Julia Raifman

Julia R. Raifman, ScD, SM

Adjunct Assistant Professor, Health Law, Policy & Management - Boston University School of Public Health


Julia Raifman, ScD, SM conducts research on how health and social polices shape population health and health disparities.

She created and leads the COVID-19 U.S. State Policy Database (CUSP), tracking more than 200 state policies to prevent COVID-19 and reduce economic hardship during the pandemic. Her research on unemployment insurance and food insufficiency helped inform the American Rescue Plan and she is a collaborator on a study indicating that lifting state eviction freezes was associated with increased COVID-19 cases and deaths, a finding that helped uphold a federal eviction moratorium until the fall of 2021. She has also documented how structural racism shaped disparities in susceptibility to severe illness due to COVID-19.

She has communicated about policy evidence and health disparities in the New York Times, the Washington Post, National Public Radio, the Atlantic, BBC news, Axios, USA Today, StatNews, The Guardian, and The Conversation. She has written extensively about reducing disparities in access to vaccines, rapid tests, and high-quality masks and about data-driven mask policies as a potential long-term strategy to reduce the pandemic's disruptions to lives, health, and the economy.

Her research prior to the COVID-19 pandemic was focused on mental health and on HIV. In the area of mental health, she has conducted several studies of the association between LGBT rights and mental distress and between firearms policies and suicide. Her work on HIV is focused on how structural stigma and structural racism shape disparities in the burden of HIV, including implementation of pre-exposure prophylaxis. Dr. Raifman's research on mental health and HIV has been covered in the New York Times, The Guardian, National Public Radio, PBS Newshour, the Washington Post, and The Advocate.

Dr. Raifman leads the Health Inequities Strategic Research area at the Boston University School of Public Health and the Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Justice Committee in the Health Law, Policy, & Management Department. She is committed to supporting structural changes to improve diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice in academia.

Dr. Raifman teaches Quantitative Methods for Health Services and Policy Research. She enjoys mentoring and is committed to promoting the success of diverse students.

Dr. Raifman received her doctoral and masters degree from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and completed a post-doctoral fellowship at Johns Hopkins prior to joining Boston University.


  • Harvard School of Public Health, ScD Field of Study: Global Health and Populations
  • Harvard School of Public Health, ScD Field of Study: Global Health and Populations
  • Harvard School of Public Health, MSc Field of Study: Global Health and Populations/Economics
  • Tufts University, BA Field of Study: Biopsychology

Classes Taught

  • SPHPH843


  • Published on 4/20/2023

    Ibanhes FH, Fenn N, Le Brazidec D, Napoleon S, Predmore Z, Skinner A, Zanowick-Marr A, Galipeau D, Raifman J, Dean LT, Chan PA. Sexuality Transmitted Infections Risk and Interstate Sexual Networks among Men Who Have Sex with Men in New England. Sex Transm Dis. 2023 Apr 20. PMID: 37099419.

    Read At: PubMed
  • Published on 2/2/2023

    Nelson KM, Skinner A, Stout CD, Raderman W, Unger E, Raifman J, Agénor M, Ybarra ML, Dunsiger SI, Bryn Austin S, Underhill K. Minor Consent Laws for Sexually Transmitted Infection and Human Immunodeficiency Virus Services in the United States: A Comprehensive, Longitudinal Survey of US State Laws. Am J Public Health. 2023 Apr; 113(4):397-407. PMID: 36730879.

    Read At: PubMed
  • Published on 1/31/2023

    Bor J, Assoumou SA, Lane K, Diaz Y, Ojikutu BO, Raifman J, Levy JI. Inequities in COVID-19 vaccine and booster coverage across Massachusetts ZIP codes after the emergence of Omicron: A population-based cross-sectional study. PLoS Med. 2023 Jan; 20(1):e1004167. PMID: 36719864.

    Read At: PubMed
  • Published on 1/21/2023

    Dean LT, Predmore Z, Skinner A, Napoleon S, Chan PA, Raifman J. Optimizing Uptake of Long-Acting Injectable Pre-exposure Prophylaxis for HIV Prevention for Men Who Have Sex with Men. AIDS Behav. 2023 Jan 21; 1-11. PMID: 36670210.

    Read At: PubMed
  • Published on 11/19/2022

    Howe CJ, Bailey ZD, Raifman JR, Jackson JW. Recommendations for Using Causal Diagrams to Study Racial Health Disparities. Am J Epidemiol. 2022 Nov 19; 191(12):1981-1989. PMID: 35916384.

    Read At: PubMed
  • Published on 11/16/2022

    Raifman J, Ettman CK, Dean LT, Abdalla SM, Skinner A, Barry CL, Galea S. Economic precarity, loneliness, and suicidal ideation during the COVID-19 pandemic. PLoS One. 2022; 17(11):e0275973. PMID: 36383566.

    Read At: PubMed
  • Published on 11/11/2022

    Skinner A, Stein MD, Dean LT, Oldenburg CE, Mimiaga MJ, Chan PA, Mayer KH, Raifman J. Same-Sex Marriage Laws, Provider-Patient Communication, and PrEP Awareness and Use Among Gay, Bisexual, and Other Men Who have Sex with Men in the United States. AIDS Behav. 2023 Jun; 27(6):1897-1905. PMID: 36357809.

    Read At: PubMed
  • Published on 11/9/2022

    Raifman J, Green T. Universal Masking Policies in Schools and Mitigating the Inequitable Costs of Covid-19. N Engl J Med. 2022 Nov 24; 387(21):1993-1994. PMID: 36351264.

    Read At: PubMed
  • Published on 11/1/2022

    Schnake-Mahl AS, O'Leary G, Mullachery PH, Skinner A, Kolker J, Diez Roux AV, Raifman JR, Bilal U. Higher COVID-19 Vaccination And Narrower Disparities In US Cities With Paid Sick Leave Compared To Those Without. Health Aff (Millwood). 2022 Nov; 41(11):1565-1574. PMID: 36343316.

    Read At: PubMed
  • Published on 10/21/2022

    Sosnowy C, Predmore Z, Dean LT, Raifman J, Chu C, Galipeau D, Nocka K, Napoleon S, Chan P. Paying for PrEP: A qualitative study of cost factors that impact pre-exposure prophylaxis uptake in the US. Int J STD AIDS. 2022 Dec; 33(14):1199-1205. PMID: 36271632.

    Read At: PubMed

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