Roybal Center for Health Policy Simulation

Moving health simulation findings into programs, practices, and policies

People

Directors

Dana Goldman

Goldman_DanaDana Goldman is Director of the Roybal Center for Health Policy Simulation, and the Leonard D. Schaeffer Chair in Health Policy at USC. He is also a professor and the inaugural director of the Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics, one of the nation’s premier health policy research institutions. Dr. Goldman is the author of over 150 articles and book chapters, including publications in the most prestigious medical, economic, health policy, and statistics journals. He is a health policy advisor to the Congressional Budget Office, Covered California (California’s insurance exchange), and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Institute. He serves on several editorial boards including Health Affairs and the American Journal of Managed Care, and is the founding editor of the Forum for Health Economics and Policy. Dr. Goldman’s work has been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Business Week, U.S. News and World Report, The Economist, NBC Nightly News, CNN, National Public Radio, and other media. In 2009, he was elected to the National Academy of Science’s Institute of Medicine in recognition of his professional achievement. He was the first recipient of the MetLife Foundation’s Silver Scholar Award, honoring his research on aging; the Eugene Garfield Economic Impact Prize, recognizing outstanding research demonstrating how medical research impacts the economy; the National Institute for Health Care Management Research Foundation award for excellence in health policy; and the Alice S. Hersh New Investigator Award recognizing contributions of a young scholar to health services research. He is also a founder and managing director of Precision Health Economics, a consulting firm to the health care industry. Dr. Goldman received his B.A. summa cum laude from Cornell University and a Ph.D. in Economics from Stanford University.

Etienne Gaudette

Etienne GaudetteEtienne Gaudette is Policy Director of the Roybal Center for Health Policy Simulation, a Research Professor at the USC School of Pharmacy, and an economist at the Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics. Dr. Gaudette was awarded the Vanier Graduate Scholarship — Canada’s most prestigious graduate scholarship — and Quebec’s Society and Culture Research Fund’s postdoctoral award for his research. Dr. Gaudette’s research focuses on health economics, economics of aging, microsimulation methods and applied macroeconomics. His current research uses simulation methods to study the health and economic impact of health policy and medical innovation. Dr. Gaudette’s publications include analyses of health financing policies in the context of aging, of the future of the Medicare program, and of the health and economic impact of medical innovation for the elderly. Dr. Gaudette received a B.Sc. and M.Sc. in Economics from the University of Sherbrooke and a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Quebec in Montreal.

Bryan Tysinger

Bryan TysingerBryan Tysinger is Director of Simulation and Data for the Roybal Center for Health Policy Simulation. Mr. Tysinger holds a Master’s Degree in Policy Analysis from the Pardee RAND Graduate School and a B.S. in Applied Mathematics from Harvey Mudd College. He has been a research programmer and quantitative analyst at the Schaeffer Center since 2011, working primarily on microsimulation modeling. As simulation director, Mr. Tysinger oversees the technical development team, assesses the feasibility of new projects, and establishes priorities for development to support the center’s goals.

Researchers and Staff

Julie M. Zissimopoulos

Julie M. ZissimopoulosJulie M. Zissimopoulos is an Assistant Professor in the Sol Price School of Public Policy. She serves as the Associate Director of the Leonard D. Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics, one of the nation’s premier health policy research institutions. She co-directs the National Institute on Aging funded Resource Center for Minority Aging Research and is a network associate of the MacArthur Foundation Research Network on an Aging Society. She was previously an associate professor of research at the University of Southern California and prior to that, a senior economist at the RAND Corporation. She specializes in the economics of aging. Topics of special interest are cost of Alzheimer’s disease, savings and wealth, labor force behavior, financial and non-financial support between generations of family members and medical expenditures at older ages. Dr. Zissimopoulos’ research sponsors have included the National Institute on Aging and the Social Security Administration. She is a frequent speaker on the economics of aging and her work has been featured in the Los Angeles Times, on California Public Radio, PBS Newshour, and other media. Dr. Zissimopoulos received her B.A. summa cum laude from Boston College and a Ph.D. in economics from the University of California, Los Angeles.

Maria Jose Prados

Maria Jose PradosMaria Jose Prados is a Research Economist at the Center for Economic and Social Research at the University of Southern California. Most of her work focuses on understanding the sources and dynamics of inequality over the lifecycle. She specializes in quantitative and applied economics, and her research interests have to do with inequality, health, gender, labor economics, and household finance. Dr. Prados holds a PhD in Economics from Columbia University and she completed a postdoctoral appointment at USC’s Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics. Before arriving in the US, she received her Licenciatura en Economia with highest honors from Universidad Nacional de Cuyo (Mendoza, Argentina) and pursued graduate studies at Universidad Torcuato Di Tella (Buenos Aires, Argentina).

Neeraj Sood

Sood_NeerajNeeraj Sood is Director of Research at the Leonard D. Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics and Associate Professor at the Titus Family Department of Clinical Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Economics & Policy at the University of Southern California. His prior work has focused on the economics of innovation, HIV/AIDS, health care financing, and global health. His research has been published in several peer-reviewed journals and books including leading journals in economics, medicine and health policy. He has testified frequently on health policy issues before state legislators and his work has also been featured in several media outlets including the New York Times, Washington Post, U.S. News and World Report, and Scientific American. Dr. Sood was the finalist for the 16th and 21st Annual NIHCM Health Care Research Award, recognizing outstanding research in health policy. He was also the 2009 recipient of the Eugene Garfield Economic Impact Prize, recognizing outstanding research demonstrating how medical research impacts the economy. Dr. Sood is on the editorial boards of Health Services Research and Forum for Health Economics and Policy. He is a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) and standing member of the Health Services Organization and Delivery study section at NIH. Prior to joining USC, Dr. Sood was a senior economist at RAND and Professor at the Pardee RAND Graduate School.

Darius Lakdawalla

Lakdawalla_DariusDarius Lakdawalla is the Quintiles Chair in Pharmaceutical Development and Regulatory Innovation at the School of Pharmacy, as well as a Professor in the Sol Price School of Public Policy at the University of Southern California (USC). He has been the recipient of the Milken Institute’s Distinguished Economic Research Award for best research in the field of economics, and the recipient of the Garfield Prize for research on the economics of medical innovation. His work has been published in leading journals of economics, medicine, and health policy, and funded by the National Institute of Aging, the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, and the National Bureau of Economic Research. Dr. Lakdawalla is currently a Research Associate in the Health Care and Health Economics programs at the National Bureau of Economic Research, in Cambridge, Mass., and a Visiting Scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. He serves as an Associate Editor at the Review of Economics and Statistics. He is also the former Director of Research at the Bing Center for Health Economics at the RAND Corporation. Dr. Lakdawalla received his BS in mathematics and philosophy from Amherst College and his PhD in economics from the University of Chicago.

Duncan Ermini Leaf

Leaf_DuncanDuncan Ermini Leaf is a research programmer at the Leonard D. Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics.  His specialty areas include simulation and computational methods for statistical inference and learning.  Duncan joined the Schaeffer Center in 2012 after finishing his M.S. and Ph.D. in Statistics at Purdue University. He also holds a B.A. in Computer Science from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.  His work is focused on general improvements to the Roybal Center’s simulation models and analyses supporting specific simulation projects.  Recent projects include adapting the Future Elderly Model to simulate health outcomes in Los Angeles County, exploring the effects of palliative care interventions on medical costs and quality of life, and simulating the effects of an early-childhood education intervention through later life.

Daniella Meeker

Daniella Meeker is an Assistant Professor of Preventive Medicine in Pediatrics at the University of Southern California and Adjunct Information Scientist at the RAND Corporation. Dr. Meeker directs the Informatics Program in the Southern California Clinical Translational Sciences Institute and is a professor at the Pardee RAND Graduate School. Her engineering research focuses on distributed architectures supporting integration of research, data analysis, and practice. Her data policy research includes investigations in how to improve the safety of health information technology and clinical quality measurements. Other projects have included development of collaborative platforms for knowledge management, machine learning, and health and behavioral economics. Meeker earned her Ph.D. in Computation and Neural Systems from the California Institute of Technology.

Collaborators

Irene Vidyanti

Irene VidyantiIrene Vidyanti is a Scientist / Modeler at the Policy Analysis Unit, Office of Health Assessment and Epidemiology, Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (LACDPH). As a Scientist/Modeler, she leads various simulation modeling efforts and assists in performing economic evaluation to aid planning and evaluation of various projects in LACDPH. She is also a collaborating programmer at University of Southern California’s Schaeffer Center of Health Policy and Economics. She holds a BA/M.Eng degree in Information and Computer Engineering from University of Cambridge and a Ph.D. degree in Industrial and Systems Engineering from University of Southern California.

Ricardo Basurto-Dávila

Ricardo Basurto-DávilaRicardo Basurto-Dávila is a health economist at the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health’s Office of Health Assessment and Epidemiology. In his current position, he leads the Policy Analysis Unit, which supports the Department’s decision-making process through economic evaluations and analytical studies of policies and programs that affect population health. Dr. Basurto-Davila was previously a Prevention Effectiveness Fellow at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, where he conducted economic evaluations of the efforts implemented by the United States and other countries to respond to the 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic. Prior to that, he was an Assistant Policy Analyst at the RAND Corporation, where his work focused on migration, social and environmental determinants of health, and inequalities in health and health care. He earned a B.A. in economics from Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey in Mexico, a M.S. in economics from the University of Texas at Austin, and the Ph.D. in Policy Analysis from the Pardee RAND Graduate School in Santa Monica, CA.