The global movement for universal health coverage inspires me with its commitment to equity. The way we support this movement also needs to embody the principles of equity — building lateral networks of expertise, engaging in country-led processes with respect and humility, valuing all forms of knowledge and learning, and challenging historical power structures.
Cheryl Cashin, PhD, has more than 30 years of experience in academia, and policy design and implementation, primarily focused on improving knowledge and practice to better leverage health financing for universal health coverage (UHC).
As a managing director at R4D, Dr. Cashin provides strategic and technical leadership for roughly half of the organization’s portfolio of programs and serves on the R4D executive team. Dr. Cashin works with R4D’s practice area leads to create and fund high-impact programs, and oversee their design and implementation. She represents R4D in global forums on health financing and UHC and continues to contribute thought leadership and technical expertise.
Since joining R4D in 2011, Dr. Cashin has been a leader in the global effort to build new models of support for countries to address complex health system issues in the journey toward UHC. She has also supported the development of new health practice areas at R4D that address “next generation” UHC challenges, including integrating disease programs (e.g., malaria, HIV, TB) into mainstream health systems for greater efficiency and effectiveness.
Dr. Cashin is regarded as a master technical facilitator, respected by leaders around the world for her skill in helping to translate evidence and experience from other countries to inform decisions in their own countries. She has pioneered innovative platforms to support collaborative learning, including, among others, the Strategic Purchasing Africa Resource Center and the Learning Network for Countries in Transition, for which R4D serves as the network coordinator.
Before joining R4D, Dr. Cashin served as a health financing policy adviser for a range of countries, including Albania, Georgia, Ghana, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, and Vietnam. She has been engaged as a health financing expert by the World Bank, WHO, OECD and other global technical partners, and she is a regular on the faculty of WHO’s global advanced course on health financing. She has held academic positions at Boston University’s School of Public Health and University of California, Berkeley’s Nicholas C. Petris Center on Health Care Markets and Consumer Welfare. Dr. Cashin is the lead author of the book Paying for Performance in Health Care: Implications for Health System Performance and Accountability and is a co-author of several other books, book chapters, and peer-reviewed journal articles on health financing and UHC.
Dr. Cashin has a PhD in economics from the University of Washington, and a master’s degree from Cornell University. She completed her undergraduate studies at Bucknell University, where she majored in chemistry and discovered her passion for economics and public policy. She lives on Shelter Island, NY with her husband and dog, and is also an advocate for UHC legislation in the state.