Health Law, Policy & Management.

HLPM Research
Our research aims to explain the causes of inequities in health and health care, and recommend interventions, laws and policies to reduce them.
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Recent Department News

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Medicaid Policy Lab

A one-of-a-kind unit evaluating the impacts of policy changes and innovative care delivery models on health insurance coverage, access to care, quality of care, and health outcomes to advance health equity.

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Department Mission

HLPM is committed to leading scholarship and the public conversation about the most pressing health and social policy concerns of the day. Our research aims to explain the causes of inequities in health and health care, and recommend interventions, laws and policies to reduce them. Our teaching seeks to prepare public health professionals, researchers, and activists to advance social justice and health. Our advocacy involves us in efforts to improve health and health care locally, nationally and around the world.

Department Vision

Produce research, support education, and pursue advocacy that shapes systems and policies that eliminate health inequities, improve health and promote health care for all.



Welcome to HLPM.

We have lived through a pandemic using laws, policies, and management, the concerns of this department. During these unprecedented years for public health, our incredible faculty continued to find ways to do its important, impactful work—teaching and mentoring students, serving our communities, influencing the health of the nation by providing research, countering health misinformation and leading public discussion in areas of pressing national concern.

In my six years leading the Health Law, Policy & Management department, we have hired 23 new faculty members—economists, lawyers, psychologists, health care operations experts, leaders in health services—who bring new methods, ideas, and energy to our School of Public Health. We believe that the mix of disciplines captured in our department’s name is reflected in the interdisciplinary products of our research and teaching. Our new faculty keeps HLPM as heterogeneous, eclectic and productive as ever, recently chosen as the #6 best policy department in the country by US News and World Report. All our effort is done with any eye on improving the health of vulnerable and marginalized populations, in keeping with the mission of our School of Public Health and the adjacent Boston Medical Center.

As we’ve grown, we’ve re-committed to our particular research strengths. Our renowned faculty is nationally prominent in five arenas: Medicaid policy, health economics, social policy, substance use, and health law. Our Medicaid Policy Lab—led by Megan Cole, Sarah Gordon and Paul Shafer—is one-of-a-kind unit evaluating the impacts of policy changes and innovative care delivery models on health insurance coverage, access to care, quality of care, and health outcomes to advance health equity. The Partner Evidence-based Policy Resource Center (PEPReC) for the Veterans Hospital Administration—led by Austin Frakt, Melissa Garrido and Steve Pizer-- studies demand and access to care for veterans. The Healthy Minds Study, the largest, most comprehensive study of mental health, health behaviors, and health service use on U.S. college campuses, is led by Sarah Lipson. HLPM faculty are among the lead investigators of the historic, $89 million, four-state Healing Communities Study, which is bending the curve on opioid overdose deaths in Massachusetts and beyond. Our health law faculty have been leaders in public health law in the areas of the Second Amendment and gun violence, reproductive justice, and contagious disease control, and as always, human rights and ethics. Their work is practical: explaining the divide between constitutional theory and the real-world health implications of courts’ decisions.

The department houses two of the school’s most popular MPH certificates--Health Policy and Health Care Management--as well as the unique Health Law certificate. These certificates attract large numbers of BUSPH students for good reason: our faculty are superior teachers and mentors across the 46 courses we offer. The CAHME accredited Health Care Management program was rated 19th best health care management program by US News and World Report in 2023 competing against business schools and health administration programs. Chris Louis, HCM director, recently won the Educational Innovation teaching award at Boston University.  Our department faculty also leads the core curriculum course PH719, “Health Systems, Law and Policy,” and therefore has contact with every MPH student; its instructors have won the BUSPH core Teacher-Of-The-Year twice in the last four years, led by Michael Ulrich and Liz McCuskey.  Our graduates take positions in government, consulting, NGOs, academia, pharmaceutical industry and 99% are immediately employed following graduation.

We have a top-notch doctoral training program. We have two T32 training grants in the department, one from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) focused on substance use, infectious disease, HIV and policy implementation. The second, funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), focuses on health policy, quality and equity in the care of vulnerable populations. Doctoral students also work on PEPReC projects related to veteran health outcomes and workforce capacity and with individual faculty throughout the department.

Department faculty created and lead two school-wide seminar series that attract faculty and trainees from across the community.  These quantitative and qualitative methods series provide BUSPH with a meeting place for state-of-the-art methodological discussions and review of work-in-progress. Our annual Charles Donahue Lecture brings a national figure to speak on pressing issues related to health access, policy, and management issues. Our DEIJ efforts involve staff, students and faculty working together to create the best and most inclusive workplace possible, always with an eye on improvement.

Our faculty are widely honored for scholarship and leadership. They hold grants and contracts not only from National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation, from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Commonwealth Fund and WT Grant, but also from Starbucks, Google, the Laura and John Arnold Foundation and more.  Megan Cole was a Peter Paul Career Development Professorship, the university’s top award for junior faculty. David Jernigan has served on a National Academy of Sciences, Engineering & Medicine committee. Nicole Huberfeld and colleagues recently released the third edition of their seminal textbook Public Health Law.

We strive to reach audiences beyond academia. We appear on television and can be heard on the radio, are quoted in top newspapers, get interviewed on popular websites, and write amicus briefs. Public Health Post, the only website in the U.S. delivering public health news daily, is based in HLPM.

HLPM reflects the School of Public Health and the concerns of public health. We believe knowledge shouldn’t end with knowledge. Widely curious and scholarly, we are also academic activists. We want our work and students’ work to change the world.


Michael D. Stein, MD

Affiliated Degrees:

MS in Population Health Research: Translation and Implementation Science

PhD in Health Services and Policy Research


Latest Publications

  • Published On 8/1/2024Book Review: Pandemic Politics: The Deadly Toll of Partisanship in the Age of COVIDJournal of Health Politics, Policy, and Law
  • Published On 7/9/2024Management of Depression in Adults: A Review.JAMAread at PubMed
  • Published On 7/5/2024Clinical risk factors and blood protein biomarkers of 10-year pneumonia risk.PloS oneread at PubMed
  • Published On 7/5/2024Advances in difference-in-differences methods for policy evaluation research.Epidemiology (Cambridge, Mass.)read at PubMed
  • Published On 7/3/2024Impact of Nurse Residency Program on Time-to-Fill Nurse Vacancies at the Veterans Health Administration.Medical careread at PubMed