Health Policy in Brief

Promoting evidence-based policies to improve health and wellbeing in America.

Needed: Research to inform laws and policies that elevate community health and equity.

Health Policy Matters

To build a Culture of Health, we must harness the power of evidence-based policy to achieve lasting change. For everyone to have the chance to live as healthy a life as possible, we need public policy that both helps maximize access to quality, affordable healthcare, and create communities that are healthier, more inclusive, and provide everyone the opportunity to thrive.

Informing Health Policy Discussions at the Federal, State, and Local Level

As America’s largest philanthropy dedicated solely to health, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation works with many organizations to analyze key issues affecting health in the United States. In the nation’s capital and at the state and local level, we use our knowledge and the expertise of our partners to provide policymakers and other stakeholders with analysis, evidence, and potential policy approaches that reach across the political spectrum. We also support convenings to promote robust public policy discussions, comment on federal regulations, and the provision of technical assistance to state and local governments putting health policies into place.

Nonpartisan Research and Health Policy Briefs

To help address the needs of busy policymakers, congressional staffers and administration officials, we support translation of nonpartisan research and evidence into health policy briefs that strive to explain key policy issues in a concise, easily digestible format. This approach has been critical to our work in major policy areas such as tobacco control and health coverage, and helping to expand awareness of non-clinical issues such as health equity and the social determinants of health. As we work with others to improve health and wellbeing in America, here are some policy areas we’re working on:

Housing and Health

The conditions of our neighborhoods and quality of our homes play a critical role in shaping our health. Browse RWJF-supported initiatives and resources for communities working to ensure access to safe, affordable housing for all.

Child and Family Wellbeing

Every family deserves the opportunity to raise healthy kids. Explore programs and policies that help achieve healthy, safe, and stable environments for all children and their families.

Healthcare Coverage and Access

RWJF funds research and programs to identify key gaps in health coverage, and help ensure everyone in our nation is able to get the care they need to support lifelong health and wellbeing.

Healthy Food Access

In many communities across America, unhealthy food abounds while affordable, healthy options remain limited. Browse programs and research to assist communities working to increase access to healthy, nutritious food for everyone.

Editor's Pick

Closing Medicaid Coverage Gap Would Help Narrow Racial Disparities

The 2.2 million adults in the Medicaid “coverage gap”—essential workers, parents caring for children, older and younger adults—have incomes below the poverty line, which is too low to qualify for subsidized health insurance coverage, yet they don’t qualify for Medicaid under their states’ rules. Extending health insurance to people in the coverage gap—60 percent of whom are people of color—will improve access to care, provide financial security and improve health outcomes.

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Latest Health Policy Briefs Research and News

other resources

State Network: COVID-19 Resources

State Network is a resource hub that consolidates timely, high-quality resources for busy policymakers and researchers. Check in often for continuously updated resources state policymakers can use to inform their response to the pandemic.


View COVID-19 Resources

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

SNAP provides short-term financial support to individuals and families furthest from economic opportunity who struggle to afford food.

Featured health Policy initiatives

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation supports various non-profit, non-partisan organizations and initiatives.

Contact Us

RWJF Policy unit staff: