Studying System-Level Care Coordination Among Hospitals, Communities and Public Health Agencies
The aim of this lab is to study system-level care coordination among hospitals, communities, and public health agencies that can improve population mental health and reduce health disparities. Our group uses interdisciplinary approaches and involves collaboration with clinical leaders, community partners and organizational decision-makers.
Our team is led by Dr. Jie Chen, PhD, a professor in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the University of Maryland School of Public Health. Dr. Chen has more than ten years of research experience developing, refining, and applying analytical methods to evaluate the impact of health policy and the health care delivery system on population health outcomes.
HAPPY Lab's Research Data Infrastructure: As of 2019, The HAPPY Lab became the first research team at UMD to develop a research data infrastructure to host Medicare claims data Research Identifiable Files (RIF) through funding provided by the National Institute on Aging (NIA). Utilizing this data infrastructure, we will be able to comprehensively assess health needs and the impact of care coordination using longitudinal records of members of the aging population who have developed ADRD or have had related risk factors.
The data infrastructure and policies we developed to host the CMS RIF are now available for others to use. In the long run, we hope the CMS data infrastructure can provide a unique platform and create opportunities for our faculty and students to develop interesting and fundable projects. Please contact us if you would like to collaborate on related projects!
Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions or would like to explore a potential collaboration
University of Maryland School of Public Health
4200 Valley Dr #2242, College Park, MD 20742
Phone: (301) 405-9053
View a gallery of our lab photos
- 1R01AG062315-01A1 (Chen, PI) 03/01/2021-2/28/2024
Effect of Hospital and Community Care Coordination on Health Care Quality and Equity among Individuals with Risk Factors or Diagnosis of ADRD
- R01MD011523 (Chen, PI) 07/12/2017-2/28/2023
Effects of Hospital-Community-Public Health Integration on Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Mental Health
- R56AG062315 (Chen, PI) 09/30/2018-2/28/2021
Pilot: Building the CMS Data Infrastructure to Examine the Effect of Hospital and Community Care Coordination on Health Care Access, Quality and Equity among Individuals with Risk Factors or Diagnosis of ADRD
- R01MD011523S1 (Chen, PI) 03/01/2019-2/28/2023
Explore the Impact of Hospital Payment Models and Care Coordination on ADRD Prevention and Treatment
- R01MD011523S2 (Chen, PI) 2019-2023
Using Health Information Technology to Improve Community Care Coordination and Reduce Racial Ethnic Mental Health Disparities, Diversity supplement, main investigator: Dr. Jackson
Effect of Hospital and Community Care Coordination on Health Care Access, Quality and Equity among Individuals with Risk Factors or Diagnosis of ADRD
Sponsor: NIH-National Institute of Aging
Co-Investigators: Andrew Fenelon, Minqi Wang, Charles Wang, Carson Smith, Luisa Franzini, Charles F. Reynolds III.
Disparity populations, in particular aging African Americans and Hispanics (65 years and older), are significantly more likely to have Alzheimer’s disease and related dementia (ADRD) than older Whites in the same age range. Lack of effective care management and access to timely primary care are considered as major factors that contribute to such disparities. Studies, including our own, have shown that care coordination among hospital and public health (e.g. chronic care management, post-hospital discharge continuity of care program) can improve health care quality and reduce racial and ethnic disparities. Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) have been proposed to promote such care coordination using a team-based approach and financial incentives. Investments in care coordination strategies and ACO models represent an important opportunity for improving care efficiency and equity, and population health. System-level care coordination strategies can be the most effective to promote continuity of care, ameliorate progression of co-morbid diseases among people with early stage ADRD, and reduce chronic disease progression among people with risk factors for ADRD; however, evidence is lacking.
The Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released Medicare Advantage data for the first time in April 2018, which provides a comprehensive view of care that provided to all Medicare beneficiaries. The availability of data and care coordination measures provided by the CMS offer an unprecedented opportunity to generate substantial amounts of new evidence on the impact of care coordination practices and innovative delivery models on the effective treatment and early detection among racial and ethnic minority Medicare populations with ADRD risk factors.
The objective of this project is to create a data infrastructure of linked Medicare fee for service and Medicare Advantage claims data, conduct feasibility tests of care coordination impact, and provide preliminary finding of the association between ACO model/care coordination practice and health care use for people with ADRD or risk factors for ADRD. We are particularly interested in understanding how care coordination/ACO can improve care quality among racial and ethnic minorities; and one of the hardest-to-reach populations: racial and ethnic minorities who receive federal housing assistance (through the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)) and may have experienced periods of homelessness. The HUD population includes a significant percentage of African Americans and Latinos; and majority of them have major risk factors for ADRD, such as diabetes, hypertension, and obesity; and face substantial barriers to accessing health care. Given their lack of health care resources, African Americans, Hispanics, and the hardest-to-reach HUD population who have multiple diagnosis or risk factors for ADRD may benefit more from system-level care coordination.
Improving care coordination is essential to meet the growing demand for ADRD treatment, while controlling costs and improving quality of service delivery. This study will provide the foundation to our future R01 project to identify the best care coordination practices that can improve effective management of ADRD and co-existing conditions, control/reduce modifiable risk factors of ADRD; and eventually promote population health and reduce health disparities.
System-level Multidisciplinary Integration for popuLation health and Equity (SMILE)
Mental illness is a major public health concern in the U.S. and a significant source of morbidity and mortality. Racial and ethnic minority patients experience disproportionate burdens of common physical health conditions associated with mental illness, largely due to the lack of health care access and social stigma. Effectively treating mental illness and the associated conditions will depend on a comprehensive approach that crosses health systems and policies, such as the Community Benefit State Laws, to target “Population Health” and emphasize the value of social determinants of health. However, the current mental health care system works in a silo, and evidence of care coordination on health disparities is lacking.
The objective of the project is to examine the current state of the extent and variation in integrated care coordination between hospitals, communities, and public health agencies (hospital-community- public health) among African American and Latino patients with mental illness and how these coordination practices impact racial and ethnic disparities in health.
Aim 1: Determine the effects of Community Benefit State Laws on racial and ethnic disparities in health care access, quality, and costs among people with mental illness.
Aim 2: Identify variations in hospital-based adoption of care coordination practices (medical services and community partnerships) and their correlation with patient and community level socio-demographics, local public health resources, and the extent of community benefit law implementation.
Aim 3: Determine the impact of care coordination practices between hospitals, communities, and public health agencies on racial and ethnic disparities in health care and health outcomes for people with mental illness.
Local Health Departments and Mental Health Care Disparities (LHD)
Evidence demonstrates the cost effectiveness of improving health care for patients with coexisting MHDs and other diseases through the integration of individual and organizational factors, yet there remains a gap in our knowledge about how to best accomplish the integration of Local Health Departments (LHDs) with the communities they serve. The objective of this study is to identify effective LHD activities that reduce racial and ethnic disparities in health care for individuals with MHDs, including those with MHDs and coexisting chronic diseases. Our central hypothesis is that LHDs’ service provision and health promotion can reduce disparities. Specifically, we assess the effect of LHD activities on health care for individuals with MHDs, and the effect of LHD activities on racial and ethnic disparities (African American vs. White; Latino vs. White) in mental health care. Given that MHDs are common comorbidities of major chronic diseases, we will assess the effect of LHD activities on racial and ethnic disparities in general health care for individuals with coexisting MHDs and other chronic diseases, such as diabetes and heart disease.
Results of this exploratory study will generate substantial amounts of new evidence and insights about how to utilize LHDs’ resources to integrate the care for individuals with MHDs, and to what extent the resources of LHDs can be used, or should be expanded, to improve mental health.
Notes: LHDs: Local Health Departments. The model is adapted from social ecological model (McLeroy et al. 1988, Stokols 1996), and the CDC Public Health Action Plan 2011.
Chen J, Bloodworth R, Novak P, Cook B, Howard G, Rendall M, Thomas S, and Reynolds C. Reducing Preventable Hospitalization and Disparity: Association with LHD Mental Health Promotion Activities. American Journal of Preventive Medicine. In Press.
Patient Activation and Empowerment Strategies (PAES)
Under the ongoing health care reform, activating and empowering patients in their own health and health care has become a priority for policy makers to improve the efficiency and quality of the health care delivery system. Evidence on effectiveness of patient activation and empowerment interventions, however, is limited. The long-term goal of this subproject is to develop culturally designed personalized interventions to activate and empower patients in their own health and health care. PCOR can only be optimized or truly patient-centered if the core of the research, patients, can actively participate in the treatments and take responsibilities for their own health. Designing culturally-sensitive personalized interventions will be critical to sustaining patients’ involvement in their treatment, develop patients’ abilities to manage their health, help patients to express concerns and preferences of the treatment, empower patients to ask questions about treatment options, and build up strategic patient-physician partnership through shared decision making. This research project is designed to provide a comprehensive assessment of patient activation and empowerment strategies (PAES) for diverse patient populations, including racial and ethnic minorities. It provides direct evidence for our further research, i.e., developing personalized PAES. To achieve this, we propose a patient-centered multi-level activation and empowerment framework. Based on this framework, we will carry out quantitative secondary data analysis and focus group interviews to achieve three specific aims:
Aim 1: To assess how patient activation and empowerment varies by patients’ characteristics (age, gender, race/ethnicity, immigrant status, chronic diseases, or other health conditions), physician-patient relationship (communication, physician patient language concordance, trust), community characteristics (social support, neighborhood, local health department) and the health care system (health care access, insurance).
Aim 2: To identify effective PAES for patients with different characteristics, such as demographic and social economic status, health conditions, and cultural backgrounds. We are particularly interested in identifying and quantifying strategies that can activate and empower patients with culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds and strategies that can reduce health disparities among different racial and ethnic groups.
Aim 3: To elicit barriers of activating and empowering patients via focus group interviews with diverse patient groups, physicians, and local health department representatives.
Chen J, Mullins D, Novak P, Thomas S. Personalized Strategies to Activate and Empower Patients in Health Care and Reduce Health Disparities. Health Education & Behavior 2016; 43(1): 25-34.
5R01MD010255-03 (Slade, PI)
Sponsor: Maryland Health Care Commission
Final Report: Health Matters: Navigating an Enhanced Rural Health Model for Maryland
University of Maryland, Tier 1 seed grant (Passmore, PI)
07/01/2013 – 06/30/2017
Sponsor: Maryland Department of Health & Mental Hygiene and the Community Health Resources Commission
Jie Chen, PhD, is a Professor in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the School of Public Health, the University of Maryland at College Park. Dr. Chen’s research fields include health care disparities, health care delivery system and policy, behavioral health, aging, and Alzheimer's disease and related dementias. Her work uses a multidisciplinary perspective and involves collaboration with clinical leaders, community partners, and organizational decision-makers. Her current research focuses on the integration of healthcare organizations, promoting behavioral health of vulnerable populations and mental health among older adults. Dr. Chen is also interested to study the impact of health policy initiatives and changing economic conditions on health care access, utilization, and health disparities. An additional field of her research involves economic evaluation, including cost-effectiveness and cost-benefit analysis of community intervention and state/federal policies. Dr. Chen has more than fifteen years of research experience developing, refining, and applying analytical methods to evaluate the impact of health policy and the health care delivery system on population health outcomes.
David Marcozzi, MD, MHS-CL, FACEP, a Fellow of the American College of Emergency Physicians, Dr. David Marcozzi is a Professor and the Director of Population Health within the Department of Emergency Medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. He also serves as a Co-Director of the Program in Health Disparities and Population Health in the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, University of Maryland School of Medicine, and is the Assistant Chief Medical Officer for Acute Care at the University of Maryland Medical Center. Prior to these roles, Dr. Marcozzi served in the federal government as a senior leader and subject matter expert on health delivery, emergency care, and emergency preparedness.
Michel Boudreaux, PhD, is an Associate Professor in the Department of Health Services Administration in the School of Public Health, University of Maryland. Dr. Boudreaux conducts research in interrelated areas of health policy. He is especially interested in publicly financed health programs for low-income populations and how they affect the evolution of health, human capital and socioeconomic position across the life-course. He also maintains an active research agenda focused on improving the quality and usability of health insurance measures collected in federal surveys. His work has appeared in Health Affairs, Health Services Research, Journal of Health Economics, Medical Care, Medical Care Research and Review, and other outlets. He received a PhD (2014) in Health Services Research, Policy, and Administration from the University of Minnesota.
Howard H. Goldman, MD, PhD, is a Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. Dr. Goldman received joint M.D. - M.P.H. degrees from Harvard University in 1974 and a Ph.D. in social policy research from the Heller School at Brandeis University in 1978. He is a mental health services researcher, currently active in studies on the organization and financing of mental health services. He is the author or co-author of 325 publications in the professional literature. From 2004 – 2016 Dr. Goldman was the editor of Psychiatric Services, a mental health services research and policy journal published monthly by the American Psychiatric Association. He has been on the editorial boards of several other journals, including the American Journal of Psychiatry, Health Affairs, and the Journal of Mental Health Policy and Economics. Dr. Goldman directed the MacArthur Foundation Network on Mental Health Policy Research for a decade ending in 2009. He served as the Senior Scientific Editor of the Surgeon General's Report on Mental Health from 1997-1999 for which he was awarded the Surgeon General’s Medallion. During 2002 and 2003 Dr.Goldman was a consultant to the President’s New Freedom Commission on Mental Health. In 1996 he was elected to membership in the National Academy of Social Insurance, and in 2002 he was elected to the Institute of Medicine. Since 2009 he has chaired a standing committee of the National Academy of Science, Engineering, and Medicine providing advice on medical disability to the Social Security Administration.
Luisa Franzini, PhD, is Professor and Chair of the Health Policy and Management Department, School of Public Health, University of Maryland, College Park. Her research interests focus on health care costs, health policy innovations in Maryland, and health disparities. During the last 20 years, a major component of Fr. Franzini’s research and teaching activities has focused on the application of economics and econometrics to investigating the causes and consequences of disparities in health and health care delivery in vulnerable populations. She brings extensive experience in cost and cost-effectiveness analysis and a commitment to improving healthcare access and quality for vulnerable populations, including chronically ill patients and high-risk children on Medicaid. Her research on health disparities addresses the pathways through which socioeconomic disparities affect health, including trust, cultural factors, religion, policies to reduce disparities, healthcare disparities, and disparities in parenting and academic achievement.
Stephen B. Thomas, PhD, is the Principal Investigator on the Center of Excellence in Race, Ethnicity and Health Disparities Research, funded by the National Institute for Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD). Dr. Thomas has received numerous awards and for his professional accomplishments, and over the years, his work has become recognized as one of the scholarly contributions leading to the 1997 Presidential Apology to Survivors of the Syphilis Study Done at Tuskegee. His current research focuses on the translation of evidence-based science on chronic disease into community-based interventions designed to eliminate racial and ethnic disparities in health and health care. More specifically, he has focused on understanding how social context shapes attitudes and behaviors of underserved, poorly served, and never-served segments of our society toward participation in health promotion and disease prevention activities. Dr. Thomas is particularly interested in how the legacy of the Syphilis Study at Tuskegee (1932–72) has impacted trust and influenced the willingness of African Americans to participate in medical and public health research.
Susan Racine Passmore, PhD, is a Senior Scientiest and Collaborative Center for Health Equity (CCHE) Assistant Director for Commuinty Engaged Research at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Prior to this, she was an Assistant Research Professor with the Department of Health Services Administration and Assistant Director for the Maryland Center for Health Equity (M-CHE). Dr. Passmore is a medical anthropologist with much experience in qualitative data collection and analysis on a range of health disparities. She has worked extensively with vulnerable populations including Latinos, African Americans and immigrant groups. Through the Center for Health Equity, Dr. Passmore has served as Project Director on several NIH grants for the Maryland Center for Health Equity (M-CHE), School of Public Health, University of Maryland. These include “Building Trust between Minorities and Researchers” (7RC2MD004766, Quinn and Thomas Joint PI); Research Center for Excellence in Minority Health Disparities (RCEMHD) (PG60MD000207, Thomas & Quinn Joint PI); and the Center of Excellence on Race, Ethnicity, and Health Disparities Research (P20MD006737, Thomas & Quinn Joint PI). Prior to joining the University of Maryland, College Park, Dr. Passmore's work included research on breast cancer, COPD, colorectal cancer and eye health working with faculty at the University of Maryland, Baltimore, School of Medicine. She has also worked to understand the needs of aging populations along the US/Mexican border in a previous position with the University of Texas at El Paso.
Charles F. Reynolds III, MD, is the Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry (emeritus) at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and, in addition, serves as Editor-in- Chief of the American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. Prior to July 2017, Dr. Reynolds served as the UPMC Endowed Professor in Geriatric Psychiatry, Professor of Behavioral and Community Health Sciences at the Pitt Graduate School of Public Health, Director of the Aging Institute of the UPMC and University of Pittsburgh, the NIMH-sponsored Center of Excellence in the Prevention and Treatment of Late Life Mood Disorders, and the John A. Hartford Center of Excellence in Geriatric Psychiatry. Dr. Reynolds is internationally renowned in the field of geriatric psychiatry. His primary research interests focus on mood, grief, and sleep disorders of later life, with a particular focus on mental health services in primary care, improving treatment strategies, depression prevention, and promotion of brain health in older adults. Dr. Reynolds was the 2016 recipient of the Pardes Humanitarian Prize in Mental Health awarded by the Brain & Behavior Research Foundation for his groundbreaking contributions to the prevention and treatment of depression in older adults. Also in 2016, Dr. Reynolds was elected to the Association of American Physicians for his pioneering work as a physician-scientist in geriatric psychiatry and the prevention and treatment of late-life depression.
Min Qi Wang, PhD, is a professor in the Department of Behavioral and Community Health, School of Public Health (SPH), the University of Maryland at College Park (UMD). He has authored and co-authored on over 240 publications in referred journals. Dr. Wang has obtained over 90 grants over his career. He has extensive experience in applying information technology to public health, which has been his focus for the past 15 years. Currently, he the UMD PI to develop the Maryland Environmental Public Health Tracking Network (EPHTN).
Priscilla Novak, MPH, PhD, received her PhD from the Department of Health Policy and Management within the School of Public Health. Her current research focus is on racial and ethnic disparities among people with serious psychological distress and chronic physical conditions. Her research examines access to care and the uneven burden of mental and physical health problems among racial/ethnic minority and socioeconomically disadvantaged groups. Major themes center on addressing underutilization of evidence-based treatments in low-income groups, even when insured. She is driven by action- oriented research with clear implications for social and health policy.
Deanna Barath, MPH, is a doctoral student in the University of Maryland’s Health Policy and Management Department. Her interests are in increasing health equity for vulnerable populations through community- and evidence-based interventions and policy. She is part of the second cohort of Health Policy Research Scholars, a program led by George Washington University with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Most recently, Deanna served as the project coordinator for a rural health community assessment in Maryland, researched veteran health insurance choices, and worked on research linking local health promotion activities to readmission rates. Before choosing to continue her education, Deanna worked at the Florida Department of Health overseeing department-wide efforts related to quality improvement, policy development and improved integration, particularly for endeavors to improve the health of children, provided guidance to local health departments on the “Mobilizing for Action through Planning and Partnerships” process, and the state’s integrate approach to accreditation. She also worked on Florida State University’s Masters in Public Health Program accreditation, which is where her affinity for performance management began, and lead the team that propelled the tobacco-free campus policy into fruition. Deanna received her Master of Public Health and Bachelors in Exercise Science from Florida State University, achieved a Six Sigma Green Belt certification from the Florida Sterling Council, and is a trained facilitator.
Ivy Benjenk, RN, MPH, is a PhD student in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the School of Public Health, University of Maryland at College Park. Prior to beginning the PhD program, Ms. Benjenk worked as a quality improvement professional at the George Washington University Hospital in Washington D.C. and Lutheran Medical Center in Brooklyn, New York. Prior to that, she worked as an inpatient psychiatric nurse at McLean Hospital in Massachusetts and Binghamton General Hospital in upstate New York. Ms. Benjenk is currently a clinical instructor of psychiatric nursing at the George Washington University. Her research interests are in hospital-based quality improvement and patient safety with a specific focus on inpatient psychiatric care.
Aitalohi (Aita) Amaize, MPH, BSN, RN, CEN, SANE-A, is a PhD candidate in the Department of Health Policy and Management at University of Maryland-College Park's School of Public Health. Her research interests are in health service delivery systems and utilization / access specifically in vulnerable populations that face challenges related to social determinants of health. Other areas of interest are coordination of care, care transitions, use of technology to enhance care management across the care continuum, primary care (particularly health centers), workforce issues (particularly nursing and lay professionals), behavioral health integration, population health, and health system transformation. Prior to joining the HAPPY Lab, Aita worked as the RN Clinical Program Manager for the Transition of Care Program at Unity Health Care, Inc., Washington DC's largest Federally-Qualified Health Center. In that position, she led a multi-disciplinary team of Registered Nurses, Community Health Workers, and Case Managers to implement an intensive care management program targeting high hospital utilizers. In 2017, she was part of the National Council for Behavioral Health's Addressing Health Disparities Leadership Program, and was awarded a UMD All-S.T.A.R. fellowship for her work on a rural health assessment of Mid-Shore Maryland communities. She is a former emergency department and forensic nurse with a passion for bettering the conditions of underserved and hypermarginalized populations. She has worked with under-insured women in New York City, homeless persons in Boston, children in The Philippines, and survivors of sexual and intimate-partner violence in D.C. She holds a BA in Psychology from Princeton University (with certificates in Neuroscience and African-American Studies) and an MPH from The Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health (with certificates in Health Communications and Health Disparities). She received her BSN from The Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing as a second-degree NURSE Corps and New Careers in Nursing (NCIN) scholar.
Yang Wang, MS, is a PhD student in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the School of Public Health. His research interests include health economics, health services usage, health disparities, and health outcomes. He has conducted research on drug use/dependence as it relates to health insurance coverage and mental health service use as it associates with health insurance.
Asmaa Albaroudi, MSG, is a doctoral student in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the University of Maryland, College Park. Ms. Albaroudi's research focus includes aging and long-term care. She is currently the Manager of Quality and Policy Initiatives at the National PACE Association. Ms. Albaroudi received a MS in Gerontology and a BS in Human Development and Aging from the University of Southern California.
Dr. Devlon N. Jackson is trained as a health communication scientist whose research examines how digital health tools can improve the health of vulnerable populations. Specifically, she assesses this work at the consumer- and provider-level by exploring how consumers access and use these tools within and outside of the clinical setting, and how providers use these tools to improve care. Her research also identifies communication inequalities that exist and inhibit consumers and providers from accessing and using these tools. Additionally, Dr. Jackson understands that one’s mental health can greatly impact physical wellness; therefore her research also includes assessing how digital health can support mental health wellness comprehensively. As a result, she was recently awarded an Investigator Diversity Research Supplement grant from the NIH-National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities. Her grant, “Using Health Information Technology to Improve Community Care Coordination and Reduce Racial Ethnic Mental Health Disparities” builds upon and extends the research aims of the parent R01 grant to Dr. Jie Chen, Effects of Hospital-Community-Public Health Integration on Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Mental Health. Health information technology presents an opportunity to enhance care coordination between hospitals and behavioral healthcare providers but the inequity in resources to support HIT implementation between these two health sectors creates challenges. Consequently, communities of color are more likely than their white counterparts to suffer from mental illness and physical chronic health conditions. This grant assesses how HIT can improve the mental and physical wellness of African American and Hispanic communities. Her research interests are in: digital Health, health information seeking, communication inequalities, trust in sources and channels, communities of color, vulnerable populations, health disparities, and health equity.
Alyse Messafi is an undergraduate student majoring in Public Health Science on the pre-med track at the University of Maryland College Park. Ms. Messafi has a specific interest in the integration of public health and medicine. Her internship experience has focused on care coordination among minority populations as well as linking emergency services with primary care providers to grant a continuum of care for substance disorder patients.
Portia Buchongo, MPH, BSN, RN is a PhD candidate in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the University of Maryland College Park. Her research interest includes primary care delivery, integrated care models, value-based healthcare delivery models and their impact on healthcare quality, access, and utilization. Other areas of interest include the use of integrated care models to promote cross-sector partnerships, specifically community-clinical linkages to improve health outcomes for populations with multiple chronic conditions and behavioral health integration. Prior to starting the PhD program, Portia served as the Hypertension and Diabetes Program Manager at the Georgia Department of Public Health, where she was responsible for the implementation of statewide public health nurse protocols, promoted the use of team-based care and evidence-based strategies for prevention and control of diabetes and hypertension. Prior to this, she was an Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education Fellow at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, where she was responsible for program evaluation and served on the State Innovation Model workgroup to provide technical assistance to states developing strategies to improve population health. She has been a registered nurse for over 10 years, with most of her clinical experience in critical care settings. She holds a BSN from Virginia Commonwealth University and MPH in Epidemiology from Georgia State University.
Merianne Rose T. Spencer, MPH, is a doctoral student from the University of Maryland’s Health Policy and Management Department in the School of Public Health. Her research activities presently focus on opioid use/drug poisoning and other injuries, mental health issues, population health using administrative data/EHR/health information technology, and patient-centered outcomes research. She is currently an epidemiologist at the National Center for Health Statistics, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (NCHS/CDC), where her work activities include publishing population health statistics on health disparities in injury (e.g., poisoning, suicide, motor vehicle traffic), serving as a subject matter expert using NCHS data for injury research, and supporting data science methods development for identifying and classifying causes of death. Prior to her work at NCHS/CDC, Merianne worked in the private sector focusing on health services research, healthcare utilization, cost of hospital services and comparative effectiveness research. She obtained her Master’s in Public Health in Epidemiology from George Washington University, and her B.S. Biological Sciences (Physiology/Neurobiology) and B.S. Psychology from the University of Maryland, College Park.
Selected studies on health care coordination, HIT, health disparities, ADRD, and health policy in the past three years:
Chen J, Spencer M*, Buchongo P*, Wang M. Evidence of hospital-based HIT infrastructure and reduced Medicare payment and racial and ethnic disparities among ADRD patients. Medical Care. In Press.
Wang Y*, Chen J. Reducing Racial Disparities in Preventable Emergency Department Visits through Hospital Health Information Technology Patient Engagement Functionalities. Telemedicine and e-Health. In Press.
Albaroudi A*, Chen J. Racial Disparities in Measures of Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems among ADRD Patients. JAMA Network Open. 2022;5(9):e2233436. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2022.33436.
Wang Y*, Buchongo P*, Chen J. Rural and Urban Disparities in Potentially Preventable Hospitalizations among Patients with ADRD – Evidence of Hospital-based HIT and Enabling Services. Preventive Medicine. 2022 Oct;163:107223. doi: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2022.107223. Epub 2022 Aug 23. PMID: 36027993.
Chen J, Buchongo P*, Spencer M*, Charles Reynolds. An HIT-Supported Care Coordination Framework for Reducing Structural Racism and Discrimination for ADRD Patients. The American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. Published: May 05, 2022. DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jagp.2022.04.010.
Ortega AN, Chen J, Roby DH, Mortensen K, Rivera-González AC, Bustamante AV. Changes in Coverage and Cost-Related Delays in Care for Latino Individuals After Elimination of the Affordable Care Act’s Individual Mandate. JAMA Netw Open. 2022;5(3):e221476. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.
Spencer M*, Chen J. Addressing Mental Health Care Delivery in the Era of the COVID-19 Pandemic: Understanding Alternative Payment Models for Helping Patients with Complex Medical Needs. American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. Available online 22 September 2021.
Benjenk I*, Chen, J. Exploring the unmet needs facing individuals with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias during the COVID-19 pandemic. Alzheimer's and Dementia 2021; 17: e053380. https://doi.org/10.1002/alz.053380
Benjenk I*, Franzini L, Roby D, Chen J. Disparities in Audio-only Telemedicine Use among Medicare Beneficiaries during the COVID-19 pandemic. Medical Care. In Press.
Wang Y*, Albaroudi A*, Benjenk I*, Chen J. Exploring Hospital-Based Health Information Technology Functions for Patients with Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias. Preventive Medicine Reports. 2021 (23) 101459.
Benjenk, I*, Saliba Z, Duggal N, Albaroudi A*, Posada J, Chen J. Impacts of COVID-19 Mitigation Efforts on Adults with Serious Mental Illness: A Patient-Centered Perspective. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease. June 2021.
Bustamante A, Chen J, Felix L, Ortega A. Health Policy Challenges Posed By Shifting Demographics And Health Trends Among Immigrants To The United States. Health Affairs. 2021 40:7, 1028-1037.
Chen J, Benjenk I*, Anderson A*, Barath D*, Reynold C. Accountable Care Organizations and of Preventable Hospitalization among Patients with Alzheimer’s Diseases. American Journal of Preventive Medicine. March 2021.
Benitez J, Perez V, Chen J. Did Medicaid Slow Health Declines During the Great Recession? Health Services Research. First published: 03 March 2021.
Mortensen K, Dean E, Wang Y*, Chen J, French M. Trends in Health Care Utilization and Spending in the United States across Five Decades: 1977 – 2017. Medical Care. 2021 May 3. doi: 10.1097/MLR.0000000000001557. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 33935253.
Park S, Chen J, Ma G, Ortega A. Inequities in Access to Care and Health Care Spending for Asian Americans With Cancer. Medical Care. March 2021.
Chen J, Amaize A*, Barath D*. Evaluating Telehealth Adoption and Related Barriers Among Hospitals Located in Rural and Urban Areas. Journal of Rural Health. First published: 12 November 2020. https://onlinelibrary-wiley-com.proxy-um.researchport.umd.edu/doi/10.1111/jrh.12534
Park S, Chen J. Racial and Ethnic Patterns and Differences in Health Care Expenditures among Medicare Beneficiaries with and without Cognitive Limitation or Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias: A Retrospective Cohort Study. BMC Geriatrics. 20, Article number: 482. 2020.
Novak P, Sanmartin M, Ali M, Chen J. Individuals with Serious Mental Illness are more Likely to have Health Conditions Associated with Severe Illness from COVID-19. Psychiatric Services. Published Online:19 Nov 2020 https://doi.org/10.1176/appi.ps.202000300
Chu*, Benjenk I*, Chen J. Incremental Medical Expenditures of the Spouses of Individuals with Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias. American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. 2020 Sep 30 doi: 10.1016/j.jagp.2020.09.020 [Epub ahead of print].
Wang N*, Amaize A*, Chen J. Hospital ACO Affiliation and Urban/Rural Disparities in Preventable ED Rates for Patients with ADRD. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. 2020 Oct 7. doi: 10.1111/jgs.16858. Online ahead of print.
Benjenk I*, Chen J. Trends in Self-Payment for Outpatient Psychiatrist Visits. JAMA Psychiatry. Published online July 15, 2020. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2020.2072.
Wang N*, Albaroudi A*, Chen J. Decomposing Urban and Rural Disparities of Preventable ED Visits among Community-dwelling Patients' with Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias --- Evidence of the Availability of Health Care Resources. Journal of Rural Health. First published: 02 July 2020 https://doi.org/10.1111/jrh.12465.
Benjenk I*, Shields M, Chen J. Measures of Care Coordination at Inpatient Psychiatric Facilities and the Medicare 30-Day All-Cause Readmission Rate. Psychiatric Services. Published Online: 25 Aug 2020. https://doi.org/10.1176/appi.ps.201900360.
Barath D*, Amaize A*, Chen J. Racial and Ethnic Disparities of Potentially Preventable Hospitalizations among Patients with Depression – Evidence on Accountable Care Organizations and Care Coordination. American Journal of Preventive Medicine. April 2020.
Alberto C*, Martinez-Donate A, Pintor J, Chen J, Ortega A. Health Care Access and Utilization for Latino Youth in the United States: The Role of Maternal Citizenship and Distress. Medical Care. 2020; 58(6): 541-548.
Benjenk I*, Franzini L, Chen J. Evidence of the Linkage between Hospital-based Care Coordination Strategies and Hospital Overall (Star) Ratings. Medical Care. 2020; 58(1):18-26.
Park S, Chen J, Roby D, Ortega A. Differences in Health Care Expenditures Among Non-Latino Whites and Asian Subgroups Vary Along the Distribution of the Expenditures. Medical Care Research and Review. 2019;1077558719874212. doi:10.1177/1077558719874212.
Park S, Roby DH, Kemmick Pintor J, Stimpson JP, Chen J, McKenna RM, Ortega AN. Insurance Coverage and Health Care Utilization among Asian American Children before and after the Affordable Care Act. Academic Pediatrics. 2019 Nov 13. pii: S1876-2859(19)30454-1.
Barath D*, Chen J. Integrating Local Health Departments to Reduce Suicide-Related Emergency Department Visits among People with Substance Use Disorders. Preventive Medicine. 2019 Dec;129:105825. doi: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2019.105825.
Novak P*, Chu J*, Ali M, Chen J. Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Serious Psychological Distress among those with Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias. American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. 2019 Aug 15. pii: S1064-7481(19)30473-7.
Park S, Chen J, Ma G, Ortega A. Utilization of Essential Preventive Health Services among Asians after the Implementation of the Preventive Services Provisions of the Affordable Care Act. Preventive Medicine Reports. 2019;16:101008. Published 2019 Nov 6. doi:10.1016/j.pmedr.2019.101008.
Sanmartin M, Ali M, Chen J, Dwyer D. Prescription Opioid Misuse, Sources of Opioids and Reasons for Opioid Misuse among Reproductive Aged Parenting Women with Major Depressive Episode. Addictive Behaviors. 2019; 98:106057.
Park S, Stimpson JP, Kemmick Pintor J, Roby DH, McKenna RM, Chen J, Ortega AN. The Impact of the Affordable Care Act on Health Care Access and Utilization among Asian American Subgroups. Medical Care. 2019; 57(11):861-868.
Mallow P, Chen J, Moore M, Gunnarsson C, Rizzo J. Incremental Direct Healthcare Expenditures of Valvular Heart Disease in the United States. Journal of Comparative Effectiveness Research. 2019; 8(11):879-887.
Anderson A*, Chen J. ACO Affiliated Hospitals Increase Implementation of Care Coordination Strategies. Medical Care. 2019;57(4):300-304. doi: 10.1097/MLR.0000000000001080.
Benjenk I*, Chen J. Variation of Follow-Up Rate after Psychiatric Hospitalization by Hospital Characteristics and Social Determinants of Health. The American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. 2019; 27(2):138-148.
Anderson A*, Akre E*, Chen J. Exploring National Trends of Patient and Family Centered Care among US Children. Journal of Child Health Care. 2019; 23(2): 200-212.
Novak P*, Chen J, Ali M. Health Care Access among Adults with Chronic Conditions and Co-Occurring Serious Psychological Distress. Medical Research Archives. 2019; 7(7). doi: https://doi.org/10.18103/mra.v7i7.1947.
Novak P*, Bloodworth R*, Green K, Chen J. Local Health Department Activities to Reduce Emergency Department Visits for Substance Use Disorders. Journal for Healthcare Quality. 2019; 41(3): 134-145.
Sanmartin M, Ali M, Chen J, Dwyer D. Mental Health Treatment and Unmet Mental Health Care Need among Pregnant Women with Major Depressive Episode in the U.S. Psychiatric Services. Published Online:10 Apr 2019 https://doi.org/10.1176/appi.ps.201800433.
Novak P*, Feder K, Ali M, Chen J. Behavioral Health Treatment Utilization among Individuals with Co-Occurring Opioid Use Disorder and Mental Illness: Evidence from A National Survey. Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment. 2019 (98): 47-52.
Sanmartin M, Ali M, Novak P*, and Chen J. Sources and Main Motivations for Prescription Opioids Misuse among Reproductive-Aged Parenting Women in the United States. Substance Use and Misuse. 2019 Mar 12:1-5. doi: 10.1080/10826084.2019.1580294. [Epub ahead of print].
Vargas A, Chen J, McKenna R, Ortega A. Health Care Access and Utilization among U.S. Immigrants before and after the Affordable Care Act. Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health. 2019; 21(2): 211-218.
Sanmartin M, Ali M, Novak P*, Chen J. Polysubstance Use among Reproductive-Aged Parenting Women Who Misused Prescription Opioids in the United States. Journal of Addictive Diseases. 2019 Jun 24:1-4. doi: 10.1080/10550887.2019.1630237. [Epub ahead of print].
Linman S*, Benjenk I*, Chen J. The Medical Home Functions of Primary Care Practices That Care for Adults with Psychological Distress: A Cross-Sectional Study. BMC Health Services Research. 2019 (19): 21.
Kozhimannil K, Dowd B, Novak P*, Chen J, Ali M. Substance Use Disorder Treatment Admissions and State-Level Prenatal Substance Use Policies: Evidence from a National Treatment Database. Addictive Behaviors. 2019; 90:272-277.
Chen J, DuGoff E, Novak P*, Wang M. Variation of Hospital-Based Adoption of Care Coordination Services by Community-Level Social Determinants of Health. Health Care Management Review. 2018 Nov 27. doi: 10.1097/HMR.0000000000000232. [Epub ahead of print].
Benjenk I*, Buchongo P*, Amaize A*, Martinez S*, Chen J. Overcoming The Dual Stigma of Mental Illness and Aging: Preparing New Nurses to Care for The Mental Health Needs of Older Adults. The American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. Available online 27 December 2018.
Bloodworth R*, Chen J, Mortensen K. Variation of Preventive Service Utilization by State Medicaid Coverage, Cost-Sharing, and Medicaid Expansion Status. Preventive Medicine. 2018; 15:97-103.
Bustamante A, McKenna R, Viana J, Ortega A, Chen J. Access-To-Care Differences Between Mexican-Heritage And Other Latinos In California After The Affordable Care Act. Health Affairs. 2018; 37(9):1400-1408.
Benjenk I*, Chen J. Effective Mental Health Interventions to Reduce Hospital Readmission Rates: A Systematic Review. Journal of Hospital Management and Health Policy. 2018. doi: 10.21037/jhmhp.2018.08.05. Epub 2018 Sep 12.
Kemmick J, Chen J, Alcalá H, Langellier B, McKenna R, Roby D, Ortega A. Insurance Coverage and Utilization Improve for Latino Youth but Disparities by Heritage Group Persist Following the ACA. Medical Care. 2018; 56(11):927-933.
Jackson D, Passmore S, Fryer C, Chen J, Kleinman D, Horowitz A, Butler J, Garza M, Quinn S, Thomas S. Mission of Mercy Emergency Dental Clinics: An Opportunity to Promote General and Oral Health. BMC Public Health. 2018; 18:878.
Novak P*, Anderson A*, Chen J. Changes in Health Insurance Coverage and Barriers to Health Care Access among Individuals with Serious Psychological Distress following the Affordable Care Act. Administration and Policy in Mental Health and Mental Health Services Research. 2018; 45(6): 924-932.
Chen JC*, Green KM, Chen J, Hoke K, Borzekowski DLG. Restricting the Sale of Flavored E-cigarettes in the U.S.: An Examination of Local Regulations. Tobacco Regulatory Science 2018; 4(4):32-40.
Chen J, Novak P*, Goldman H. Public Health System Delivered Mental Health Preventive Care Links to Significant Reduction of Health Care Costs. Population Health Management. 2018; 21(6): 462-468.
Hu T, Mortensen K, Chen J. Medicaid Managed Care in Florida and Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Preventable Emergency Department Visits. Medical Care. 2018; 56(6):477-483.
Demarco M, Carter-Pokras O, Hyun N, Castle P, He X, Dallal C, Chen J, Gage J, Befano B, Fetterman B, Lorey T, Poitras N, Raine-Bennett T, Wentzensen N, Schiffman M. Validation of an HPV DNA Cervical Screening Test That Provides Expanded HPV Typing. Journal of Clinical Microbiology. 2018; 56 (5): e01910-17.
Chen J, Novak P*, Barath D*, Goldman H, Mortenson K. Local Health Departments' Promotion of Mental Health Care and Reductions in 30-Day All-Cause Readmission Rates in Maryland. Medical Care. 2018; 56(2):153-161.
Vargas-Bustamante A, Chen J. Lower Barriers to Primary Care after the Implementation of the Affordable Care Act. Pan American Journal of Public Health. 2018; 42: e106.
Chen J, Bloodworth R*, Novak P*, Cook B, Goldman H, Rendall M, Thomas S, and Reynolds C. Reducing Preventable Hospitalization and Disparity: Association with LHD Mental Health Promotion Activities. American Journal of Preventive Medicine. 2018; 54(1):103-112.
Nair S*, Chen J. Improving Quality of Care in Federally Qualified Health Centers through Ambulatory Care Accreditation. Journal for Healthcare Quality. 2018; 40(5):301-309.
Ortega A, McKenna R, Chen J, Alcalá H, Langellier B, Roby D. Insurance Coverage and Well-Child Visits Improved for Youth Under the Affordable Care Act, but Latino Youth Still Lag Behind. Academic Pediatrics. 2018; 18(1):35-42.
Rizzo J, Chen J, Laurich C, Santos A, Martinsen B, Ryan M, Gunnarsson C. Racial Disparities in PAD Related Amputation Rates among Native Americans and Non-Hispanic Whites: Analysis of Health Care Cost and Utilization Project Database. Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved. 2018; 29(2):782-800.
See current and upcoming HAPPY Lab news and events
The HAPPY Lab is recruiting for 2 studies!
Deanna Barath successfully defended her dissertation proposal: Hospital Cross-Sector Partnerships for Population Health
- Chen J, Spencer M*, Buchongo P*, Wang M. Evidence of hospital-based HIT infrastructure and reduced Medicare payment and racial and ethnic disparities among ADRD patients. Medical Care. In Press.
- Wang Y*, Chen J. Reducing Racial Disparities in Preventable Emergency Department Visits through Hospital Health Information Technology Patient Engagement Functionalities. Telemedicine and e-Health. In Press.
- Albaroudi A*, Chen J. Racial Disparities in Measures of Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems among ADRD Patients. JAMA Network Open. 2022;5(9):e2233436. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2022.33436.
- Wang Y*, Buchongo P*, Chen J. Rural and Urban Disparities in Potentially Preventable Hospitalizations among Patients with ADRD – Evidence of Hospital-based HIT and Enabling Services. Preventive Medicine. 2022 Oct;163:107223. doi: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2022.107223. Epub 2022 Aug 23. PMID: 36027993.
- Chen J, Buchongo P*, Spencer M*, Charles Reynolds. An HIT-Supported Care Coordination Framework for Reducing Structural Racism and Discrimination for ADRD Patients. The American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. Published: May 05, 2022
- Ortega AN, Chen J, Roby DH, Mortensen K, Rivera-González AC, Bustamante AV. Changes in Coverage and Cost-Related Delays in Care for Latino Individuals After Elimination of the Affordable Care Act’s Individual Mandate. JAMA Netw Open. 2022;5(3):e221476.
- Spencer M*, Chen J. Addressing Mental Health Care Delivery in the Era of the COVID-19 Pandemic: Understanding Alternative Payment Models for Helping Patients with Complex Medical Needs. American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. DOI: 10.1016/j.jagp.2021.09.005
- Benjenk I*, Chen, J. Exploring the unmet needs facing individuals with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias during the COVID-19 pandemic. Alzheimer's and Dementia 2021; 17: e053380.
- HAPPY lab: Wang Y*, Chen J. Decreasing Racial Disparities in Preventable Emergency Department Visits through Hospital Health Information Technology Patient Engagement Functionalities. 2022 Annual Research Meeting, June 4-7 in Washington, DC. HIT interest group. Oral presentation, and the 2022 Conference on Health IT and Analytics (CHITA).
- HAPPY lab: Spencer M*, Novak P, Ali M, Chen J. Understanding the Impact of the Affordable Care Act on Health Expenditures Among Adults with Serious Psychological Distress. 2022 Annual Research Meeting, June 4-7 in Washington, DC.
- HAPPY lab: Wang Y*, Buchongo P*, Chen J. Rural/Urban Disparities in PQIs Among ADRD Patients – Evidence of Hospital-Based HIT and Enabling Services”, has been accepted for poster presentation at the 2022 Annual Research Meeting, June 4-7 in Washington, DC.
- HAPPY lab: Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Measures of Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems among ADRD Patients. Alzheimer’s Association International Conference. July 31 – August 4, 2022. Poster presentation. San Diego, USA.
- HAPPY lab: Evidence of Hospital-Based HIT Infrastructure and Reduced Medicare Payment and Racial and Ethnic Disparities among ADRD Patients. Alzheimer’s Association International Conference. July 31 – August 4, 2022. Poster presentation. San Diego, USA.
- HAPPY lab: An HIT-supported care coordination framework for reducing structural racism and discrimination for patients with ADRD. Alzheimer’s Association International Conference: Addressing Health Disparities Related to Alzheimer's & Other Dementias. Washington, D.C. June 21 -22, 2022.
Aita received the AHRA R36 award on her dissertation: Understanding Frequent EMS Users in D.C. Health Care System: Evidence from Medicaid Claims Data. Congratulations!
Congratulations, Dr. Benjenk! Ivy successfully defended her dissertation: Mental Health and Mental Health Services During the COVID-19 Pandemic.
Benjenk I, Franzini L, Roby D, Chen J. Disparities in Audio-only Telemedicine Use among Medicare Beneficiaries during the COVID-19 pandemic. Medical Care. In Press.
Wang Y, Albaroudi A, Benjenk I, Chen J. Exploring Hospital-Based Health Information Technology Functions for Patients with Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias. Preventive Medicine Reports. 2021 (23) 101459.
Bustamante A, Chen J, Felix L, Ortega A. Health Policy Challenges Posed By Shifting Demographics And Health Trends Among Immigrants To The United States. Health Affairs. 2021 40:7, 1028-1037.
Welcome to the HAPPY lab, Portia, Merianne, and Shurooq!
Aita Amaize won the 2021 Dr. Mabel S. Spencer Award for Excellence in Graduate Achievement, University of Maryland, and 2021 Gliner Humor Scholarship
Ivy Benjenk won the 2021 Learneveryday Award
Asmaa Albaroudi won the 2021 Seabury Aging Research Fellowship
Dr. Chen won the Leda Amic Wilson Mentoring Award!
- Chen J, Benjenk I*, Anderson A*, Barath D*, Reynold C. Accountable Care Organizations and of Preventable Hospitalization among Patients with Alzheimer’s Diseases. American Journal of Preventive Medicine. March 2021.
- Sungchul P, Chen J, Ma G, Ortega A. Differences in Health Care Expenditures between Asians and Non-Latino Whites with Cancer in the United States: Evidence from 1997-2015 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey. Medical Care. In Press.
A keynote by Dr. Christopher King, a PhD alumnus from our Department of Health Policy and Management who is associate professor and chair of the Department of Health Systems Administration at Georgetown University.
Ivy Benjenk successfully defended her dissertation proposal: Exploring the Physical and Social Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Individuals with Mental Illness.
- Chen J, Amaize A, Barath D. Evaluating Telehealth Adoption and Related Barriers Among Hospitals Located in Rural and Urban Areas. Journal of Rural Health. In Press.
- Chu J, Benjenk I, Chen J. Incremental Medical Expenditures of the Spouses of Individuals with Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias. American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. In Press.
- Park S, Chen J. Racial and Ethnic Patterns and Differences in Health Care Expenditures among Medicare Beneficiaries with and without Cognitive Limitation or Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias: A Retrospective Cohort Study. BMC Geriatrics. In Press.
- Wang N, Amaize A, and Chen J. Hospital ACO Affiliation and Urban/Rural Disparities in Preventable ED Rates for Patients with ADRD. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. In Press.
Asmaa Albaroudi: Health and Aging Policy Fellowship, US Congress, Senate Special Committee on Aging.
- Individuals with Serious Mental Illness are more Likely to have Health Conditions Associated with Severe Illness from COVID-19.
Authors: Novak P, Sanmartin M, Ali M, Chen J.
Journal/Date: Psychiatric Services. In Press.
- HAPPY lab: Chen J, et al. Accountable Care Organizations and Racial and Ethnic Disparities among Patients with Alzheimer’s and Related Dementia Diseases. Alzheimer’s Association International Conference. 2020. Virtual presentation.
- HAPPY lab: Wang Y, Amaize A, Chen J. The Association between ACO Affiliation and Urban and Rural Disparities of Preventable ED Visits Among Patients with Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias. AcademyHealth. 2020. Virtual presentation.
- HAPPY Lab: Chen J, Benjenk I, Anderson A, Barath D, Reynold C. Disparities in Preventable Hospitalization among Patients with Alzheimer’s Diseases. AcademyHealth. 2020. Poster presentation.
Deanna Barath: Health Policy Research Scholars Dissertation Award, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
- We Don’t Accept Insurance: Trends in Self-Payment for Outpatient Psychiatric Visits.
Authors: Benjenk I, Chen J.
Journal/Date: JAMA Psychiatry. In Press.
CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield Endowed Graduate Scholarship: Ivy Benjenk
Kaiser Permanente Endowed Scholarship: Deanna Barath
Seabury Aging Research Fellowship: Nianyang Wang
Outstanding Service Award: Aitalohi Amaize
- Decomposing Urban and Rural Disparities of Preventable ED Visits among Community-dwelling Patients' with Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias --- Evidence of the Availability of Health Care Resources.
Authors: Wang N, Albaroudi A, Chen J. Journal/Date: Journal of Rural Health. In Press.
- Exploring the Association between “30-Day All-Cause Unplanned Readmission after Psychiatric Hospitalization” Rates and Inpatient Psychiatric Facility Care Coordination Measures.
Authors: Benjenk I, Shields M, Chen J.
Journal/Date: Psychiatric Services. In Press.
Deanna Barath successfully defended her dissertation proposal: Improve Population Health through Hospital and Community Partnership on March 12, 2020; Congratulations!
- Local health departments and COVID-19
Authors: Priscilla Novack, Deanna Barath, Ivy Benjenk, Jie Chen.
Journal/Date: The Medical Care Blog, the official blog of the peer-reviewed journal Medical Care, sponsored by the Medical Care Section of the American Public Health Association. March 26, 2020.
→ Presentation: Big Data in Public Health: Integrating Hospital-Community to Reduce Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Health Care, by Jie Chen. School of Public Health, UMD. 2/27/2020 (Slides Available Here)
Deanna Barath won the first place in the TedTalk category at the University of System of Maryland’s graduate symposium for her presentation on cross-sector partnerships (Feb 21, 2020). Congratulations!
→ Publications: Racial and Ethnic Disparities of Potentially Preventable Hospitalizations among Patients with Depression – Evidence on Accountable Care Organizations and Care Coordination.
Authors: Barath D, Amaize A, Chen J.
Journal/Date: American Journal of Preventive Medicine. Available Online 23 April 2020.
→ Publication: Evidence of the Linkage Between Hospital-based Care Coordination Strategies and Hospital Overall (Star) Ratings.
Authors: Benjenk I, Franzini L, Chen J.
Journal/Date: Medical Care. 2020 Jan;58(1):18-26. doi: 10.1097/MLR.0000000000001226.
1996- 2019 (updated annually)
The Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS) is a set of large-scale surveys of families and individuals, their medical providers, and employers across the United States.
- Full-Year Consolidated Data files
- Medical Conditions files
- Prescribed Medicines files
- Dental Visits files
- Other Medical Expenses files
- Hospital Inpatient Stays files
- Emergency Room Visits files
- Outpatient Visits files
- Office-Based Medical Provider Visits files
- Home Health files
1997 - 2019
The National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) has monitored the health of the nation since 1957. NHIS data on a broad range of health topics are collected through personal household interviews. For over 50 years, the U.S. Census Bureau has been the data collection agent for the National Health Interview Survey. Survey results have been instrumental in providing data to track health status, health care access, and progress toward achieving national health objectives.
Family file, person file, adult file, child file;
Cancer file, Alternative Medicine file
The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) is a program of studies designed to assess the health and nutritional status of adults and children in the United States. The survey is unique in that it combines interviews and physical examinations.
The Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP) is a family of databases and related software tools and products developed through a Federal-State-Industry partnership and sponsored by AHRQ. HCUP databases are derived from administrative data and contain encounter-level, clinical and nonclinical information including all- listed diagnoses and procedures, discharge status, patient demographics, and charges for all patients, regardless of payer (e.g., Medicare, Medicaid, private insurance, uninsured), beginning in 1988. These databases enable research on a broad range of health policy issues, including cost and quality of health services, medical practice patterns, access to health care programs, and outcomes of treatments at the national, State, and local market levels.
National Readmission Database (NRD)
The National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey (NHAMCS) is designed to collect data on the utilization and provision of ambulatory care services in hospital emergency and outpatient departments. Findings are based on a national sample of visits to the emergency departments and outpatient departments of noninstitutional general and short-stay hospitals.
To monitor state-level prevalence of the major behavioral risks among adults associated with premature morbidity and mortality.
The Current Population Survey (CPS), sponsored jointly by the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), is the primary source of labor force statistics for the population of the United States. The CPS is the source of numerous high-profile economic statistics, including the national unemployment rate, and provides data on a wide range of issues relating to employment and earnings. The CPS also collects extensive demographic data that complement and enhance our understanding of labor market conditions in the nation overall, among many different population groups, in the states and in substate areas.
The study began in 1968 with a nationally representative sample of over 18,000 individuals living in 5,000 families in the United States. Information on these individuals and their descendants has been collected continuously, including data covering employment, income, wealth, expenditures, health, marriage, childbearing, child development, philanthropy, education, and numerous other topics. The PSID is directed by faculty at the University of Michigan, and the data are available on this website without cost to researchers and analysts.
Longitudinal panel study that surveys a representative sample of more than 26,000 Americans over the age of 50 every two years.
The National Survey of Children’s Health (NSCH) touches on multiple, intersecting aspects of children’s lives. The survey includes physical and mental health status, access to quality health care, as well as information on the child’s family, neighborhood and social context.
The National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health) is a longitudinal study of a nationally representative sample of adolescents in grades 7-12 in the United States during the 1994-95 school year. The Add Health cohort has been followed into young adulthood with four in-home interviews, the most recent in 2008, when the sample was aged 24-32. Add Health combines longitudinal survey data on respondents’ social, economic, psychological and physical well-being with contextual data on the family, neighborhood, community, school, friendships, peer groups, and romantic relationships, providing unique opportunities to study how social environments and behaviors in adolescence are linked to health and achievement outcomes in young adulthood. The fourth wave of interviews expanded the collection of biological data in Add Health to understand the social, behavioral, and biological linkages in health trajectories as the Add Health cohort ages through adulthood.
an annual survey of the civilian, noninstitutionalized population of the United States aged 12 years old or older. Both the report and detailed tables present national estimates of the prevalence of past year mental disorders and past year mental health service utilization for youths aged 12 to 17 and adults aged 18 or older. Among adults, estimates presented include rates and numbers of persons with any mental illness (AMI), serious mental illness (SMI), suicidal thoughts and behavior, major depressive episode (MDE), treatment for depression (among adults with MDE), and mental health service utilization.
The American Time Use Survey (ATUS) measures the amount of time people spend doing various activities, such as paid work, childcare, volunteering, and socializing.
American Hospital Association Surveys
“The MCBS Survey File public use file (MCBS PUF) provides a publically available MCBS file for researchers interested in the health, health care use, access to and satisfaction with care for Medicare beneficiaries, while providing the very highest degree of protection to the Medicare beneficiaries’ protected health information. The MCBS PUF is prepared from data collected from community dwelling Medicare beneficiaries and contains standard demographic variables, such as age categories, race/ethnicity and gender, as well as information about health conditions, access to and satisfaction with care, type of insurance coverage, and information on utilization, such as the number of fee-for-service claims per beneficiary for certain health care event types. The MCBS PUF is available free for download, along with its accompanying documentation here on the MCBS PUF page. This file is released approximately 3 months after the MCBS Survey File is available.”
MCBS Survey File
MCBS Cost Supplement File
“NEDSS helps connect the healthcare system to public health departments and those health departments to CDC by
Providing leadership and resources to state and local health departments to adopt standards-based systems needed to support national disease surveillance strategy;
Defining the content (i.e., disease diagnosis, risk factor information, lab confirmation results, and patient demographics) of messages sent using the HL7 messaging standard;
Implementing content standards that the healthcare industry currently uses (for example, LOINC as the standard for transmitting laboratory test names and SNOMED as the standard for transmitting test results) for increased interoperability between public health departments and the healthcare industry; and
Providing the NEDSS Base System (NBS), a CDC-developed information system, to help reporting jurisdictions manage reportable disease data and send notifiable diseases data to CDC. For more information about NBS, please access the NBS web site.
“Since NACCHO conducts this survey regularly, Profile data can provide a clear picture of how LHD infrastructure, partnerships, and programs have changed over time. For example, since 2008 an estimated 43,000 LHD employees have been lost from the workforce, representing 22% of the LHD workforce in 2008. Additionally, the percent of LHDs reporting formal partnerships with healthcare, community-based, and government partners decreased between 2008 and 2016.
New Profile data also show that a larger proportion of LHDs provide population-based programs and services and a smaller proportion provide clinical services compared to 2008. In addition, LHD participation in community health assessments, community health improvement plans, and strategic plans within the past five years (a requirement for Public Health Accreditation) has increased over time, from 20% completing all three processes in 2010 to 44% completing all three in 2016.
The Profile is a critical resource for NACCHO, policymakers, LHDs, and researchers. To be a credible and effective national voice for LHDs, NACCHO needs up-to-date information about them. NACCHO staff use Profile data to educate congressional and agency staff about how LHDs improve and protect health in communities and about the challenges LHDs face. Local and state health departments use Profile data to compare their agency or agencies within their states to others nationwide. Universities use Profile data to educate the future public health workforce about LHDs and to conduct research about the relationship between public health infrastructure and community health outcomes. Profile data also helps highlight challenges faced by LHDs and differences between small, medium and large LHD”
Geographic Variation and State Policy
For more than 20 years, the Dartmouth Atlas Project has documented glaring variations in how medical resources are distributed and used in the United States. The project uses Medicare data to provide information and analysis about national, regional, and local markets, as well as hospitals and their affiliated physicians. This research has helped policymakers, the media, health care analysts and others improve their understanding of our health care system and forms the foundation for many of the ongoing efforts to improve health and health systems across America
This data collection reflects Medicaid benefits covered in each state, limitations applied to those benefits, cost- sharing charges, and the reimbursement methodologies used for those benefits.
The American Community Survey (ACS) is an ongoing survey that provides data every year -- giving communities the current information they need to plan investments and services. Information from the survey generates data that help determine how more than $400 billion in federal and state funds are distributed each year.
The HRSA Data Warehouse (HDW) serves as the enterprise repository for HRSA data. The data warehouse integrates this data with external information and data sources, enabling users to gather relevant and meaningful information about health care programs and the populations they serve.
The data warehouse allows users to explore, interact with, and export data through charts, maps, reports, analyzer and locator tools, data downloads and data services, and widgets.
The HDW is used by the public, HRSA professionals, grantees, health care providers and other audiences interested in HRSA’s public health services and information.
The UDS Mapper: 2017 Uniform Data System (UDS): https://www.udsmapper.org/
Claims Data Sets
Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results Program Turning Cancer Data Into Discovery
Health Care Cost Institute
The Maryland Medical Care Data Base (MCDB)
Most of the data sets (not RIF claims data) are online or can be downloaded at http://www.icpsr.umich.edu/icpsrweb/landing.jsp
New data sets for Aging research
- National Study of Caregiving
- National Health and Aging Trends Study
- Outcome and Assessment Information Set