Len Nichols
Learn more about Len Nichols

Dr. Len Nichols became Professor of Health Policy and Director of the Center for Health Policy Research and Ethics at George Mason University in early 2010. He plans to continue the work he began at the New America Foundation, bridging the worlds of health economics and health services research for health system stakeholders and clinical leaders, elected and appointed policy officials and journalists. He founded and directed Health CEOs for Health Reform, a group that was pivotal in helping policy makers see that delivery system reform and health insurance reform are necessary and feasible complements.


Nichols has testified frequently before Congress and state legislatures, published widely in a variety of health journals, and is a popular public speaker on health policy and politics. Before joining George Mason, Nichols served as the Director of the Health Policy Program at the New America Foundation, the vice president of the Center for Studying Health System Change, a principal research associate at the Urban Institute, senior advisor for health policy at the Office of Management and Budget during the Clinton Administration’s health reform effort, and chair of the Economics Department at Wellesley College. He has advised the World Bank and the Pan American Health Organization, as well as various state governments and departments of the US Government. Nichols received his Ph.D. from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana in 1980.


Recent Posts by Len Nichols

What Does October 1 Mean To Health Reform?

October 1, 2013, is not the most important date in Affordable Care Act implementation history. The most important date is November 4, 2014, when the next members of the House of Representatives and 1/3 of our senators are elected or re-elected. The nation’s collective judgment about the ACA...

Is Health Reform Fiscally Responsible?

Editor’s note: On April 10, Charles Blahous released a paper on the fiscal consequences of the Affordable Care Act. Below Len Nichols responds to the arguments Blahous raised in the April 10 paper and offers his own views on the ACA’s fiscal consequences. In related Health Affairs...

State Of The Union: Let’s Be Honest For A Change

Editor’s Note: Below, Len Nichols, Professor of Health Policy and Director of the Center for Health Policy Research and Ethics at George Mason University, discusses President Obama’s State of the Union address and House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) Republican...

Reforming Medicare’s Governance To Enhance Value-Based Purchasing

With the release of the Medicare Trustees’ report for 2009, the worsening economy, and the continued high and rising cost of health care, many are anxiously awaiting a credible plan to reform the Medicare program and the health system as a whole. As Peter Orszag and others have argued...

In Obama Reform Push, Medicare Leads The Way

President Barack Obama opened his speech to Congress on February 24 calling for our nation to take responsibility for its future once again and finally face our long-term challenges, including our structural fiscal imbalances. He was clear that we will no longer ignore the challenge to reform...

Covering The Uninsured: Calculating The Cost

Editor’s Note: This post by Len Nichols of the New America Foundation appears in tandem with yesterday’s publication on the Health Affairs Web site of an article by Jack Hadley of George Mason University, John Holahan of the Urban Institute, and coauthors, which estimates the cost of covering...