Jessie Gruman is president and founder of the Center for Advancing Health, a nonpartisan Washington-based policy institute funded by foundations and individuals in 1992 to work on patient engagement: people will not benefit from the health care available to them unless they can participate fully and competently in it. Dr. Gruman draws on her own experience of treatment for four cancer diagnoses, surveys, peer-reviewed research and interviews as the basis of her work to describe – and advocate for policies and practices to overcome – the challenges people face in finding good care and getting the most from it.
Dr. Gruman has worked on this same set of concerns in the private sector (AT&T), the public sector (National Cancer Institute) and the voluntary health sector (American Cancer Society). She attended Vassar College (BA) and Columbia University (PhD, Social Psychology) and is a Professorial Lecturer in the School of Public Health and Health Services at The George Washington University. She serves on the board of advisers of the Center for Medical Technology Policy, the Technical Board of the Milbank Memorial Fund and the board of trustees of VillageCare in New York City.
Dr. Gruman was honored by Research!America for her leadership in advocacy for health research. She has received honorary doctorates from Brown University, Carnegie Mellon University, Clark University, Georgetown University, New York University, Northeastern University, Salve Regina University, Syracuse University and Tulane University, and the Presidential Medal of The George Washington University. She is a Fellow of the Society for Behavioral Medicine and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the Council on Foreign Relations.
Dr. Gruman is the author of The Experience of the American Patient: Risk, Trust and Choice (Health Behavior Media, 2009); Behavior Matters (Health Behavior Media, 2008) and AfterShock: What to Do When the Doctor Gives You – or Someone You Love – a Devastating Diagnosis (Walker Publishing, second edition, 2010), as well as scientific papers and opinion essays and articles. She blogs regularly at www.preparedpatientforum.org.