Senior Researcher

Alyson Marano Ward, R.N., M.P.H., is a senior researcher at L&M with more than twenty years of experience working on public health policy issues and conducting program evaluation for a variety of audiences, including Medicare and Medicaid eligible populations.

She has assisted with and extensively supported the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) contracts related to Consumer Research on Communicating Coverage, Choice, and Quality, building upon the agency’s work in communications over the last decade to continue refining materials so that they promote informed choice among the public.

Over the course of eight years and in collaboration with the Delmarva Medical Foundation, Ms. Ward served as project manager for the annual external review of Medicaid managed care plans for the District of Columbia’s Department of Health Care Finance (formerly the Medical Assistance Administration). Ms. Ward also conducted research on and with pharmacists exploring how their understanding of the Medicare program informs how they are able to support beneficiaries. In additions, she also helped conduct research on consumers’ reactions to available information on CMS’s Compare tools websites, including Dialysis Facility Compare, Hospital Compare, Home Health Compare, and Hospice Compare. Ms. Ward served as the clinical nurse on the research team assessing the Medicare Care Choices Model, a demonstration project allowing hospice-eligible Medicare beneficiaries the option to continue receiving curative care services administered through fee-for-service Medicare while receiving ‘traditional’ hospice services.

On behalf of CMS, Ms. Ward is currently conducting qualitative research efforts to inform the development of web tools for the federally facilitated health insurance exchanges mandated by the Affordable Care Act. She is also working as member of the project team for the Division of Value, Incentives, and Quality Reporting (DVIQR) Program Support (DPS) task order to assist CMS with implementing the Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program (HRRP), Hospital-Acquired Conditions Reduction Program (HACRP), Deficit Reduction Act Hospital-Acquired Conditions Program (DRA HAC), Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) Value Based Payment (VBP) Program, and ancillary implementation support for other value based payment and public reporting programs. Her role includes: Conducting stakeholder interviews to inform the development of Education and Outreach (E&O) materials; developing templates and user guides for Hospital-Specific Reports (HSRs), which are generated for each hospital that participates in the Hospital Inpatient Quality Reporting Program; developing a communication plan describing approaches for communicating updates to stakeholders for the HRRP, HACRP, and DRA HAC programs; developing FAQs, Fact Sheets, E-mail blasts, and memos for the QualityNet website. Ms. Ward is also contributing to a project evaluating the impact of the Home Health Value-Based Purchasing Model (HHVBP) Model conducting qualitative research with participating Home Health Agencies (HHAs.) Sponsored by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation (CMS Innovation Center) this model is designed to support greater quality and efficiency of care among Medicare-certified Home Health Agencies (HHA) across the nation.

Ms. Ward holds a B.S.N. from Georgetown University and is a Registered Nurse. She also earned her M.P.H. with a concentration in Maternal and Child Health from the Boston University School of Public Health.

Nkhita Allam

Research Associate

Nkhita Allam is a Research Associate at L&M with experience in population health consulting, economic evaluation and health policy analysis, grant writing, and public health equity research.

Lauren Blatt

Senior Researcher

Lauren Blatt is a senior researcher at L&M. She has spent over 15 years using qualitative and quantitative research methods and analyses to inform, evaluate, and improve health care programs and performance.

Michael Cavanaugh, M.A.

Senior Researcher

Michael Cavanaugh is a senior researcher at L&M. Mr. Cavanaugh is an expert in community based participatory research, ethnography, working with tribal communities, and qualitative research methods.

Sally Crelia, M.P.H.

Senior Research Director

Sally Crelia, M.P.H., is a senior research director at L&M. She has extensive experience in various methods of qualitative research, including designing, conducting and analyzing results from cognitive and in-depth interviews, small group discussions and focus groups, and key informant interviews, in English and in Spanish.

Finn Dobkin

Research Assistant

Finn Dobkin is a Research Assistant at L&M with quantitative research experience in healthcare policy and public health. He has contributed to quantitative and qualitative analysis for government reports, as well as academic manuscripts.

Colleen Dobson, M.S.

Senior Researcher

Colleen Dobson, M.S., is a senior researcher at L&M. Ms. Dobson has nearly ten years of experience conducting qualitative research to support health care communications and evaluation projects, with a particular focus on elderly and low-income populations, individuals with chronic conditions and disabilities, health insurance consumers and the uninsured.

Julia Doherty, M.H.S.A.

Senior Research Director

Julia A. Doherty, M.H.S.A., is a Senior Research Director at L&M. Ms. Doherty has over 30 years of experience in health care management, policy, and research, and focuses on qualitative research in health care delivery and payment innovation.

Lisa H. Green, Ph.D.

Founding Principal

Lisa H. Green, Ph.D., is a founding principal of L&M and brings over two decades of experience as a health services researcher focused on health care access, quality and costs for populations covered under federal health care programs.

Patrick Hardy

Research Associate

Patrick Hardy is a research associate at L&M. Mr. Hardy has experience in program evaluation and health policy analysis and works on evaluation and program support projects for federal clients such as the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), the CMS Innovation Center (CMS), and the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC).

Margaret Edder Johnson, M.B.A.

Director

Margaret Edder Johnson, M.B.A., is a director at L&M. She has over 20 years of experience in health care policy, research, and management. She brings skills in primary research data collection, including leading key informant interviews with providers, payers, consumers, and employers; conducting in-depth formative and cognitive interviews with consumers; and moderating focus group discussions with consumers and providers.

Ferhat Q. Kassamali, M.Sc., M.P.H.

Senior Researcher

Ferhat Q. Kassamali, M.Sc., M.P.H., is a senior researcher at L&M. He joined L&M in 2009 and has nearly 20 years of experience in financial analysis and modeling, strategic planning, business processes, data analytics, prospective payment systems, program evaluation, and general health care policy and research.

William Lane

Senior Researcher

William P. Lane, is a Senior Researcher at L&M. He has more than 25 years of experience in organizational strategy and operations, managed care operational assessments, and formative and evaluative research, including key informant interviews and case studies with consumer groups, providers, government agencies, and consumers across a range of health care topics.

Heather McPheron, M.P.H.

Director

Heather McPheron, M.P.H., is a Director at L&M. She has 15 years of health care consulting experience on a wide range of health care management and research projects ranging from provider-based operations and strategy to program planning and evaluation, policy analysis, and technical assistance.

Kelly Moriarty

Senior Research Director

Kelly Moriarty is a senior research director at L&M. She has spent two decades conducting health care research, focusing on consumer research and communications, quality measure development, and program implementation and assessment.

Alexandra (Rose) Nagele

Research Assistant

Alexandra (Rose) Nagele is a Research Assistant at L&M Policy Research. Ms. Nagele has research experience in the biological sciences as well as the humanities. At L&M, she assists with primary data collection and analysis for the evaluation of the Home Health Value Based Purchasing Model, an initiative of the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation (CMMI).

Heather Onuma-Brennan, M.P.H.

Senior Researcher

Heather Onuma-Brennan, M.P.H., is a senior researcher at L&M, bringing twenty years of experience conducting public health research, planning, and health communications projects, with a primary focus on vulnerable populations.

Angel Rollo

Research Assistant

Angel Rollo, M.Eng, is a Research Assistant at L&M Policy Research. Ms. Rollo has experience conducting quantitative and qualitative research and using quality and process improvement tools in the field of healthcare.

Monica Sarmiento, M.A.

Director

Monica Sarmiento, M.A., is a director at L&M. She has over 15 years of experience in the areas of project management, health care research, and monitoring and compliance activities.

Claudia Schur, Ph.D.

Senior Research Director

Claudia L. Schur, Ph.D., is a senior research director at L&M. Dr. Schur has more than 30 years of experience in health policy research, program evaluation, survey design and implementation, and quantitative and qualitative analysis.

Vladislav Slanchev, Ph.D.

Senior Researcher

Vladislav Slanchev, Ph.D., is a senior researcher at L&M. Dr. Slanchev brings research experience in quantitative analysis, evaluation design for assessing the performance of health care payment models, development of econometric models to explain the determinants of individuals’ decisions and outcomes, and survey design.

Myra A. Tanamor, M.P.P.

Founding Principal

Myra A. Tanamor, M.P.P., is founding principal of L&M and has spent more than 20 years working on health care financing, delivery, and health communication strategies. She has extensive project management experience, directing many small- and large-scale qualitative studies for the federal government, non-profit organizations, foundations, and professional associations.

Russ Tisinger, Ph.D.

Senior Researcher

Russ Tisinger, Ph.D., is a senior researcher at L&M. Dr. Tisinger’s work focuses on health-related consumer choice and social marketing messaging. He currently conducts both qualitative and quantitative audience research to support the development and evaluation of HealthCare.gov, the online portal for the federally facilitated health insurance exchanges.

Lisa Tomai, M.S.

Senior Researcher

Lisa Tomai, M.S., is a senior researcher at L&M. She has over 25 years of experience in healthcare analytics and research in both public and private settings. Ms. Tomai has worked extensively with large healthcare claims and administrative databases from sources including Medicare, Medicaid, Worker’s Compensation, and commercial carriers.

Alyson Marano Ward, R.N., M.P.H.

Senior Researcher

Alyson Marano Ward, R.N., M.P.H., is a senior researcher at L&M with more than twenty years of experience working on public health policy issues and conducting program evaluation for a variety of audiences, including Medicare and Medicaid eligible populations.

Emily Zhu

Research Assistant

Emily Zhu is a research assistant at L&M. Ms. Zhu has qualitative research experience in public health and has contributed to published literature reviews. At L&M, she provides research support to evaluation projects for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).