RWJ awards $1.1 million in health research grants

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJ) on Wednesday announced the eight recipients of $1.1 million in research grants aimed at helping policymakers — both national and state — implement the many reforms in the new healthcare law.

The researchers — funded by RWJ's State Health Access Reform Evaluation (SHARE) program — will tackle issues as diverse as expanding rural coverage, evaluating income eligibility and managing diabetes care. 

“As the nation implements the new healthcare law, states are going to be entering some uncharted waters,” Brian Quinn, RWJ's senior program officer, said in a statement. “We are proud to support these eight projects that will help states tackle difficult issues and navigate the changing health care system.”

The recipients are:

• Len Nichols, George Mason University: "Developing a Monitoring Strategy for Health Reform’s Progress and Effects" (completion scheduled for Aug. 31, 2011).
• John Czajka, Mathematica Policy Research: "Eligibility Determination Using Modified Adjusted Gross Income: Implications for Enrollment Under Federal Reform" (June 15, 2011).
• Joel Cantor, Rutgers Center for State Health Policy: "Evaluation of State and Federal Young Adult Dependent Coverage Expansion Policies" (April 30, 2013). 
• Andy Coburn, University of Southern Maine: "Expanding Coverage and Ensuring Access: The Challenges and Opportunities of Implementing Health Reform in Rural America" (Aug. 31, 2011).
• Theresa Sachs, Health Management Associates: "Implications and Options for State-Funded Programs Under Health Reform" (Aug. 31, 2011). 
• Lara Shore-Sheppard, Williams College: "Income Dynamics and the Characteristics of Health Reform Expansion Populations" (Aug. 31, 2012). 
• Mike O’Grady, the University of Chicago's National Opinion Research Center: "Strategies for Moving the SNACC Project to the Next Level – Leveraging SNACC Data for Policy and Evaluation" (Nov. 30, 2010). 
• Kate Baicker, Harvard University: "Using Behavioral Nudges to Improve Disease Management: Cost-Effective Strategies for Improving Care of Low-Income Diabetics" (Aug. 31, 2011). 

"The funding of these grants will allow us to have some of the best thinkers in the country examining these important implementation activities related to the Affordable Care Act,” said Lynn Blewett, Ph.D., director of SHARE. “Both state and national policymakers will benefit from our findings."

This post was updated at 4:22 p.m. to include timelines for completion and the total cost of the grants.