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Amanda Folsom

Practice Lead, Collaborative Learning

Amanda Folsom is a recognized global leader in health systems, health financing and collaborative learning methods. She has over 20 years of experience working in public sector and non-profit organizations around the globe to improve population health and ensure equitable access for all.

Ms. Folsom is a senior program director at Results for Development (R4D), where she leads the organization’s collaborative learning practice and a portfolio of programs that support policymakers and other leaders to design and implement reforms to increase the equity, quality, efficiency and sustainability of their health systems. She focuses on how to translate knowledge into action, adapt innovations across contexts and improve government stewardship of mixed (public/private) systems, particularly through health financing mechanisms.

Ms. Folsom has worked with R4D since its start-up, providing strategic and technical leadership and management of multiple global, regional, national, and subnational efforts to improve health systems and health financing. Her leadership has supported the design, scale-up, and facilitation of over 20 action-oriented collaborative learning networks, including the Joint Learning Network for Universal Health Coverage (JLN), Linked Immunisation Action Network, a community of practice of the Primary Health Care Performance Initiative, several initiatives of the Health Systems Strengthening Accelerator, and a subnational JLN in Nigeria. She has also led a range of technical assistance programs to strengthen the leadership and technical capacity of institutions and individual leaders around the world, including initiatives to develop a global learning agenda on Primary Care Networks, enhance Ministry of Health leadership for health financing, strengthen the regional ecosystem for health policy and systems research in Asia, enhance health financing knowledge and skills among USAID staff in Africa, and improve health financing in Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, and Nigeria.

Prior to joining R4D in 2009, Ms. Folsom’s work primarily focused on improving health financing and coverage of the poor and vulnerable in the United States. She served as a senior manager at AcademyHealth, where she led a comparative international health system program to generate lessons for U.S. health reform and a quality-based purchasing learning network of state Medicaid programs and large employers. She also worked for the state of Maryland, where she led high-priority policy and data analysis for Medicaid, the major government health financing program for the poor and disabled. She started her career in health systems as a U.S. Peace Corps volunteer in a rural primary care center in Burkina Faso.

Ms. Folsom holds an MPH from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and a BA in English from the University of Virginia. She is a native speaker of English and is advanced in French.

Articles and other publications

  • Folsom, A., Kinter, A., Satzger, E., Mathurin, T., Babalola, L., Lagrada-Rombaua, L., Pulido, L. G. B., Nyaggah, M., & Acevedo, O. A. V. (2023, February 27). Primary Health Care Performance Initiative in collaboration with the Joint Learning Network for Universal Health Coverage. Transforming PHC Delivery and Financing through Primary Care Networks.
  • Chen C., Folsom A., Rao, A., Lagomarsino, G., Nguyen, N., McClellan, M., Hecht, R., DeFerranti, D. “Improving Stewardship of Complex Mixed Health Systems: Learning from Health Care in the United States.” Brookings Institution, March 2010.
  • Folsom, A. “Can Joint Learning Support Country-Level Progress Towards UHC?” JLN Blog, March 2014.
  • Folsom, A. “Essential Ingredients for UHC: Political and Technical Leadership.” Commonwealth Health Partnerships, pp. 115-117, Published for the Commonwealth Secretariat, 2015.
  • Folsom, A., Bloom, D. “Financial Protection and Improved Access to Health Care: Peer-to-Peer Learning Workshop – Finding Solutions to Common Challenges.” USAID Health Finance and Governance Project, March 2016.
  • Folsom, A., Demchak, C., Arnold S. “Rewarding Results Pay-for-Performance: Lessons for Medicare.” Prepared for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Changes in Health Care Financing & Organization, March 2008.
  • Kimball, M., Phily, C., Folsom, A., Lagomarsino, G., Holtz, J. “Leveraging Health Microinsurance to Promote Universal Health Coverage.” Microinsurance Paper No. 23, International Labour Organization, 2013.
  • Makinen, M., Deville, L., Folsom, A. “Assessment of the Private Health Sector in the Republic of Congo.” World Bank Group/International Finance Corporation, 2012.
  • Nachuk, S., Folsom, A., Otoo, N. “How Knowledge Sharing Moves Countries Towards UHC.” PLOS Blogs, December 2014.
  • Nachuk, St., Otoo, N., Folsom, A. et al. “Expanding universal health coverage from the ground up.” Lancet Global Health Blog, December 2016.
  • Nakimovsky, S., Peterson, L., Holtz, J., Connor C., Mehtsun S., Folsom, A., Hatt, L. “Using Evidence to Design Health Benefit Plans for Stronger Health Systems: Lessons from 25 Countries.” USAID Health Finance and Governance Project, June 2015.
  • Rao, A., Folsom, A., Pang, C. “Designing Development Programs to Build Capacity:  Emerging Experience from the Results for Development Institute.” R4D Discussion Paper, 2011.
  • Sealy, S., Folsom, A., Lagomarsino, G., Makinen, M. “Options for Healthcare Financing in Nigeria.” Results for Development Institute, 2012.
  • Schoen, C., Helms, D., Folsom, A. “Harnessing Health Care Markets for the Public Interest: Insights for U.S. Health Reform from the German and Dutch Multipayer Systems.” The Commonwealth Fund, December 2009.

Global & Regional Initiatives

R4D is a globally recognized leader for designing initiatives that connect implementers, experts and funders across countries to build knowledge and get that knowledge into practice.