UnitedHealthcare Establishes New Endowed Professorship at University of Michigan School of Public Health

March 21, 2018
  • Andrew Ryan named first UnitedHealthcare Professor of Health Care Management
  • Endowment to advance research and practice in the areas of health care management and leadership

The University of Michigan School of Public Health announced that Andrew Ryan has been named the first UnitedHealthcare Professor of Health Care Management. UnitedHealthcare established this $2.5 million endowed professorship to support a selected tenured faculty member by funding both salary and a discretionary fund that enables the school to pursue innovative health policy research.

As associate professor of health management and policy, Ryan's research focuses primarily on value-based payment models, or payment structures that motivate health care providers, including doctors, hospitals and health systems, to provide high-quality, affordable care to their patients. His work aims to better understand these programs’ effectiveness, whether there are specific aspects that are responsible for their successes and failures, and determine which types of clinicians or care provider groups are better positioned to thrive through these payment models.

The endowment aligns with UnitedHealthcare’s continued collaboration with care providers in moving to a value-based health care system.

“Professor Ryan is doing some of the most important research today on value-based care,” said Cathleen Connell, interim dean of Michigan Public Health. “His work is helping identify potential changes that could improve outcomes and lower health care costs for millions of Americans. We are grateful to have UnitedHealthcare as a strong partner and for its commitment to advancing health care research at such an important time in the evolution of this industry. Those who invest with us understand the long view and the echo effect of their gift. By providing funding, UnitedHealthcare is not only creating immediate impact – it is helping build the future of public health.”

 “We need the country’s best and brightest minds working on today’s toughest health care challenges and look forward to partnering with Dr. Ryan and others on how to improve the cost and quality of care for everyone,” said Steve Nelson, UnitedHealthcare CEO. “This endowment is an investment in the next generation of this country’s health care leadership.”

Endowed gifts provide a permanent, self-sustaining source of funding. UnitedHealthcare’s donation will be invested, and each year a portion of the return on investment will be used to support the professorship.

Ryan is the director of the Center for Evaluating Health Reform and the co-director of the Center for Health Outcomes and Policy at the University of Michigan. He is also a member of the Institute for Healthcare Policy and Innovation and is associate director of the institute’s Data and Methods Hub.

Ryan holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Economics from Boston University and a Ph.D. in Social Policy from Brandeis University.

Learn more about Ryan.

About University of Michigan School of Public Health

Ranked among the top public health schools in the country, the University of Michigan School of Public Health educates and trains more than 1,000 graduate and undergraduate students each year, with more than 170 faculty and researchers across six academic departments and numerous collaborative centers and institutes. The school’s interdisciplinary strength lays the groundwork for innovative solutions to complex health challenges, including chronic and infectious diseases, obesity and food insecurity, health care quality and costs, climate change and environmental factors, and socioeconomic inequalities and their impact on health. Compassion, innovation, and inclusion drive Michigan Public Health faculty, staff, students, and alumni to pursue positive change and lasting impact on the health of the world. Learn more at

About UnitedHealthcare

UnitedHealthcare is dedicated to helping people live healthier lives and making the health system work better for everyone by simplifying the health care experience, meeting consumer health and wellness needs, and sustaining trusted relationships with care providers. In the United States, UnitedHealthcare offers the full spectrum of health benefit programs for individuals, employers, and Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, and contracts directly with more than 1.2 million physicians and care professionals, and 6,500 hospitals and other care facilities nationwide. The company also provides health benefits and delivers care to people through owned and operated health care facilities in South America. UnitedHealthcare is one of the businesses of UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH), a diversified health care company. For more information, visit UnitedHealthcare at or follow @UHC on Twitter