Learn more about Richard Frank

Richard G. Frank is the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation. As the ASPE, Dr. Frank advises the Secretary on development of health, disability, human services, data, and science policy and provides advice and analysis on economic policy.

Dr. Frank is on leave from his position as the Margaret T. Morris Professor of Health Economics in the Department of Health Care Policy at Harvard Medical School, a position he has held since 1999. From 2009 to 2011 he served as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation directing the office of Disability, Aging and Long-Term Care Policy. His research is focused on the economics of mental health and substance abuse care, long term care financing policy, and disability policy. Until his appointment, Dr. Frank was also a Research Associate with the National Bureau of Economic Research and recently served as an Editor for the Journal of Health Economics.

From 1994 to 1999, Dr. Frank was Professor of Health Economics in the Department of Health Policy at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Frank previously held faculty positions at the Department of Health Policy and Management in the School of Hygiene and Public Health at Johns Hopkins University from 1984 to 1994 and at the University of Pittsburgh from 1980 to 1984. He was a Peace Corps Volunteer in the Republic of Botswana from 1975 to 1976. He is the 2011 recipient of the Distinguished Service Award from the Mental Health Association of Maryland.

Dr. Frank was awarded the Georgescu-Roegen prize from the Southern Economic Association, the Carl A. Taube Award from the American Public Health Association, and the Emily Mumford Medal from Columbia University’s Department of Psychiatry. In 2011 he received the Distinguished Service Award from the Mental Health Association of Maryland. Dr. Frank received the John Eisberg Mentorship Award from National Research Service Awards. He was elected to the Institute of Medicine in 1997. He is co-author with Sherry Glied of the book ‘Better but Not Well” (Johns Hopkins Press).

Dr. Frank received a B.A. in Economics from Bard College and a Ph.D. in Economics from Boston University. He is married to Liz Frank, who works at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. They have two sons: Peter, a Peace Corps Volunteer in Ecuador and Michael, a budding entrepreneur in San Francisco.

Recent Posts by Richard Frank

Targeting The Opioid Drug Crisis: A Health And Human Services Initiative

Deaths from drug overdoses have been rising steadily over the past two decades and have surpassed car accidents to become the leading cause of injury death in the United States.  Millions of Americans rely on prescription opioids for much needed relief from the pain caused by illness and...

The Medicare Part D Drug Rebate Proposal: Rebutting An Unpersuasive Critique

A proposal to require manufacturers to pay a minimum rebate on drugs covered under Medicare Part D for those beneficiaries who receive the program’s Low-Income Subsidy (LIS) has received considerable attention during the current debate over the federal budget. Through mandating discounts in...