The Commonwealth Fund — among the first private foundations started by a woman philanthropist, Anna M. Harkness — was established in 1918 with the broad charge to enhance the common good. Today, the mission of the Commonwealth Fund is to promote a high-performing health care system in the United States that achieves better access, improved quality, and greater efficiency, particularly for society’s most vulnerable, including low-income people, the uninsured, and people of color.  

The Commonwealth Fund values diversity and is committed to the recruitment and retention of underrepresented minorities.

Open positions:

 


 

SENIOR RESEARCH ASSOCIATE (Health Care Delivery System Reform)

THE ORGANIZATION

The Commonwealth Fund — among the first private foundations started by a woman philanthropist, Anna M. Harkness — was established in 1918 with the broad charge to enhance the common good. Today, the mission of the Commonwealth Fund is to promote a high-performing health care system that achieves better access, improved quality, and greater efficiency, particularly for society’s most vulnerable, including low-income people, the uninsured, and people of color. The Fund carries out this mandate by supporting independent research on health care issues and making grants to improve health care practice and policy. An international program in health policy is designed to stimulate innovative policies and practices in the United States and other industrialized countries.

THE PROGRAM ON HEALTH CARE DELIVERY SYSTEM REFORM

Health care in the United States is often compromised by fragmentation in the delivery of services, uneven quality of care, pervasive inequities, patients’ limited access to care, and spiraling health care costs. The Commonwealth Fund’s Health Care Delivery System Reform (DSR) program aims to improve quality of care, increase affordability and advance equity, particularly for people who have a lot of complex health and social needs. To achieve its goals, the program focuses on three strategies:

  • Understanding the needs of target populations and the gaps in the system to meet those needs;
  • Identify, assess and spread evidence-based models, programs, and practices to improve care for the target populations; and
  • Promote payment reform and policy improvements to facilitate spread and scale of evidence-based approaches that fill the gaps in the system and meet the needs of target populations.

SUMMARY POSITION DESCRIPTION

The Senior Research Associate is the staff member responsible for providing research and writing support, and program management for the Health Care Delivery System Reform program and on delivery system reform issues. The Senior Research Associate reports directly to the Senior Vice President (SVP) for Delivery System Reform and International Innovations and will work collaboratively with the Vice President for Health Equity, and the Program Officer, High-Need, High-Cost Portfolio. There is also an opportunity to work with other programs that overlap with Delivery System reform, such as Advancing Medicare and Controlling Health Care Costs. The position includes a variety of responsibilities, including writing, editing and research responsibilities, and some program-wide coordination and management.

SPECIFIC RESPONSIBILITIES

Research, Writing and Analysis (70%)

  • Provides research and writing support for Fund publications. This work includes cleaning data and leading statistical analysis, preparing tables and charts, outlining and co-authoring Fund briefs or blog posts, and helping to create other public-facing products for the Fund website or social media. 
  • Provides support on questionnaire development for Commonwealth Fund surveys that relate to delivery system reform. Depending on the survey, this will require coordinating input from colleagues and experts inside and outside the foundation. 
  • Conducts data analysis and compiles information from the peer-reviewed literature, grantee reports, and other studies, in support of writing and speaking commitments by team. Synthesizes results from multiple grants and published literature for blog posts, social media, or products or publications for the Fund website.
  • May be called upon to attend meetings and manage the presentation process, including drafting slide presentations.
  • Conducts background research as requested by the DSR team, including literature reviews, web searches, and tracking journals, working papers, legislative developments and public coverage of health policy issues. In addition, secures reports from federal and private sources

Coordination of Delivery System Reform Team (10%)

The Senior Research Associate supports the SVP with management and tracking, including:

  • Tracking staff publications across the program;
  • Tracking program budgets and coordinating the Delivery System report program assistants in the proposal development activities;
  • Convening weekly program team meetings, developing the agenda and organizing materials;
  • Facilitating communication and coordination across the program’s portfolios and across Fund programs (DSR, International Health Policy Program, Medicare, Medicaid, Cost Control, Federal and State Health Policy, etc.)
  • Prepares materials, slides, and charts for internal meetings, including the annual program plan meetings (a.k.a, annual strategic review and plan for the program), communication updates to the Board, project briefing meetings, and proposal review meetings.

Grants Management (20%)

  • Manages proposal development for a few delivery system reform grants, particularly for research projects (e.g., DSR survey projects, focus group grants). This includes assisting with the development of grant proposals and budgets; preparation of project summaries for proposal review meetings; communicating with potential grantees; scheduling grantee meetings; and conducting background research on the proposal topics.
  • Oversees grants management for the few projects for which the SRA is responsible, including preparation of payment and review schedules, and letters of agreement; tracking of program and grantee products, including papers and conferences, and scheduling grant payments accordingly.
  • Drafts detailed summaries of project accomplishments and challenges at the conclusion of each grant’s active period.
  • Corresponds with current and prospective grantees, consultants, and experts reviewing proposed projects; assembles and provides materials on Fund programs, projects, and other activities as requested by grantees and other individuals.

The Fund’s philosophy on successful performance in the job includes the willingness on the part of all staff members to handle any assignment necessary to further the goals of the institution. We are looking for someone who is a team player and flexible, as well as organized and detail-oriented. Responsibilities may include taking on projects for other program areas or departments that related to delivery system reform, if the need arises.

CORE COMPETENCIES AND QUALIFICATIONS

The candidate must have a master’s degree (MS, MPH, MPA) in a field related to health services research or health policy and at least three years of relevant work experience. The position requires a strong background in writing, statistical data analysis using STATA, SAS or other statistical software.  Candidates must also have a working knowledge of health care delivery and policy issues relevant to the care of high-need and/or vulnerable populations.  Experience in survey design and methodology is preferable. Experience with qualitative methods is preferable.

Applicants should demonstrate strong health policy, economic and research analytical skills, including competence in the use of quantitative data. Excellent oral and written communication skills will include the ability to write about and discuss complex issues. Strong coordination and project management skills are needed, as well as concern for details and accuracy. As someone working with multiple people on the DSR team, the ability to set priorities and work with a minimum of supervision are attributes associated with success. Computer skills: experience with statistical software analysis, facility with Internet searches, word processing, spreadsheets, and graphical presentations.  Excellent interpersonal skills: capable of being a team member as well as a team leader and a willingness to participate in general workflow of office.

The Fund has a relatively small staff, and judgment, integrity, and the ability to listen with sensitivity to others are traits that are particularly important in an organization of the Fund’s size, where teamwork is essential to effectiveness. The ability to work collegially with a variety of Fund staff and interest in and strong commitment to the Fund’s mission and grants programs are key qualifications.

COMPENSATION

Commensurate with background and experience. The Fund provides an excellent benefits package.

HOW TO APPLY

Please send a cover letter (including salary expectations) and resume with the subject line Sr. Research Associate – [Your Name] to: [email protected].

Employment at the Commonwealth Fund is based upon personal capabilities and qualifications without discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, sexual preference, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, medical condition, disability, or any other protected characteristic as established by law.


RESEARCHER (International Health Policy and Practice Innovations)

THE ORGANIZATION

The Commonwealth Fund — among the first private foundations started by a woman philanthropist, Anna M. Harkness — was established in 1918 with the broad charge to enhance the common good. Today, the mission of the Commonwealth Fund is to promote a high-performing health care system that achieves better access, improved quality, and greater efficiency, particularly for society’s most vulnerable, including low-income people, the uninsured, and people of color. The Fund carries out this mandate by supporting independent research on health care issues and making grants to improve health care practice and policy. An international program in health policy is designed to stimulate innovative policies and practices in the United States and other industrialized countries.

THE PROGRAM ON INTERNATIONAL HEALTH POLICY AND PRACTICE INNOVATIONS

The Commonwealth Fund’s International Health Policy and Practice Innovations program seeks to improve people’s lives by serving as a trusted source for international insights that spur change to the U.S. health care system. We inspire U.S. health care leaders to act by generating research and analysis on international policies and practices that address common health care problems and promote a high-performing healthcare system. The Harkness Fellowship helps to achieve this goal by cultivating a network of international leaders and experts to inform our work. Key activities include:

  • Surveying the public, patients, and physicians in 11 countries to compare health system performance annually (International Health Policy Survey)
  • Benchmarking U.S. performance compared to 11 countries on indicators in five domains: Care Process, Access, Administrative Efficiency, Equity, and Health Care Outcomes (Mirror, Mirror)
  • Commissioning research on health care in other countries that can inform U.S. efforts to improve access, quality, and efficiency, including universal coverage
  • Identifying and disseminating information about health care delivery system innovations abroad that might also work in the U.S. and working with U.S. delivery systems to pilot the most promising models, such as comprehensive primary care, mental health, and drug pricing
  • Sponsoring the Harkness Fellowships in Health Policy and Practice, which enable promising international health care leaders to spend 12 months in the U.S. conducting policy-oriented research.

SUMMARY POSITION DESCRIPTION

The Researcher reports to the Vice President, International Health Policy and Practice Innovations. He/she/they is the member of the International Team who will lead international comparative research projects to fulfill the International Program’s primary objective and research agenda – to understand and analyze international health policy and practice to glean insights for improving health care in the U.S. The primary responsibility of the Researcher is to lead research and analytics for the Commonwealth Fund’s annual International Health Policy Survey and recurring international benchmarking analysis, with the potential to propose new studies and metrics.

With guidance from the Vice President, the Researcher is responsible for managing the day-to-day activities of the program’s survey and benchmarking initiatives including organizing and providing input on questionnaire development, ensuring data integrity, communicating with the survey research firms, using statistical software to analyze data, and displaying data in tables and charts. The Researcher will participate as part of Fund staff research teams in writing reports, issue briefs, blogs, and journal articles based on survey findings. In addition, responsibilities will include making presentations to the media and at public and professional meetings.

SPECIFIC RESPONSIBILITIES

International Program Research (60%)

  • Manages large, complex research projects and ensures quality, relevance, and technical excellence across the Commonwealth Fund’s international health portfolio and findings. Two key activities include the International Health Policy Survey and the recurring Mirror, Mirror international benchmarking analysis.
  • Manages and coordinates input from multiple countries on research including survey (e.g., questionnaire development); collaboration with researchers/experts on methods (e.g. Mirror, Mirror).
  • Writes reports, issue briefs, journal articles, and blogs based on survey findings and outside publications, including in peer-reviewed journals.
  • Develops and maintains a robust international research agenda (intramural and extramural) and supports the generation of timely and relevant analysis that informs policy and practice. Generating evidence and learning that will advance policy decision-making and identify promising strategies and interventions that could be adopted in the U.S. is of vital importance.
  • Works with other international organizations and programs to identify area of mutual interest, research and dissemination of research finding.
  • Tracks, maintains, and builds ongoing knowledgebase on the literature, policy environment, and industry trends related to international health policy that is relevant to the U.S.
  • Conducts background research on international health access and delivery issues, including literature reviews.
  • Monitors journals, working papers, OECD, WHO and other international developments, survey reports, and other information related to the program area.

Research Dissemination (20%)

  • Supports dissemination of International Program’s research and work through articles in peer-reviewed journals, gray literature publications, conference papers, blog posts, social media, and other dissemination channels.
  • Participates in key conferences and other forums, as well as expert groups and advisory committees, engages with key players in the international health sector, keeps abreast of critical trends, and shares the Fund’s work where it is most useful.
  • Represents the Commonwealth Fund in meetings with other organizations focused on international health research.
  • Liaises with members of international research organizations like OECD, WHO and individual countries health ministries and researches institutes to understand and support research activities.

International Program Activities (10%)

  • Assists in the development of policy relevant, and methodologically sound grant projects for the international program. Conducts background research and literature reviews to support grant review; reviews proposals for design and methodology, prepares summaries for review and approval by the Board of Directors.
  • Contributes to the International Team in managing grants; maintains knowledge of work related to grants, including publications.
  • Assures high quality, policy relevant Fund publications based on grantee and staff work. Critiques grantee and staff papers submitted for Fund publication; participates in the final review, prepares executive summaries, and issues briefs based on grantee work, if necessary.
  • Supports the Vice President with additional responsibility for coordinating all activities within the program, including developing and maintaining the work plan, convening program team meetings and representing the program internally to the executive management team.
  • Manages a Research Associate and mentors and develops junior staff and advises leadership on talent needs.

Special Projects (10%)

  • Performs other duties as assigned.

CORE COMPETENCIES AND QUALIFICATIONS

The ideal candidate will have a master’s degree in health economics, health services research, health policy or relevant discipline, and a minimum of 5 years professional experience. Applicants should demonstrate strong international health policy, economic and research analytical skills, including competence in the use of quantitative data. The position requires a strong background in statistical data analysis using STATA or other statistical software. They should also have an established research record (contributions to peer-reviewed journals and gray literature publications and presentations at conferences and other expert forums).

Applicants should demonstrate strong coordination and project management skills, must be well organized with a concern for details, accuracy and deadlines, can set priorities and work with a minimum of supervision. Stellar written and verbal communication skills will include the ability to 1) convey complex technical issues to non-expert audiences and 2) present and share data and research results in a way that resonates with media, practitioners, and policymakers.

Candidates must have a strong working knowledge of the survey design and methodology and international data sources, like the OECD Health data, and a background in international health systems, with a focus on health insurance coverage, insurance markets, care delivery approaches, and drug pricing policy. Understanding of the international health landscape and a track record of engaging and maintaining international contacts at bilateral and multilateral agencies, foundations, and other countries.

The applicant should have effective supervisory skills and the ability to manage, mentor, and lead staff. Experience directly managing full-time, professional staff is desired. They should also be able to work under pressure and with tight deadlines in a fast-paced, but flexible work environment. Candidate should display excellent interpersonal skills; capable of being a team member as well as a team leader and have the willingness to participate in general workflow of the office as well as supervise staff.

The Fund has a relatively small staff and judgement, integrity, and the ability to listen with sensitivity to others are traits that are particularly important in an organization of the Fund’s size, where teamwork is essential to effectiveness. The ability to work collegially with a variety of Fund staff and interest in and strong commitment to the Fund’s mission and grants programs are key qualifications.

COMPENSATION

Commensurate with background and experience. The Fund provides an excellent benefits package.

HOW TO APPLY

Please send a cover letter (including salary expectations) and resume with the subject line Researcher (International) – [Your Name] to: [email protected].

Employment at the Commonwealth Fund is based upon personal capabilities and qualifications without discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, sexual preference, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, medical condition, disability, or any other protected characteristic as established by law.


 

PROGRAM OFFICER (Advancing Health Equity)

THE ORGANIZATION

The Commonwealth Fund — among the first private foundations started by a woman philanthropist, Anna M. Harkness — was established in 1918 with the broad charge to enhance the common good. Today, the mission of The Commonwealth Fund is to promote a high-performing health care system that achieves better access, improved quality, and greater efficiency, particularly for society’s most vulnerable, including low-income people, the uninsured, and people of color. The Fund carries out this mandate by supporting independent research on health care issues and making grants to improve health care practice and policy. An international program in health policy is designed to stimulate innovative policies and practices in the United States and other industrialized countries.

ADVANCING HEALTH EQUITY

The goal of the Advancing Health Equity program is to contribute to efforts to dismantle systemic racism in health care policy and practice and counter inequity in treatment, patient experience, and health outcomes for Black people, Indigenous people, and people of color. The program was launched in January 2021 to fulfill the goals of a new Health Equity Fund approved in July of the previous year.

The Advancing Health Equity program has three focus areas: 1) dismantling racism in care delivery, 2) using public policy to achieve equitable access, and 3) changing culture, beliefs, and attitudes.

THE POSITION

The Program Officer will report to the Vice President of Health System Equity who leads the Advancing Health Equity Program and will support the VP in coordinating the overall work and efficiency of the team to ensure goals and priorities are met.

Program Officer Duties

In close collaboration with the VP, the Program Officer will work in collaboration with the Advancing Health Equity team and specifically be responsible for:

  • Development/writing of program plans for the Health Equity portfolio. This responsibility includes evaluating opportunities in the field, synthesizing findings from the past year from all projects across a program area, assessing other foundations’ contributions to the program area, and assisting in the development of strategic options for the program for the year ahead.
  • Development of new projects in consultation with the VP, including identifying prospective grantees, working with prospective grantees to improve project design, collecting background information/research and conducting literature reviews, drafting summaries of proposed projects for review and approval by the Board of Directors, participation in internal proposal review meetings, and preparation of follow-up memoranda.
  • Management of grants in partnership with the program manager who oversees day-to-day operations of the program.  This includes tracking the current status of projects through ongoing contact with grantee principal investigators; reviewing grantee interim and final deliverables (e.g., interview protocols, survey instruments, preliminary data analysis, and papers/articles for publication); maintaining knowledge of work related to grants; and ensuring that grantees follow payment and reporting schedules.
  • Working closely with the program manager to support grants, events, and activities associated with the Commonwealth Fund Fellowship in Minority Health Policy at Harvard and the Pozen-Commonwealth Fund Fellowship in Health Equity at Yale.
  • Leading the day-to-day activities of the Health Equity program area and providing day-to-day guidance to the program manager to ensure successful management and impact of the Health Equity portfolio.
  • Preparing Completed Grant Memoranda on all assigned completed projects, which includes summarizing achievements, issues in implementation, and lessons learned for Fund grantmaking.
  • In consultation with the VP, developing briefing materials, policy briefs, and journal articles for publication by the Fund or outside publications.
  • With support from the VP and the VP for Organizational Effectiveness, Survey Research and Evaluation, the Program Officer will oversee the development of survey instruments, analysis of survey data, and the dissemination of survey results.
  • Preparing talks and presentations to disseminate the Fund’s work, particularly related to Advancing Health Equity.
  • Representing the Fund at meetings and conferences, as requested.
  • Working with other program staff on cross-cutting issues and other program areas as needed. This work may include participating in the internal review of equity-related publications for possible Fund publication from other Fund programs.
  • Working with Fund’s communications department in the presentation and dissemination of project findings to the media, social media, and other interested parties.

CORE COMPETENCIES & QUALIFICATIONS

Masters level education and five years of related work experience required. Applicants must have knowledge and experience working on issues to advance racial equity and ensuring positive health outcomes for Black people, Indigenous people, and people of color. Candidates will also have demonstrated health care services research and health care delivery experience particularly as it relates to people of color.  Preference will also be given to candidates who have grantmaking experience (e.g., prospecting and developing proposals, managing funded projects). The successful candidate will have excellent written and oral communication skills, as well as health care analytical skills including the ability to summarize and present information from different sources, including quantitative sources. This position requires strong coordination and project management abilities.

The Program Officer is expected to be well organized with concern for details, accuracy, and deadlines and will have the ability to set priorities and work with a minimum of supervision. Excellent interpersonal skills, working well on a team, and a willingness to participate in the general workflow of the office are all necessary attributes.

The Fund’s philosophy on successful performance in the job includes the willingness on the part of all staff members to handle any assignment necessary to further the goals of the institution.

LOCATION

Position is based in our NYC location. D.C. based candidates will be considered.

HOW TO APPLY

Please send cover letter (including salary expectations) and resume with the subject line Program Officer – [Your Name] to: [email protected].

COMPENSATION

Commensurate with background and experience. The Fund offers an excellent benefits package.

Employment at the Commonwealth Fund is based upon personal capabilities and qualifications without discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, sexual preference, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, medical condition, disability, or any other protected characteristic as established by law.


 

PROGRAM ASSISTANT (Delivery System Reform)

THE ORGANIZATION

The Commonwealth Fund — among the first private foundations started by a woman philanthropist, Anna M. Harkness — was established in 1918 with the broad charge to enhance the common good. Today, the mission of The Commonwealth Fund is to promote a high-performing health care system that achieves better access, improved quality, and greater efficiency, particularly for society’s most vulnerable, including low-income people, the uninsured, and people of color. The Fund carries out this mandate by supporting independent research on health care issues and making grants to improve health care practice and policy. An international program in health policy is designed to stimulate innovative policies and practices in the United States and other industrialized countries.

THE PROGRAM ON HEALTH CARE DELIVERY SYSTEM REFORM

Health care in the United States is often compromised by fragmentation in the delivery of services, uneven quality of care, pervasive inequities, patients’ limited access to care, and spiraling health care costs. The Commonwealth Fund’s Health Care Delivery System Reform (DSR) program aims to improve quality of care, increase affordability and advance equity, particularly for people who have a lot of complex health and social needs. To achieve its goals, the program focuses on three strategies:

  • Understanding the needs of target populations and the gaps in the system to meet those needs;
  • Identifying, assessing and spreading evidence-based models, programs, and practices to improve care for the target populations; and
  • Promoting payment reform and policy improvements to facilitate spread and scale of evidence-based approaches that fill the gaps in the system and meet the needs of target populations.

SUMMARY POSITION DESCRIPTION

The Program Assistant is the staff member responsible for providing the daily support for the Health Care Delivery System Reform program. The Program Assistant will perform a variety of duties including grants management, daily administrative tasks, proposal development, writing, editing, and the occasional research project.

SPECIFIC RESPONSIBILITIES

Grants Management (60%)

  • Manages all aspects of the grant process: preparation of summaries and materials, payment and reporting schedules, and letters of agreement; tracking of program and grantee products, including papers and presentations, and scheduling grant payments accordingly; helps plan meetings, forums or conferences related to grantee work, and helps to maintain overall Fund-grantee relationships. Responsible for streamlining grant tracking methods and communication between the program and grantees to ensure timeliness of reports and products.
  • Assists in the development of grant proposals and budgets and in the preparation of project summaries for board meetings three times a year. This involves communicating with potential grantees, conducting background research on the proposal topics, compiling and distributing proposal review materials to the executive management team and assisting in internal reviews of proposals.
  • Supports a 7 Foundation Collaborative which aims to improve health care for people with complex health and social needs. Responsibilities include setting the agenda for meetings, tracking co-funded investments and action items, distribution of key materials, and supporting scheduling and execution of meetings on behalf of the collaborative. This requires working closely with staff from other foundations.
  • Acts as a liaison with Communications to ensure the dissemination of grant products, including: coordinating the review of draft grantee publications by Fund staff and the promotion of grantee-published articles; drafting language for the Fund website that publicizes grantee work; developing web-based grant products for placement or promotion on the Fund website; reviewing and providing program updates to the Fund website as needed; coordinating with grantees and Communications staff to produce webinars, podcasts, and other multimedia to promote grantee work.

General Administrative Support (30%)

  • Provides administrative support for the Program Officer including: arranges appointments and scheduling of meetings, completing expense reports.
  • Prepares materials, slides, and charts for external meetings and presentations. This involves research and assembling materials and detailed information about projects in the program areas.
  • Prepares materials, slides, and charts for internal meetings, including project briefing meetings, and proposal review meetings.

Research and Analysis (10%)

  • Conducts background research in this Fund program area as needed by Program Officer, including literature reviews, Internet searches and tracking journals, working papers, legislative developments and public coverage of health policy issues. In addition, secures reports from Federal and private sources.
  • Occasionally attend virtual and/or in-person meetings, conferences, and webinars relevant to the Delivery System Reform Program.
  • Corresponds with current and prospective grantees, consultants, and experts reviewing proposed projects; assembles and provides materials on Fund program, projects, and other activities as requested by grantees and other individuals.
  • Occasionally provides research and writing support for Fund publications. This work includes: preparing tables and charts as well as drafting summaries of grantee or Fund reports.

The Fund’s philosophy on successful performance in the job includes the willingness on the part of all staff members to handle any assignment necessary to further the goals of the program and of the institution. This may include taking on responsibility for other program areas or departments if the need arises.

QUALIFICATIONS

College bachelor’s degree and at least one year of work experience preferred. Candidates must have demonstrated organizational, administrative, and relationship management skills along with strong writing and analytic skills. Candidate must be detail-oriented and have the ability to manage and work on multiple tasks and under deadlines. Experience scheduling meetings, travel, teleconference calls and assembling material within very tight time frames is required. Strong computer skills are required, including knowledge of the Microsoft Office suite of products. Familiarity with the SalesForce.com platform and/or knowledge of delivery system reform issues (e.g. value-based payment, primary care, social determinants of health) is a plus. Candidates must be willing to learn new technological skills as necessary to work with the Fund’s web site and surveys.

Ability to write and condense information for various audiences, to prepare and analyze budgets, and prepare PowerPoint presentations, graphics, charts and tabular data presentations is necessary. Interest in health policy and public health is essential. Preference will be given to those with undergraduate coursework or major in a healthcare related or public policy field.

This candidate will be intellectually curious and able to gather, assess and synthesize information from various sources. The candidate must have an interest in and strong commitment to the Fund's mission and current grants program. Flexibility and skill in working as a team member are a must as the position requires working in a highly demanding, multiple task environment with changing priorities and deadlines. The successful candidate will be proactive, will take initiative and will be able to work independently.

The Fund has a relatively small staff, and judgment, integrity, and the ability to listen with sensitivity to others are traits that are particularly important in an organization of the Fund’s size, where teamwork is essential to effectiveness. The ability to work collegially with a variety of Fund staff and interest in and strong commitment to the Fund’s mission and grants programs are key qualifications.  

HOW TO APPLY

Please send cover letter (including salary expectations) and resume with the subject line: “Program Assistant, DSR – [Your Name]” to: [email protected].

COMPENSATION

Commensurate with background and experience. The Fund offers an excellent benefits package

Employment at The Commonwealth Fund is based upon personal capabilities and qualifications without discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, sexual preference, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, medical condition, disability, or any other protected characteristic as established by law.

PROGRAM ASSISTANT (Health Care Coverage and Access)

THE ORGANIZATION

The Commonwealth Fund — among the first private foundations started by a woman philanthropist, Anna M. Harkness — was established in 1918 with the broad charge to enhance the common good. Today, the mission of The Commonwealth Fund is to promote a high-performing health care system that achieves better access, improved quality, and greater efficiency, particularly for society’s most vulnerable, including low-income people, the uninsured, and people of color. The Fund carries out this mandate by supporting independent research on health care issues and making grants to improve health care practice and policy. An international program in health policy is designed to stimulate innovative policies and practices in the United States and other industrialized countries.

THE PROGRAM ON HEALTH CARE COVERAGE AND ACCESS

The Affordable Care Act brought sweeping change to the U.S health system, expanding comprehensive health insurance to millions of Americans and making it possible for anyone with health problems to get coverage by banning insurers from denying coverage or charging more because of pre-existing conditions.  As a result, the number of uninsured people has fallen by nearly half since the ACA became law.  There has also been a decline in the share of people reporting problems paying medical bills or not getting needed care because of cost. The large body of research on the ACA shows that the law’s overall impact on people’s ability to afford insurance and get health care has been positive.   However, three distinct, yet interrelated, problems remain: 30 million people remain uninsured, 40 million people with insurance have plans that are leaving them underinsured, and health care costs are growing faster than median income in most states.

In order to help meet these challenges, the coverage program and the tracking initiative conduct research on the extent and quality of insurance, health care access and financial problems stemming from inadequate coverage, and health system performance at the national, state, and local levels, including examining and developing policy options aimed at improving performance.

SUMMARY POSITION DESCRIPTION

Reporting to the Vice President and working closely with the Research Associate, Senior Researcher, and Senior Scientist, the Program Assistant is the staff member responsible for providing daily support for the Health Care Coverage and Access Program. The Program Assistant will be expected to perform a variety of duties ranging from daily administrative and grants management tasks to writing, editing, and research responsibilities.

SPECIFIC RESPONSIBILITIES

Grants Management (40%)

  • Provide support in the development of grants, including: conducting background research; working with potential grantees to refine proposals and ensure completion of all required documents; assisting in internal reviews of proposals; taking detailed notes and preparing summaries of review meetings for proposed grants. Draft correspondence to current and prospective grantees; assemble and provide materials on Fund programs, projects, and other activities.
  • Provide support for the program, including: drafting summaries of proposed grants, payment and reporting schedules, and letters of agreement; monitoring timelines and tracking grantee products, including papers and conferences; scheduling grant payments accordingly; writing summaries of results of internal review of grantee products, including papers and reports; planning meetings, forums or conferences related to grantee work; and preparing memos analyzing completed projects.
  • Act as a liaison with Communications to ensure the dissemination of all grant products, including: coordinating the review of draft grantee publications by Fund staff and the promotion of grantee-published articles; tracking products as they progress in the publication process; fact checking language for the Fund website that publicizes grantee work; reviewing and providing program updates to the Fund website as needed; coordinating with grantees and Communications staff to produce webinars, podcasts, and other multimedia to promote grantee work and publicize the program.

General Administrative Support (40%)

  • Provide administrative support to the Vice President: including the calendar, phone, travel, meetings, expense reports, correspondence, and distribution of program work.
  • Arrange appointments and schedule conference calls and some in-house meetings. Involved in the facilitation of discussion, content of materials for attendees, and minutes/reports of the meeting/conference.
  • Prepare documents for internal meetings, including the annual program plan, budget meeting, and proposal review meetings. This includes closely monitoring grantee work status and impact throughout the year, internet and library research and assembling materials and detailed information about projects. Prepare materials, including PowerPoint slides, for public and internal presentations.
  • Prepare correspondence to current and prospective grantees, consultants, and experts reviewing proposed projects; assemble and provide materials on Fund programs, projects, and other activities as requested by grantees and other individuals.
  • Occasionally, the Assistant will travel to relevant meetings and conferences to represent and support the work of the program and its grantees.
  • Support the Research Associate, Senior Research Associate, and Senior Scientist.

Research and Analysis (20%)

  • Provide research support for Fund reports, fact sheets, and issue briefs based on Fund commissioned surveys, Fund state data center, and congressional legislation. This work may include literature reviews, statistical analyses (using computer statistical software), and tables and chart preparation. After a reasonable period of time, the Assistant will be expected to participate and otherwise assist in the analysis of Fund survey and other data.  This includes statistical analysis using STATA or other software as appropriate. Draft tables and charts as well as summaries of grantee reports.
  • Under direction, track, evaluate and summarize federal legislation, regulations, and guidance issued on health reform law as it regards health insurance coverage and related issues, as well as state implementation of health reform. Conduct background research, including literature reviews, internet searches and track journals, working papers, legislative developments and public coverage of health policy issues related to health reform and the Health Care Coverage and Access program area.
  • Maintain up-to-date internal databases of literature and federal survey releases on the Program’s areas of interest and current health reform and issues, authored by other researchers or research organizations as well as government reports including the Census Bureau, CDC, Congressional Budget Office, Department of Health and Human Services, Urban Institute, RAND Corporation, Kaiser Family Foundation, and others.

The Fund’s philosophy on successful performance in the job includes the willingness on the part of all staff members to handle any assignment necessary to further the goals of the program and of the institution. This may include taking on responsibility for other program areas or departments if the need arises.

QUALIFICATIONS

  • A college bachelor’s degree with a major in economics, public policy, or public health is preferred
  • One to two years of work experience, preferably in health policy or policy research
  • Strong technical skills, including proficient use of databases (Salesforce is a plus) and Microsoft Office (Excel, Word, and PowerPoint). Familiarity with STATA, SAS, or similar statistical software is a plus.
  • Experience in analyzing and interpreting data
  • Meeting management experience
  • Ability to multi-task, prioritize, and follow through to effectively manage work and meet multiple tight deadlines
  • Exceptional attention to detail and organizational skills
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Good judgment and the ability to act independently within standard guidelines
  • Flexibility and skill in working as a team member

The Fund has a relatively small staff, and judgment, integrity, and the ability to listen with sensitivity to others are traits that are particularly important in an organization of the Fund’s size, where teamwork is essential to effectiveness. The ability to work collegially with a variety of Fund staff and interest in and strong commitment to the Fund’s mission and grants programs are key qualifications.

HOW TO APPLY

Please send cover letter (including salary expectations) and resume with the subject line: “Program Assistant, HCCA – [Your Name]” to: [email protected].

COMPENSATION

Commensurate with background and experience. The Fund offers an excellent benefits package.

Employment at The Commonwealth Fund is based upon personal capabilities and qualifications without discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, sexual preference, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, citizenship, medical condition, disability, or any other protected characteristic as established by law.