostate cancer. Since coming to HSPH, Sofiya’s interests have expanded to health care delivery redesign, change management, and quality improvement. During the summer of 2012, she gained hands-on experience as the Patient Centered Medical Home coordinator at Codman Square Health Center in Dorchester, MA, with a focus on primary care delivery transformation and NCQA application submission. Sofiya is currently the Staff Assistant for the HSPH Center for Public Health Leadership and a member of the HSPH Women in Leadership executive team. Originally from Ukraine, Sofiya grew up in Massachusetts and earned a BA in Psychology and Spanish at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst.
Margaret Senese, 2013 Master of Science (SM2 – Research track), HPM
Prior to her graduate studies, Margaret spent five years as a data analyst at Atrius Health, supporting quality, safety, and research initiatives in the ambulatory setting. She spent the past summer at Arcadia Solutions, a health care technology consulting firm, researching the Meaningful Use experience at a community health system. Of this experience she says, “This was incredibly eye opening for me. I strongly agree with the HITECH Act incentivizing and accelerating EHR adoption. But this was my first time in a clinic only months after go-live, and I saw firsthand how disruptive the system is to the entire staff. There is a lot of opportunity to use technology to redesign care, rather than just layering it on top of existing processes.” She is currently interning in the process improvement department at Hallmark Health. Additionally, she is working as a research assistant for Professor Nancy Kane, helping to conduct a financial analysis of the Massachusetts safety net hospital system. “The Harvard name really opens doors for you, and I have learned quite a bit in my courses. But best of all, my classmates have great professional experience and varied perspectives, and they are wicked smart, too. There is a strong sense of collegiality and collaboration within our cohort. We definitely have the best department at HSPH!” Margaret has a BS in mathematics from Tufts University. She lives in Cambridge with her husband and their Dalmatian.
Heather Bello, 2012 Master of Science (SM2 – Management track), HPM
Heather Bello wasa 2012 graduate of the HPM SM2 program. After graduating from Boston College in 2005, Heather spent two years working in the MA House of Representatives in the Committee on Public Health. It was here that she participated in the passage of Health Reform in Massachusetts. Her time at the State House made her keenly aware of the need for new care delivery and payment models. Heather wanted to be a part of developing and implementing these new strategies, which led her to leave the State House in 2007 to work at the Center for Connected Health (CCH). CCH is a division of Partners Healthcare whose mission is to research and develop new and innovative ways to utilize technology in delivering care to patients outside of the hospital setting. While at CCH Heather worked on a number of programs, one of which began as a large RCT aimed at determining the clinical effectiveness and financial outcomes associated with the use of a hypertension self management and monitoring program. Over the past two years Heather worked on the scaling and operationalization of this program, which has recently spun out into a for profit entity called Healthrageous.
Jesse Ortendahl, 2012 Master of Science (SM2 – Research track), HPM
Jesse Ortendahl was a part-time student in the research track of the SM2 program, which he began in Fall 2008. Since 2003, Jesse has worked as a researcher with Professor Sue Goldie of HPM, using decision analytic methods and models to inform cervical cancer policy domestically and internationally. Jesse earned a BS from University of Massachusetts-Amherst in Mathematics and Statistics, and has an interest in economics and using quantitative methods to improve decision-making and increase efficiency in resource allocation. He worked as a TA for several years for the Economic Analysis course. In May 2011, Jesse was honored with the Harvard School of Public Health Teaching Assistant Award.
Uzaib Saya, 2012 Master of Science (SM2 – Policy track), HPM
Prior to attending HSPH, Uzaib Saya he worked in the Division of Pharmacoepidemiology and Pharmacoeconomics at Brigham & Women’s Hospital, helping to investigate how prescription drug usage policies in the US could lower co-payments and promote the use of generic drugs. Uzaib grew up in Karachi, Pakistan and received his undergraduate degree from Williams College where he majored in History, and concentrated in Middle Eastern Studies. In his junior year, he participated in a program that took him to India, China, and South Africa to study the health effects of globalization. During his first year at HSPH, Uzaib worked with Naya Jeevan in Karachi on an independent study project, investigating payment capacities of primary care services beneficiaries at a social enterprise dedicated to improving access to catastrophic health insurance coverage for urban, low-income families. Uzaib spent the summer of 2011 in Malawi interning with Innovations for Poverty Action, an international development non-profit organization. While there he worked on a research project exploring the returns and risks of various informal saving options, and their impact on affordability of various expenses, including health care. Interested in innovative methods to finance health care in low-income countries, he aims to apply this experience and understand the extent to which small amounts of money can help save up for large health care expenses, in the same way that micro-finance organizations are able to provide readily available lines of credit to small business owners.
Martyna Skowron, 2012 Master of Science (SM2), HPM
Martyna Skowron was born and raised in Czestochowa, Poland. Her family moved to the United States when she was 13 years old. Martyna graduated from Georgetown University in 2009 with a Bachelor of Science in Human Science and International Health. Among her activities at Georgetown, Martyna served as president on the Student Academic Council, participated in health systems research in Ghana and translational science research in Argentina, helped set up a medical/dental clinic in the Yucatán Peninsula in Mexico, and served as a volunteer EMT on campus. Before coming to HSPH, Martyna worked for Booz Allen Hamilton on the Civil Health team and in strategic planning and new clinical program development at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. Martyna interests revolve around operational efficiency, streamlining workflows, and innovative and strategic planning at hospitals and healthcare delivery settings.