News Center for Advancing Health Services, Policy & Economics Research

Institute for Public Health names Karen Joynt Maddox co-director of the Center for Health Economics and Policy

Written by Kim Furlow, communications manager for the Institute for Public Health 

Joynt Maddox (Photo: MATT MILLER, WUSTL)

The Institute for Public Health at Washington University in St. Louis has named Dr. Karen Joynt Maddox, MD, MPH, the co-director of the Center for Health Economics and Policy (CHEP), joining current CHEP co-director Timothy McBride, PhD, Bernard Becker Professor, Brown School.

The goal of the Center for Health Economics and Policy is to improve population health in America by encouraging health policy and economics research and dissemination. William G. Powderly, MD, the Larry J. Shapiro Director of the Institute for Public Health feels that the addition of Dr. Joynt Maddox, will expand Center expertise in its next phase of work.

“The Institute for Public Health convenes cross-disciplinary faculty and researchers to tackle major community health issues and to eliminate health disparities,” Powderly says. “A focus on health economics and health policy led by Drs. McBride and Joynt Maddox will go a long way in helping the Institute develop long-lasting solutions to these major challenges.”

“I look forward to joining the Institute for Public Health, Dr. McBride and the amazing team at CHEP to help grow health policy research at Washington University,” says Dr. Joynt Maddox. “There is a pressing need to use rigorous research to ensure that health policies promote high quality and reduce disparities. CHEP is a leader in this area both locally and nationally.”

Dr. Joynt Maddox is a cardiologist at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and an Assistant Professor at Washington University School of Medicine and the Brown School. She also serves as a health policy advisor for BJC Healthcare. She is a health policy researcher with expertise in quality measurement and payment reform, and is interested in the impact of health care payment policy on vulnerable populations and on health equity. Before joining the WashU faculty in 2017, she served for two years in the Office of Health Policy at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. She has authored more than 120 peer-reviewed publications, and has received federal and foundation grants focused on health policy issues. She serves as the associate editor for health policy at the Journal of the American Medical Association, and is a member of committees related to quality measurement and payment reform at the National Quality Forum, American College of Cardiology, and American Heart Association.

As the region and the U.S. face historic challenges in the areas of health economics and policy, Dr. McBride says that the understanding of health economics and policy, and payment policy will be essential to solving the nation’s goals for health care access, quality and affordability.

“Dr. Joynt Maddox comes to us with a national reputation in payment reform, and for health providers, she knows how to incorporate social determinants of health more directly into the payment structure,” says McBride. “Additionally, her work strongly complements what the Center is already doing, especially in terms of transforming the health care system.”

The Institute’s team also wishes to acknowledge the contribution of Dr. William A. Peck, MD, Co-Director Emeritus of the Center for Health Economics and Policy. Dr. Peck has served as CHEP co-director alongside McBride since 2015. Peck was the Alan A. and Edith L. Wolff Distinguished Professor of Medicine, former dean of the School of Medicine, and former executive vice chancellor for medical affairs and president of the Washington University Medical Center.

“Dr. Peck used his wealth of knowledge and experience in medicine and his many contacts to advance health policy,” says McBride. “He is also one of the most generous mentors I have ever met, and will continue to play that role.”

The mission of the Center for Health Economics and Policy (CHEP) is to encourage the development of evidence-based research focused on improving health, and to disseminate this work to policymakers and other stakeholders. Through collaborative program development and training with WashU faculty scholars and students and the production and dissemination of policy briefs, conferences and other tools to policymakers and community leaders, CHEP and the Institute for Public Health continue to make an impact on public health policy and reform in Missouri and across the nation.

For more information about the Institute for Public Health and its Center for Health Economics and Policy, contact