About Us

Here's more information about the Center's people, and links to some publications on health care access, neonatal intensive care units, and other related issues.

Joe Brenner and Ellen R. Shaffer founded the Center for Policy Analysis to produce thoughtful, reliable information on policies that affect the public’s health, and to network with colleagues, policy makers and advocates in the U.S. and around the globe in the interest of promoting health.


Center Co-Directors

Ellen R. Shaffer, PhD MPH, and Joseph E. Brenner, MA, are the founders and Co-Directors of the Center.

Ellen R. Shaffer, PhD MPH

Ellen Shaffer writes and lectures extensively on access to health care, women’s health, and globalization.  She served as senior health policy advisor to U.S. Senator Paul Wellstone from 1992 to 1995, guiding staff work on national health care reform and managed care patients’ rights. Her proposal for a state-based universal health service, under a grant from the California Health Care Options Project, extended her work with U.S. Representative Barbara Lee on H.R. 3000, the U.S. Universal Health Service Act. She co-authored the chapter on politics in the latest edition of Our Bodies Ourselves. She serves on the Executive Board of the American Public Health Association. She has a Masters in Public Health from the University of California at Berkeley, a Ph.D. from the School of Hygiene and Public Health at Johns Hopkins University, and is a Certified Employee Benefits Specialist.

Joseph E. Brenner, MA

Joe Brenner is a nationally recognized advocate for public policies and private sector initiatives to promote social and economic justice, and a leader in expanding the voice of working families and community organizations in civil society.  He has conducted extensive research on cross-border labor communication between the U.S. and Mexico, particularly regarding the impact of trade agreements such as NAFTA, and has been a frequent invited lecturer and presenter at national and international fora.  He holds a Masters’ Degree in International Communication from American University in Washington, D.C.

Board of Directors

The Center’s Board members are Ellen Shaffer, Joe Brenner, Terri Owen, Erica Frank, and Mary Anne Mercer.

The Center for Policy Analysis is a nonprofit organization, Tax ID No. 48-1282646.


Our Publications

Here are some of the Center’s publications on access to health care in the US. (Click on underlined titles to link to document.)

California Health Service Plan

The Health Care Options Project was funded by the federal Health Services and Resources Administration (HRSA) to explore options for expanding health care coverage.  The California Health Service Plan (CHSP), drafted by Ellen R. Shaffer and colleagues, proposes measures to create coordinated, responsive and accountable health care systems while expanding access and controlling costs. It proposes to rebalance the relationships among providers and users of health care services, payers, and the state, in the interests of high quality outcomes from personal health services, and improving population health.  It would create a publicly funded program to provide universal and comprehensive coverage for all Californians. March, 2002.

American Journal of Public Health

Universal Coverage and Public Health: New State Studies.  This article summarizes features and cost savings for the California Health Service Plan and 8 other proposals to expand health care coverage through the Health Care Options Project. January, 2003.

Lewin Group Analysis

Costs, Savings and Coverage of HCOP Proposals.  The Lewin Group analyzed all 9 proposals for the Health Care Options Project, finding significant savings from single payer proposals and better access to primary care.  (See Appendix J for the California Health Service Plan.)

Power Point – California Health Service Plan.  April 2002.

New England Journal

Wellstone and Shaffer on Single Payer Bill.
This article described a comprehensive proposal for health care coverage in May, 1993, at the time of the Clinton Administration’s effort for reform.

State Policies and Regional Neonatal Care

Progress and Challenges 25 Years After TIOP.   Regional referral systems that direct high-risk patients to tertiary level neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) improve neonatal survival. But regionalized neonatal care systems face increasing stress in health care systems shaped by managed care and hospital networks. Debates about regionalization have occasionally burst into the public arena, as communities dispute the addition of new NICUs, or state legislatures consider modifying laws or regulations related to NICUs. This is the first recent study to assess regionalization across all the states, and to ask knowledgeable observers across the U.S. about what is driving change. The study answers two questions, based on a comprehensive survey of state health departments, and on the literature:

• What are state policies regarding how regional perinatal systems operate?

• What is changing, and why?  November, 2001.

Internationalist Labor Communication Between the United States and Mexico in the Period Before and After NAFTA.

Joseph E. Brenner explores this topic.  1999.

To see work specifically on global trade and public health, please go to: www.cpath.org

We appreciate attribution when you use the Center’s documents and materials.  Thank you.

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