Philip R. Lee Institute for Health Policy Studies

In Memoriam: Philip R. Lee
April 17, 1924 - October 27, 2020
Joanne Spetz Selected as New IHPS Director!
We are pleased to announce the appointment of Joanne Spetz, PhD, as the new director of the Philip R. Lee Institute for Health Policy Studies (IHPS). Please join us in welcoming Joanne as the new director!
Current COVID-19 Related Research and Initiatives
IHPS faculty are responding to policy challenges raised by the COVID-19
 pandemic with rapid-cycle research and technical assistance.
National Clinician Scholars Program
Based at UCSF’s Philip R. Lee Institute for Health Policy Studies, the National Clinician Scholars Program (NCSP) at UCSF aims to train the next generation of health and healthcare change agents, prepared to work in diverse settings.

Welcome Joanne Spetz, New IHPS Director!

Joanne SpetzWe are pleased to announce the appointment of Joanne Spetz, PhD, as the new director of the Philip R. Lee Institute for Health Policy Studies (IHPS), effective November 1, 2020. She has also been appointed as the Caldwell B. Esselstyn Chair and will be the inaugural holder of the Claire D. and Ralph G. Brindis Endowed Professorship. 

Dr. Spetz joined the faculty at UCSF in 1999 and is the Brenda and Jeffrey L. Kang Presidential Chair in Healthcare Finance at IHPS. She most recently served as the Associate Director for Research at IHPS and at Healthforce Center at UCSF, and holds faculty appointments in the Department of Family and Community Medicine and in the School of Nursing. 

Dr. Spetz received her PhD in economics from Stanford University after studying economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, specializing in the economics of the health care workforce, and the organization and quality of health care services. She has conducted studies of the registered nurse, nurse practitioner, and long-term care workforces and has conducted surveys for the California Board of Registered Nursing for more than a decade. She also has led research on the effects of health information technology on staff and patients, and policies that affect use of and treatment for illicit drugs.

Over the past decade, Dr. Spetz has played a role in the leadership of the Healthforce Center and in committee service at IHPS, with a focus on building research collaborations for both organizations. Bringing together core faculty, she led a process to improve collaboration, strategically pursue grants, and grow research capacity. 

In addition to her focused research, Dr. Spetz has taken on extensive mentoring and teaching responsibilities in the areas of health economics, quantitative research methods, health care financial management, and health economics. Her teaching spans three interdisciplinary programs: the Master’s in Translational Medicine (MTM) program, which is a joint program of UCSF and UC-Berkeley’s Bioengineering departments, the online MS in Health Administration and Interprofessional Leadership (MS-HAIL), and the MS in Health Policy and Law programs. She serves on the dissertation committees of nursing and public health students at UCSF, UC- Berkeley, and UC-Davis. 

Dr. Spetz was a member of the National Academy of Sciences Committee on Consideration of Generational Issues in Workforce Management and Employment Practices, the Institute of Medicine Standing Committee on Credentialing Research in Nursing, a consultant to the Institute of Medicine Committee on the Future of Nursing, and a member of the National Commission on VA Nursing. She is an honorary fellow of the American Academy of Nursing. 

Dr. Spetz’ commitment to serving California’s diverse population, in conjunction with her extensive experiences in leadership, research, and teaching, will be an asset in advancing the IHPS mission of translating research across disciplines and fields to inform health policy.

We express our deep appreciation to Claire Brindis, DrPH, who stepped down in July after 14 years as director of PRL-IHPS (including 3 years as acting/interim director), and also to Daniel Dohan, PhD, who has served in an interim capacity since that time. 


Meaningful Use And Medical Home Functionality In Primary Care Practice

Health Affairs Journal November 2020Diane R. Rittenhouse, James A. Wiley, Lars E. Peterson, Lawrence P. Casalino, and Robert L. Phillips

HealthAffairs. 
Published November, 2020

To improve health care quality and decrease costs, both the public and private sectors continue to make substantial investments in the transformation of primary care. Central to these efforts is the patient-centered medical home model (PCMH) and the adoption and meaningful use of health information technology (IT).  


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Understanding Experiences of Moral Distress in End-of-Life Care Among US and UK Physician Trainees: a Comparative Qualitative Study

Springer Journal November 2020Sarah Rosenwohl-Mack, Daniel Dohan, Thea Matthews, Jason Neil Batten, & Elizabeth Dzeng

Journal of General Internal Medicine. 
27 October 2020

Moral distress is a state in which a clinician cannot act in accordance with their ethical beliefs because of external constraints. Physician trainees, who work within rigid hierarchies and who lack clinical experience, are particularly vulnerable to moral distress. We examined the dynamics of physician trainee moral distress in end-of-life care by comparing experiences in two different national cultures and healthcare systems.

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Race/ethnicity association with COVID‐19 outcomes in rheumatic disease: Data from the COVID‐19 Global Rheumatology Alliance Physician Registry

A and R Journal November 2020Milena A. Gianfrancesco, Liza A. Leykina, Zara Izadi, Tiffany Taylor, Jeffrey A. Sparks, Carly Harrison, Laura Trupin, Stephanie Rush, Gabriela Schmajuk, Patricia Katz,  et al.

Arthritis and Rheumatology. 
03 November 2020

Racial/ethnic minorities experience more severe outcomes of COVID‐19 in the general United States (US) population. The aim of this study was to examine the association between race/ethnicity and COVID‐19 hospitalization, ventilation status, and mortality in people with rheumatic disease.

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