Naomi Zewde is an assistant professor of health economics at the CUNY Graduate School of Public Health & Health Policy and a fellow at the Roosevelt Institute. Her research centers on economic inequality in wealth and in health insurance and examines the ability of public policies to reduce these inequalities. Her work has been published in scholarly journals including Health Affairs, the American Journal of Public Health, and the Review of Black Political Economy, as well as in popular press outlets including Vox, the Washington Post, and NBC News. Zewde completed a postdoctoral fellowship in social work at Columbia University and is formerly a fellow at the US Department of Health and Human Services. She holds a PhD in health policy from Penn State University and an MPH and BA from Emory.
Ten years after the passing of the Affordable Care Act—the most comprehensive health care reform of the past half-century—most of the previously uninsured continue to lack coverage. Policymakers and members of the public have expressed growing support for expanding the role of public financing of health care. The “public option” and “Medicare for All” have emerged as important contenders for health policy reform. Both policies are rooted in widening access to the lower prices of the public system to make health care more affordable for all.