The Medicaid Policy Center is made possible by generous funding from The Nicholson Foundation.
The Medicaid Policy Center (MPC) is dedicated to advancing the quality, cost effectiveness, and long-term sustainability of the New Jersey Medicaid program to improve the health and wellness of New Jersey residents.
The MPC delivers independent research, analysis, and policy solutions to improve health outcomes while also controlling costs and works in partnership with other organizations and the state government agencies that operate the New Jersey Medicaid program.
The new center benefits from the Quality Institute’s tradition of bringing people from all corners of health care together to collaborate on innovative solutions to improve the state’s health care system.
The MPC is made possible by generous funding from The Nicholson Foundation.
Director, Medicaid Policy Center
Matthew D’Oria is the Director of the Quality Institute's Medicaid Policy Center, which is a continuation and extension of the Medicaid 2.0 grant work. Matt also serves as a Quality Institute Senior Fellow. Prior to this, Matt provided consulting services to NJ hospitals, long-term care providers and insurers. From March 2006 June 2010 he was Deputy Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Health where he was responsible for the regulation of health care institutions, hospital and long-term care financing, and health care policy and research. Prior to his time as Deputy Commissioner he served for 13 years in various leadership roles in the NJ Division of Medical Assistance and Health Services which operates the NJ Medicaid and FamilyCare programs. He holds a B.A. in Public Administration from the College of New Jersey and an M.B.A. from Rider University.
Senior Program Officer
Kate Shamszad joined the New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute as Senior Program Officer in September, 2018. In this role, Kate will work as part of the Medicaid Policy Center. Prior to joining the Quality Institute, Kate served as a Clinical Director of Child Life and Integrative Care at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. Kate has held leadership roles and worked clinically in many pediatric hospitals. Throughout her previous work and in her current role, she will focus on Medicaid best practices, evidence-supported decision making, and increasing both access and affordability to high quality healthcare. Kate has a Bachelor of Science in biology from the George Washington University, a Masters of Science in Child Life from Bank Street College of Education, and a Masters of Public Health degree from the University of West Florida.
Program and Communications Coordinator
Vanessa Gibbs joined the New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute as the Program and Communications Coordinator in June 2018. Vanessa brings her professional and academic expertise in marketing and communications to the Quality Institute. With her B.A. in English from Drew University, her past experience in digital communications, and especially through her past work in advertising sales and marketing at the Meredith Corporation, a major magazine publisher in New York City, Vanessa has strong experience with writing, editing, social media management, graphic design, strategic planning, project management, and web design. In her role at the Quality Institute, Vanessa brings, and continues to develop, her expertise in order to execute the organization’s marketing and communications in the following areas: social media management, website, newsletter, policy and grant funded projects, print and digital materials. She also coordinates the Medicaid Policy Center’s (MPC) administrative programming, with a focus on leading MPC communications and supporting research and policy work within the MPC.
Health Care Cost Institute
Niall was appointed President and CEO of HCCI in June 2017. In this role, he is responsible for all aspects of the HCCI mission, promoting HCCI’s research agenda, examining cost trends in U.S. healthcare, ensuring maximal use of the HCCI data resources to enable world class research and analysis by external users, leading HCCI’s Medicare Qualified Entity business, and working with state and national policy makers to improve the health care system. He is a nationally recognized expert in health care policy, the use of health care data to enable and accelerate health system change, and data transparency. He has published widely in leading academic journals, including the Journal of the American Medical Association, the New England Journal of Medicine and Health Affairs. Prior to joining HCCI, Mr. Brennan was Chief Data Officer at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). He has also worked at the Brookings Institution, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission, the Congressional Budget Office, the Urban Institute, and PriceWaterhouseCoopers. Mr. Brennan received his MPP from Georgetown University and his BA from University College Dublin, Ireland.
Author of Final Exam: A Surgeon's Reflections on Mortality
A physician and writer, Dr. Pauline W. Chen is the author of Final Exam; A Surgeon’s Reflections on Mortality, an influential memoir and call to action dealing with issues of medical training and physicians’ roles in end-of-life care. Translated into nearly a dozen languages, the book became a New York Times bestseller and garnered critical acclaim as a finalist for the Books for a Better Life Award and one of The New York Times book critic’s ten best books the year it was published.
Dr. Chen is also a regular contributor to The New York Times where she puts her practice to print, examining the relationship between physicians and the patients they serve. Educated at Harvard University and Northwestern University Medical School, Dr. Chen completed her surgical training at Yale University, the National Institutes of Health and the University of California, Los Angeles. She is the recipient of numerous clinical, teaching and public service awards, including the UCLA Outstanding Physician of the Year Award, the George Longstreth Humanness Award at Yale, the Chinese American Medical Society’s Distinguished Community Service Award, and the Olga Jonasson Distinguished Member Award from the Association of Women Surgeons.
In addition to writing, Dr. Chen speaks regularly to medical and general audiences across the world, including the Association of American Medical Colleges, the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization and TED Global. She works in the VA Boston Healthcare System.
National Association of Medicaid Directors (NAMD)
Dianne Hasselman joined NAMD as Deputy Executive Director in February 2017. In this position, she manages a broad spectrum of activities including planning NAMD’s public policy and advocacy agenda in coordination with its board of directors, overseeing grant-funded programs, and developing new initiatives. Dianne is also responsible for ensuring that members’ needs are being met, so that they receive maximum value from being a part of NAMD’s network of Medicaid directors.
Prior to joining NAMD, Dianne served as the Executive Director of Federal Programs at the Network for Regional Healthcare Improvement where she led multi-stakeholder initiatives for regional health improvement collaboratives. She also spent over seven years with the Center for Health Care Strategies where she led a variety of technical assistance programs and worked closely with state Medicaid agencies.
Dianne has a Master in the Science of Public Health from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and a B.A. from the University of California at San Diego.
Dr. Nicole McGrath had a dental practice in Montclair, NJ for nearly 25 years. She’s a tireless advocate in reaching out to at-risk children in her community who lack access to affordable dental care. Dr. McGrath has been a member of the Communication, and the Oral Health Coalition Committees of the NJ Dental Association since 2008. She has been recognized for her commitment and spirit of volunteering by multiple organizations over the past two decades. Dr. McGrath is a Board Member of Advocates for Children of New Jersey, the President of Essex County Dental Society, and the Chair of the Membership Council of New Jersey Dental Association. She became a Fellow of the American College of Dentists—the oldest national honorary organization for dentists—with the Class of 2017. Fellows of ACD have exemplified excellence through outstanding leadership and exceptional contributions to dentistry and society.
Association for Community Affiliated Plans
Margaret A. Murray is the founding CEO of the Association for Community Affiliated Plans (ACAP). She has led the organization since its inception in 2001, steering it through tremendous growth from its origins as an Association of 14 community health center-owned plans to 60 Safety Net Health Plans across the nation, covering more than 20 million people through Medicaid, Medicare and Marketplaces.
Ms. Murray is a national expert on health care policy for people with low incomes and is a frequent speaker on these issues at national conferences and in the media. She has published several articles on the German health care system as a result of an Alexander von Humboldt fellowship in Berlin. Ms. Murray received her M.P.A. from the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University and her B.A. cum laude in Economics and Classical Civilization from Wellesley College.
Prior to leading ACAP, Ms. Murray was the Medicaid Director for the State of New Jersey under the administration of Governor Christine Todd Whitman, where she oversaw the expansion of the FamilyCare program to cover all children under 350% of poverty. She was also a senior budget analyst for the U.S. Office of Management and Budget, with responsibility for negotiating the budget neutrality agreements for Medicaid managed care waivers.
Ms. Murray is a member of the National Academy of Social Insurance and served on the Board of Directors of the Alliance for Health Policy. She has previously served on the Institute of Medicine’s Committee on the Public Financing and Delivery of HIV Care, the Maryland Community Health Resources Commission and on the board of a Community Health Center in Southern Maryland.
In 2018, Kathleen Noonan became the Chief Executive Officer of the Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers, a nonprofit healthcare innovator that recently launched the National Center for Complex Health and Social Needs. Kathleen has worked extensively at the intersection of health and welfare law and policy, especially as it relates to children and families. In 2008, she co-founded PolicyLab at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) to connect clinical research with real-world health policy priorities. She is a member of the faculty in the University of Pennsylvania Masters of Public Health Program, and is adjunct faculty in the Division of Pediatrics at the School of Medicine. Kathleen has also served as a mediator in public-impact cases concerning health and human services. Kathleen received her JD from Northeastern University School of Law, and her BA from Barnard College, Columbia University.
United Hospital Fund of New York
Chad Shearer is Vice President for Policy at the United Hospital Fund (UHF) where he oversees work to build a more effective health care system in New York through initiatives focusing on children’s health, innovation, insurance and Medicaid. He leads a team of experts engaged in policy and health system landscape analysis, identification and promotion of delivery system and payment reform innovations, and convening diverse audiences to collaborate on major health policy issues in New York. Mr. Shearer also directs UHF’s Medicaid Institute, conducting data and policy analyses explaining New York's Medicaid program which serves over 6 million low-income New Yorkers at a cost of over $70 billion annually.
Previously, Mr. Shearer was at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public & International Affairs at Princeton University, where he served as deputy director of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s State Health Reform Assistance Network, a project coordinating technical assistance to 11 states implementing the Affordable Care Act’s coverage expansion provisions. He was also a lecturer in public affairs at the university, teaching a graduate capstone policy workshop. Mr. Shearer also spent time at the Center for Health Care Strategies, where he helped shape its Medicaid Leadership Institute. Before that, he served as legislative director for Congressman Pete Stark, who was Chairman of the Ways and Means Subcommittee on Health, in the United States House of Representatives.
Mr. Shearer holds both law and master of health administration degrees from the University of Iowa.