Davis Lecture: The Financialization of Health Politics

The Center for Health Administration at the Crown Family School invite you to

Michael M. Davis Lecture Series

“The Financialization of Health Politics”


In the wake of a pandemic that has killed over one million Americans–with the highest death rates among minorities and lower-income people–the time has come for an honest discussion about the health care system. This book talk will review a sweeping history of the American health care state that reveals the public has been intentionally misled about the true role of government. The US government has always invested federal, state and local dollars in public health protection and prevention. Despite this public funding, however, Americans typically believe the current system is predominantly comprised of private actors with little government interference. America has never had a system that resembles a competitive, free-market model. Given how much the government already invests in the health care system, means how these funds are distributed and administered are fundamental political questions for the American public, not questions that should be decided by the private sector. If we want to fix care in America, we need to reimagine the way it is organized, prioritized, funded, and, perhaps most importantly, discussed.

Learning Objectives

  • To learn about the growth in public funding of the US health care system from 1860 to present.
  • To have it explained as to why the role of government has been hidden to appease private actors.
  • To learn of the importance of private actors controlling the narrative and the difficulty to reclaim that narrative.


Presented by Colleen M. Grogan, Ph.D., Deborah R. and Edgar D. Jannotta Professor Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy and Practice, The University of Chicago

Moderated by Joseph D. Bruch, Assistant Professor, Department of Public Health Sciences


Tuesday, October 31, 2023

12:30PM-1:45PM (CT)

Edith Abbott Hall, Library

969 East 60th Street, Chicago, IL 60637


The event is free open to the public. Registration required.

Hybrid Presentation: In-person and virtual via Zoom

1.5 CEUs available for $30, select Add-On.

Lunch provided for in-person attendees, registration required.


About CEUs

  • Eligibility for CEU’s requires indication at registration, event attendance, and completion of the post-event survey.
  • Post event, pending attendance verification, a PDF copy of the CEU certificate will be sent to the email provided during registration.
  • 1.5-hour CEU’s are available for $30. The Professional Development Program (PDP) is a licensed State of Illinois provider of Continuing Education for social workers (LSW/LCSW), clinical psychologists, marriage and family therapists, and professional counselors (LPC/LCPC). License #s 159.000140, 168.000115, and 268.000004.


About the Presenter

Colleen M. Grogan is the Deborah R. and Edgar D. Jannotta University Professor at the University of Chicago in the Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy and Practice. She is also the Deputy Dean for Curriculum for the Crown Family School. Her research interests include health policy and health politics, the American welfare state, and participatory decision-making processes. She has written extensively on the history and current politics of the U.S. Medicaid program and has focused most recently on understanding how state Medicaid programs address substance use disorder, especially in response to the opioid epidemic. She is also completing a book manuscript titled The Political Transformation of America’s Health Care State, which details and examines the historical development of political strategies and motivations behind hiding the role of government in the U.S. health care system. She is co-associate editor for the health policy section of the American Journal of Public Health and the former editor of the Journal of Health Politics, Policy and Law.

If you have any questions about access or to request a reasonable accommodation that will facilitate your full participation in this event such as ASL interpreting, captioned videos, Braille or electronic text, food options for individuals with dietary restrictions, etc. please contact the event organizer.