U-M School of Public Health Scholarship Stories: Jason Buxbaum

Scholarship Stories


Jason Buxbaum

SPH Degree Program

M.H.S.A. in Health Management and Policy


Hillside, New Jersey

SPH Scholarship

MS.J. Axelrod/Eugene Feingold Memorial Scholarship: This annual scholarship assists economically disadvantaged students who demonstrate academic excellence and the values of helping the underserved.

Focus at SPH

I’m really interested in helping providers and hospitals deliver better care by changing how we pay them. I’m particularly excited about payment reform for primary care providers. Right now it’s often tough for providers to deliver critical “inbetween” care—the phone call to the diabetic asking about progress on her weight-loss plan, the e-mail to the asthmatic asking about his medication adherence. Rethinking benefit design to help motivate patients is another key part of the equation, and I’m honored to work on these issues with the U-M Center for Value-Based Insurance Design.

Why Health Policy

I’ve always been interested in public policy, especially public policy that promotes equal opportunity. No one should live or die because of how much money they make.

Previous Job Experience

Three-and-a-half years with the National Academy for State Health Policy in Portland, Maine. My team’s big project was supporting states in promoting the patient-centered medical home model—giving primary care providers the tools they need to consistently offer high-quality, effective primary care.

How Scholarships Make the Difference

My SPH scholarship is a godsend. It means I’ll be able to take a job after graduation where I can have the biggest impact, as opposed to being overwhelmingly focused on paying down loans.

On Having a Scholarship Named after S.J. Axelrod and Eugene Feingold

I’ve read about the professors’ history at SPH, and I admire their steadfastness to the principles of equity, fairness, and access for the vulnerable. Professor Axelrod said that medicine is much too important to be left to doctors, and I couldn’t agree more. Professor Feingold helped reform hospital payment in Michigan—and I very much hope to continue those efforts here in Michigan and beyond.

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