Leadership in the Center
The directors for the Center for Mental Health and Addiction Policy Research at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Johns Hopkins School of Medicine are conducting services and systems research to improve the lives of persons with mental illness and addiction. Meet our directors:
Elizabeth A. Stuart, PhD
Elizabeth Stuart is a professor in the Department of Mental Health at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, with joint appointments in the Department of Biostatistics and the Department of Health Policy and Management, and is the Associate Dean for Education at the school. She received her PhD in statistics in 2004 from Harvard University and is a Fellow of the American Statistical Association. Stuart has expertise in causal inference, particularly in mental health and health services research. She has worked on projects investigating the effects of alternative healthcare financing models and on the effects of law and policy changes such as the federal mental health parity law. She has received funding for her work from the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, and other funders.
Alene Kennedy-Hendricks, PhD
Alene Kennedy-Hendricks is a Co-Director of the Center and faculty in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She conducts health policy and services research related to mental health and substance use disorders. Her research focuses on examining: the impacts of financing and delivery system reforms on persons with mental illness and substance use disorders; policy responses to the opioid epidemic; social stigma and policy communication surrounding mental health and substance use disorders; and implementation of models that integrate behavioral health, other medical care, and social services. She is particularly interested in policy issues related to the health and wellbeing of vulnerable subpopulations, including pregnant women with behavioral health conditions, transitional-age youth, and individuals involved in the criminal justice system.
Sachini Bandara, MS, PhD
Sachini Bandara is an assistant professor in the Department of Mental Health at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Her research focuses on the health and well-being of marginalized populations, including individuals with mental illness, individuals with substance use disorder and individuals involved in the carceral system. Her work seeks to improve access to high quality treatment services and social safety-net programs and identify communication strategies that reduce stigma and increase support for public health policies. Bandara received her BA from the University of California-Berkeley, MS from the Harvard School of Public Health, and PhD in Health and Public Policy and postdoctoral training in mental health services research from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
Matthew D. Eisenberg, PhD
Matthew D. Eisenberg is a health economist and assistant professor in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. His research interests are focused on how health and health care is changing in the face of the broad shift towards consumer-oriented care. Specifically, he is interested in how consumers react to new information flows (e.g. advertising) and new incentive structures (e.g. benefit design). In these areas, he has studied the effects of antidepressant and anti-anxiety medication advertising as well as consumer utilization and spending responses to high deductibles. He is particularly interested in questions surrounding the interaction of health plan benefit design, mental health care utilization, and substance use disorder treatment. Beyond specific health policy domains, Eisenberg also has experience in using innovative machine learning techniques to bolster causal inference in traditional econometric frameworks. Eisenberg earned his BS from Cornell University and his PhD from Carnegie Mellon University.
Sarah A. White, MSPH
Sarah White is a research associate for the Department of Health Policy and Management at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She contributes to teams focused on the impact of state policies on people with substance use disorders or chronic pain. She is a mixed methods researchers that primarily conducts qualitative interviews with state implementation leaders to understand how policy becomes practice. She also works in the Center’s Stigma Lab, where she collaborates with external partners implementing evidence-based anti-stigma campaigns on substance use disorders and medications for opioid use disorder and evaluates message strategies aimed at decreasing stigma and increasing support for evidence-based drug policy.