For Immediate Release:
May 30, 2024
Media Contact:
Lauren Adams

Washington D.C. (May 30, 2024)—AcademyHealth announced today the 2024 winners of its Annual Awards program. The awards program recognizes individuals and projects that have made significant contributions to the fields of health services research and health policy, while supporting AcademyHealth’s mission to improve health and health care for all.

AcademyHealth will honor the recipients of these prestigious awards throughout the 2024 Annual Research Meeting in Baltimore this June 29-July 2. The Alice S. Hersh Emerging Leader Award, the Outstanding Dissertation Award, and Publication-of-the-Year Award will be recognized at the opening plenary on June 29 at 4:00 p.m., the Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion recipient will be recognized on Sunday, June 30 at the 11:15 a.m. plenary session, and the Reinhardt Distinguished Career Award recipient will be recognized at the closing plenary on Tuesday, July 2 at 12:15 p.m. 

Reinhardt Distinguished Career Award
Glenn Flores, M.D., FAAP

The Reinhardt Distinguished Career Award is AcademyHealth’s highest award, recognizing leaders who have made significant and lasting contributions to the field of health services research (HSR). Previously known as either the Distinguished Career or Distinguished Investigator Award, the Award was renamed in 2023 to honor Professor Uwe Reinhardt, a seminal figure in the field who established high standards in moving evidence into action and translating evidence to serve the public interest.

The 2024 recipient, Dr. Glenn Flores is a Professor and Chair of Pediatrics, Senior Associate Dean of Child Health, and the George E. Batchelor Endowed Chair in Child Health at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, and Physician-in-Chief at Holtz Children’s Hospital in the Jackson Health System. He graduated magna cum laude from Harvard College, and attended medical school at the University of California, San Francisco, School of Medicine. He is a member of the National Advisory Committee (NAC) of the Robert Wood Johnson (RWJ) Amos Medical Faculty Development Program, the Research Committee and DEI Committee of the Association of Medical School Pediatric Department Chairs, and the editorial board of Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved and the. He is a former member of the US Preventive Services Task Force, the Council of the American Pediatric Society, and RWJ Aligning Forces for Quality Program NAC. 

Dr. Flores is Director of the NIDDK/APA/PIDS/APS/ABP Research in Academic Pediatrics Initiative on Diversity (RAPID), which is now in its 11th year of NIH funding, and whose goal is to provide career development and advancement for diverse junior faculty clinician-investigators in academic pediatrics. He has provided two Congressional Briefings, US Senate and Congressional testimony, and DHHS and ACF briefings. He has been a consultant/NAC member for the US Surgeon General, IOM/NAM, CDC, NICHD, AMA, NHMA, First Focus, the DHHS Office of Civil Rights, and Sesame Workshop. 

Throughout his career, Dr. Flores has been the recipient of several prestigious awards in child health research and advocacy. He has been awarded major grant funding by NICHD, NIDDK, AHRQ, CMS, the RWJ Foundation, and the Commonwealth Fund. He was a member of the Cradle to K Cabinet of Mayor of Minneapolis Betsy Hodges, and the National Advisory Committee of the RWJ Health Opportunity and Equity (HOPE) Measures. He drafted 2018 legislation which was signed into law by Congress and the President as part of CHIP reauthorization which makes organizations that use parent mentors eligible to receive $120 million in CMS grants for Medicaid and CHIP outreach and enrollment. There are now CMS-funded parent-mentor programs in 11 states and the Cherokee Nation. His 259 publications address a wide variety of research and policy issues, including racial/ethnic disparities in children’s health and health care, health equity, health policy, insuring the uninsured, social determinants of health, health services research, public and population health, language barriers in health care, and childhood obesity.

Alice S. Hersh Emerging Leader Award
Shekinah A. Fashaw-Walters, Ph.D.

The Alice S. Hersh Emerging Leader Award recognizes scholars early in their careers as health services researchers who show exceptional promise for future contributions to the field.

As a health services researcher, Dr. Fashaw-Walters’ program of research focuses on understanding the inequities in aging while elucidating and explicitly naming racism as a fundamental determinant of health inequities within long-term care.  She conducts research across the long-term services and support continuum. Dr. Fashaw-Walters is a health equity and aging tenure-track Assistant Professor in the Division of Health Policy & Management at the University of Minnesota’s School of Public Health, a graduate of Brown University, UNC Chapel Hill, and the University of Central Florida. Dr. Fashaw-Walters is also an affiliate faculty member with the Center for Antiracism Research for Health Equity and the Center for Health Aging and Innovation. She envisions a society where the strength, autonomy, dignity, and independence of all older adults are enhanced by LTSS policies and practices that promote healthy and equitable aging. And to get there, as she says, “there is much work to be done.”

Publication-of-the-Year Award
Changes in Hospital Adverse Events and Patient Outcomes Associated with Private Equity Acquisition
Sneha Kannan, M.D., M.S. and Zirui Song, M.D., Ph.D.

The Publication-of-the-Year Award recognizes the best and most relevant peer-reviewed, scientific work that the fields of health services research and health policy have produced and published in the prior calendar year.

Dr. Kannan is a Research Fellow at Harvard Medical School’s Department of Health Care Policy and a physician in the Division of Pulmonary/Critical Care at Massachusetts General Hospital. She received her Bachelor's degree in Bioengineering from MIT, her M.D. from University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, and an M.S. in Health Policy from Harvard University. She completed her Internal Medicine residency at Massachusetts General Hospital and her Pulmonary/Critical Care Fellowship at the Harvard Combined Fellowship Program. Her research focuses on the cost of providing medical care and how organizational financial incentives impact patient outcomes and care delivery.

Zirui Song, M.D., Ph.D. is an Associate Professor of Health Care Policy and Medicine at Harvard Medical School and a primary care physician at Massachusetts General Hospital, where he also practices on the inpatient medicine teaching service. His research focuses on the health and economic implications of incentives and interventions that affect the health care system. This has included payment reform, Medicare Advantage, employer programs, corporate acquisitions of hospitals and physicians, and public health issues. Dr. Song directs the Health Policy track in the MGH Internal Medicine Residency Program and serves as faculty Director of Research in the HMS Center for Primary Care. He is an Associate Editor of JAMA Health Forum.

Outstanding Dissertation Award
Yashaswini Singh, Ph.D., M.P.A.
Private Equity and Physician Practice Strategy

The Outstanding Dissertation Award honors an outstanding scientific contribution from a doctoral thesis in health services research or health policy.

Yashaswini Singh, Ph.D., M.P.A. is a health care economist and Assistant Professor of Health Services, Policy, and Practice at Brown University School of Public Health. Her areas of interest and expertise include consolidation, vertical integration, and private equity in health care markets. Her current research examines how acquisitions of physician practices by private equity firms change physician practice patterns and the downstream effects on health care spending, access, quality, and the clinical workforce. Professor Singh's research has been published in Health Affairs and the Journal of the American Medical Association, featured in media outlets including Associated Press, Politico, and Vox, and received a research award from the International Health Economics Association in 2023. Professor Singh earned her Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins University, a graduate degree in finance and economic policy from Columbia University, and a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and economics from Bryn Mawr College.

Dr. Singh’s dissertation leverages novel data linkages to provide policy-relevant evidence to advance our understanding of growing corporate consolidation of physician practices by private equity funds. She addresses three research questions related to private equity and physician practice strategy in the United States. First, what are the effects of growing acquisitions of physician practices by private equity funds for health care spending and patient utilization? Second, do private equity acquisitions of vertically integrated physician practices change strategic referral behavior by increasing self-referrals within the practice? Third, what are the implications of private equity acquisitions on patient spending, quality, and access?

Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion
The Association of University Programs in Health Administration

The Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion Award recognizes organized groups within health services and policy research (HSR) that have created a more diverse, inclusive, just, and welcoming experience and sense of community for their employees and/or members.

The Association of University Programs in Health Administration (AUPHA) is a global network of colleges, universities, faculty, individuals, and organizations dedicated to the improvement of health care delivery through excellence in health care management and policy education. Its mission is to foster excellence and drive innovation in health management and policy education and promote the value of university-based management education for leadership roles in the health sector. It is the only non-profit entity of its kind that works to improve the delivery of health services – and thus the health of citizens – throughout the world by educating professional managers at the entry level. AUPHA’s membership includes the premier baccalaureate, master’s, and doctoral programs in health management education in the United States, Canada, and around the world.

This award will be accepted by Dr. Dan Gentry, President & CEO, on behalf of the Association of University Programs in Health Administration, the AUPHA Board’s Diversity with Inclusion Committee, and the Cultural Perspectives and Inclusive Excellence Faculty Forum.

AUPHA will be recognized at the Sunday plenary session at the Annual Research Meeting as well as the Diversity Networking Reception. The winning group will also have the opportunity to share their experience via the AcademyHealth blog.