Lucy Savitz has led a wide-ranging career.  She brings a unique mix of perspectives having served as Economist for the bipartisan Colorado Legislative Council, Financial Planner at UNC Health Care, faculty member at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC-CH), senior researcher at two national research organizations, and most recently as an embedded researcher at Intermountain Healthcare and Kaiser Permanente (KP).  Dr. Savitz is currently Vice President for Health Research in the KP Northwest Region where she directs the Centers for Health Research in both Oregon and Hawaii.  

As a teacher and mentor, Dr. Savitz maintains active academic and training connections in the field.  She is Affiliate Professor in the Health Systems and Policy Programs at the OHSU-PSU School of Public Health and an Adjunct Associate Professor in the UNC-CH Department of Health Policy and Management.  She is also on the faculty of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), serving on their Impacting Cost+Quality, Joint Replacement, Episodic Bundle Payment, and Patient Reported Outcomes collaboratives as well as leading numerous workshops at both the National and BMJ-hosted International Forum over the years.  Personally, Dr. Savitz finds great reward in mentoring students, clinical and junior investigators. She is a founding member of the AcademyHealth Delivery System Science Fellowship (DSSF) Program, which she continues to actively support.

As a thought leader, she has led 12 responses to Federal Requests for Information over the past 3 years.  She was an invited member of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), National Academy of Medicine, and AcademyHealth committees that worked to establish competencies for learning health system researchers and more recently the future of health services research (HSR).  In this latter capacity, she is a member of the Special Committee to Inform the Academy Health Policy Position on Federal HSR Structure.  Dr. Savitz served on the AARP National Policy Council 2017-18 and has also been invited to serve on several external advisory boards:  University of Michigan, Department of Learning Health Science; University of Kentucky’s Center for Health Services Research; and IMPAQ International. She also serves on the Advisory Board for the High Value Healthcare Collaborative for which she was previously the Board Committee Chair for Discovery and Dissemination. She is the Board Chair Elect (2019-2020) of the Health Care System Research Network (formerly HMO Research Network) and a member of the KP National Research Council.  

In service to the field of health services research, Dr. Savitz holds several positions.  She is a member of the AHRQ National Advisory Council and the CMS Executive Leadership Council.  At AcademyHealth, she chairs the Methods and Data Council, serves on the Delivery System Science Fellowship Program Committee, is a senior editor for eGEMs, and is Chair of the Committee on Advocacy and Public Policy or CAPP.  Her terms of service on AcademyHealth’s Methods and Data Council and CAPP end in 2018.

Dr. Savitz brings 30+ years of experience in healthcare delivery and health services research.  She holds a BSBA in Finance and MBA from the University of Denver as well as a Ph.D. in Health Policy and Administration from UNC-CH.  Prior to coming to KP Northwest, she was Assistant Vice President for Delivery System Science in the Intermountain Healthcare Institute for Healthcare Delivery Research where she was responsible for facilitating mission critical health services research and mentoring junior investigators.  Her Ph.D. minor was in medical geography and she has applied this knowledge base in over half a dozen projects to assess resource allocation and spatial variations in service delivery as well as neighborhood-level social determinant risk factors. Dr. Savitz led 4 projects specific to quality measurement for AHRQ; 11 mixed methods program evaluation projects; and more than two dozen applied projects in healthcare system settings across the rural-urban continuum.  Applying results of applied emergency preparedness research following 9/11, she worked first at the DHHS Incident Command Center in Washington, DC for 16 weeks and later with Coastal Family Health Centers (a 24-clinic FQHC system) in Biloxi, Mississippi to provide technical assistance for strategic planning and evaluation of the recovery effort after Hurricane Katrina. On behalf of the Alliance for Pediatric Quality, she led development of a set of national improvement priorities and identification of actionable improvement initiatives with associated measures to drive excellence in pediatric care for the U.S.  Further, Dr. Savitz has been acknowledged as an Examiner for the 2001 and 2002 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Program, administered by the National Institute for Standards and Technology in the U.S. Department of Commerce and the American Society for Quality.  

Statement of Interest

“I welcome the opportunity to serve as an elected member of the AcademyHealth Board, building on my past service in leadership roles on the Methods and Data Council and Committee on Advocacy and Public Policy.  With an appreciation for the past, strong anchoring in the present, and optimistic vision of the future, I believe that I can uniquely represent a broad set of perspectives that will positively contribute to the future of our field.  As the professional organization of HSR, AcademyHealth has morphed from largely a membership of academic researchers to also include members working in industry, policy positions, payer organizations, and healthcare delivery.   At the same time, the field of HSR has evolved tremendously over the past 50+ years. The scale and sources of data, research designs, analytic methods, and computing capabilities have dramatically changed.  Further, the challenges we face today are very similar to those we’ve faced repeatedly over time—threats to funding, political targets, miscommunication, and questions about where and how the Federal government should support a home for HSR.  Given that the need to address social determinants in research and practice is now well accepted, payment policies are being transformed from volume to value, and social norms/expectations are being re-aligned with patient and family preferences, it is incumbent on us as a field to produce the research needed.  The opportunity to strategically leverage a diverse, loyal membership base will be the stronghold that we can use to bolster the field of HSR in a dynamic and promising future.”