Rachel M. Werner (PARC Research Associate) and Mary Ersek (PARC Research Associate) co-authored a National Academy of Sciences Engineering and Medicine (NASEM) report calling for sweeping reorganization of the nursing home industry entitled, "The National Imperative to Improve Nursing Home Quality." The report points out that despite nursing home residents making up less than half of one percent of the U.S. population, as of October 2021, they accounted for approximately 19 percent of all COVID-19 deaths. The report shows “the pandemic also highlighted the pervasive ageism evident in undervaluing the lives of older adults.” Read more in the LDI Research Update.
Norma B. Coe (PSC/PARC Research Associate) and Rachel Werner (PARC Research Associate) authored an LDI blog post entitled, "Family and Friends are the Invisible Workforce in Long-term Care," about their new research published in Health Affairs. These findings help to explain the stories of staffing shortages and burnout in nursing homes under COVID despite no apparent drop in staff hours, when visitor bans were one of the first policy responses to the outbreak. The bans essentially eliminated this invisible workforce, increasing the care demands on the staff, on top of the extra work of the COVID protocols and infections themselves.
New study conducted by PARC Associate Rachel M. Werner titled "Medicaid Expansion Alone Not Associated With Improved Finances, Staffing, Or Quality At Critical Access Hospitals" published in The Health Affairs Journal was featured in a Penn LDI Blog.
Professor of Medicine and Health Care Management
M.D. Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, 1998
P.h.D., Department of Health Care Management, The Wharton School, 2004
Dr. Rachel Werner is a Professor of Medicine in the Division of General Internal Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and Core Investigator with the VA HSR&D Center for Health Equity Research and Promotion (CHERP). She received her medical degree from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, where she also did her residency in Internal Medicine. While completing a clinical fellowship in general internal medicine, she also received a Ph.D. in health economics from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Werner’s research seeks to understand the effect of health care policies and delivery systems on quality of care. In particular, she has examined the role of quality improvement incentives on provider behavior, the organization of health care, racial disparities, and overall health care quality. Her work has empirically investigated numerous unintended consequences to quality improvement incentives and was among the first to recognize that public reporting of quality information may worsen racial disparities. She is currently principal investigator of an R01 from the Agency of Healthcare Research and Quality (examining how pay-for-performance in hospitals changed the value of health care) and an R01 from the National Institute of Aging (examining the effect of Medicaid pay-for-performance for nursing homes on delivery of nursing home care).