RWJF Health Policy Fellows have unique opportunity to influence health reform

August 3rd, 2009
Ten exceptional health professionals have been selected as Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Policy Fellows for 2009-2010. The ten fellows will utilize their wide range of academic, public health, clinical and community-based experience to provide health policy leadership on Capitol Hill to improve health and health care.

Each year, fellows are selected through a competitive selection process. They leave their academic settings and professional practices to spend a year in the nation's capital. A three-month orientation program is followed by a nine-month assignment in which fellows work in a congressional office or the executive branch. Work assignments are supplemented throughout the year with health policy leadership development activities and media training.

"This is a particularly remarkable year to contribute much-needed practical knowledge of health and health care to Washington, D.C. Our fellows will have the chance to impact health reform directly," said Michael Painter, J.D., M.D., RWJF senior program officer and 2003-2004 Robert Wood Johnson Health Policy Fellow. "The 'hands-on' health and health care experience of our fellows provides a critical perspective to the reform debate."

In September, following the one-year experience, fellows can choose to extend their Washington stay past the fellowship period through the end of the legislative session. Once they've completed the program, fellows return to their respective institutions or take another appropriate position where they further develop their health policy leadership skills. They become part of a nationwide alumni network and typically return to Washington yearly to attend the Institute of Medicine's annual meeting and get an update on issues and trends in health and health care policy.

Over 200 fellows from universities, colleges and other health-related organizations across the nation have participated since 1973. The following fellows have been selected for the 2009-2010 program:

  • Andrew Bindman, M.D., professor of medicine, health policy, epidemiology and biostatistics at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) and director of the California Medicaid Research Institute.
  • Gustavo D. Cruz, D.M.D., M.P.H., associate professor and director of public health and health promotion in the Department of Epidemiology and Health Promotion at the New York University (NYU) College of Dentistry.
  • Sheldon D. Fields, Ph.D., R.N., F.N.P.-B.C., associate professor of Nursing at the University of Rochester Medical Center School of Nursing.
  • David Keller, M.D., clinical associate professor of pediatrics at the University of Massachusetts (UMass) Medical School.
  • Janet E. Leigh, B.D.S., D.M.D., professor and chairman of oral medicine and radiology at Louisiana State University (LSU) Health Sciences Center.
  • Gregg Margolis, Ph.D., associate director of the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT).
  • Mark D. Schwartz, M.D., associate professor of medicine at New York University (NYU) School of Medicine.
  • Barbara Tobias, M.D., associate professor of family medicine and director of the Predoctoral Division and the Family Medicine Clerkship in the Department of Family Medicine at the University Of Cincinnati College Of Medicine.
  • Margaret C. Wilmoth, Ph.D., M.S.S., R.N., professor of nursing at the University of North Carolina, Charlotte.
  • Shale L. Wong, M.D., M.S.P.H., pediatrician and associate professor at the University of Colorado, School of Medicine.

Source: Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

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