University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute

University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute


Donna Friedsam
Health Policy Programs Director
Population Health Institute
Participating University: 
State Agency Partner: 
Wisconsin Department of Health Services
Area(s) of Expertise: 
Health Care Reform
Health Policy Consulting and/or Development
Health Policy Research
Outreach and Education
Program Consulting and/or Evaluation
Program Development and/or Management
Workforce Development and Training
Current Services: 
The Health Policy group of the UW Population Health Institute connects with Wisconsin's leading public and private sector policy makers in the health services arena. Programs focus on access, cost, financing, quality and outcomes. Specific program areas include the following: Evaluate mechanisms for expanding health coverage and reforming health care financing mechanisms; Assess potential and current state health reforms and the impact of federal policies on the state of Wisconsin; Engage with private health care providers, purchasers, and advocates to assess and improve quality and reduce the cost of health care; Analyze the potential of current and emerging data, particularly claims-based and other administrative data, to contribute to improved value and health outcomes; Conduct pilot research in the arena of health care delivery and health care financing; Produce briefings and forums for legislators, executive branch officials and public and private sector decision-leaders on topical matters of health policy and practice; and Produce practice-oriented reports, issue briefs, and peer-reviewed publications to advance the body of evidence in the field.

Evidence-Based Health Policy Project

The UW School of Medicine & Public Health's Population Health Institute and the La Follette School of Public Affairs, in partnership with the Wisconsin Legislative Council, have joined together under the UWSMPH's stated intent to accelerate the public health transformational processes and expedite programmatic development across sectors. Read more at

Cost, Coverage, & Access

The UW Population Health Institute is evaluating Wisconsin's BadgerCare Plus health insurance program and reforms, in partnership with the Wisconsin Department of Health Services. BadgerCare Plus is Wisconsin's Medicaid and SCHIP programs, providing health insurance for most Wisconsin children and many low and middle income families. Read more at

Health Reform

Visit for more information about: Health Policy Group Programs, Presentations, and Materials about the Affordable Care Act.

Health Impact Assessment (HIA)


  1. To determine
    • the potential effects of a proposed policy, plan, program, or project on the health of a population;
    • the distribution of the effects within the population.
  2. Provide recommendations on monitoring and managing those effects.


  • a systematic process;
  • using an array of data sources and analytic methods;
  • promoting and fully considering input from the broad range of stakeholders.

Read more at 

Wisconsin eHealth Initiative

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services contracted with the UW Population Health Institute Health Policy Unit to support the work of the former eHealth Care Quality and Patient Safety Board, which has now become the WIRED for Health Board.

Learn more at

Health System Performance

The Health Policy Unit conducts consultancies and research projects in collaboration with partners in the public and private sector, focusing on quality, cost, and value in health care. Read more at

Additional Comments: 
More information is available at