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Federal and State Health Policy


The U.S. health care landscape is constantly evolving, whether in response to crises like the COVID-19 pandemic and climate change, the emergence of disruptive technologies like artificial intelligence, or longstanding challenges like the affordability of care. Federal and state policymakers are constantly in need of solutions as they seek to achieve a more effective, efficient, and equitable health care system that produces better outcomes while controlling growth in health care costs.

The Commonwealth Fund’s Federal and State Health Policy (FSHP) program aims to equip policymakers with the evidence they need to make informed policy decisions. To that end, FSHP anticipates and responds to emerging policy opportunities with research and analysis produced by Commonwealth Fund experts and grantees. Our focus is:

  • Investing in projects that generate timely, evidence-based insights and analysis for federal and state policymakers, policy influencers, and stakeholders.
  • Disseminating and sharing lessons learned in policy and practice, with a focus on education and information-sharing among policymakers, influencers, and stakeholders.
  • Facilitating states’ ability to learn from each other and fostering dialogue between state and federal policymakers.
  • Ensuring the research needs and policy priorities of state and federal officials are reflected in the Commonwealth Fund’s programmatic strategies.

FSHP informs policymakers and influencers through educational policy briefings and events, strategic grantmaking, connections between grantees and policymakers, and written responses to policy proposals and requests for information. The program also maintains strategic partnerships with organizations that serve specific target audiences, such as state legislators, health policy leaders, and Medicaid directors.

Program Contact:

Rachel Nuzum, Senior Vice President, Federal and State Health Policy

2024 Program Funding Priorities

  • Building diverse, creative dissemination partnerships to connect Fund research with federal and state policymakers and staff
  • Ensuring that racial equity is embedded in policy proposals, and that proposed changes consider the impact on people of color and marginalized groups
  • Identifying policy levers for meeting patients’ health-related social needs
  • Building the power of communities to engage in policy and systems change

Our Experts

Rachel Nuzum

Senior Vice President, Federal and State Health Policy

Akeiisa Coleman

Senior Program Officer, Medicaid

Christina Ramsay

Program Officer, Federal and State Health Policy

Sara Federman

Senior Program Assistant, Federal and State Health Policy