urban institute nonprofit social and economic policy research

John Holahan

John Holahan



Institute Fellow


Dr. Holahan has serious interest in health policy as it affects low-income individuals but also federal and state budgets. He has been interested in developing a politically acceptable response to the need for health reform in the United States. He and others at the Urban Institute contributed to development of the individual mandate proposal in Massachusetts. This followed several years of efforts to achieve universal coverage through single payer systems or through employer mandates. "The individual mandate was designed to be a centrist proposal. I have been quite surprised and disappointed by the political reaction to this attempt to find a politically balanced approach to reform."

John Holahan has a wide range of research interests, including state health policy, Medicaid, and issues on federalism and health. He has written on Medicaid block grants and other proposals on changing the financing of Medicaid. He has been interested in changes in insurance coverage and rising numbers of uninsured, particularly on the role of changes in income distribution and changes in the number of uninsured. He is currently involved in a major project looking at a wide range of cost containment options. He helped developed the Massachusetts health care reform law.

Dr. Holahan has written several books and served on editorial boards of a number of journals - Health Affairs, Health Services Research, and Inquiry.

Areas of expertise

health policy, state health policy, Medicaid, federalism and health

Selected Publications from John Holahan

  • How Will the Affordable Care Act Affect Jobs?
  • The 2007-09 Recession And Health Insurance Coverage
  • The Cost of Failure to Enact Health Reform: 2010 - 2020 (Updated)
  • Toward Universal Coverage in Massachusetts
  • Publications by topic:
    Elderly
    Economy
    State and Local Finance
    Health and Health Care
    Health Insurance
    Uninsured/Uncompensated Care
    Medicaid
    Health Insurance and Medicare

    See all publications by John Holahan

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