Lara Shore-Sheppard to Present Final Talk in Annual Faculty Lecture Series

Media contact: Noelle Lemoine, communications assistant; tele: (413) 597-4277; email: Noelle.Lemoine@williams.edu

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass., March 8, 2013—The final lecture of the annual Faculty Lecture Series at Williams College will be presented on Thursday, March 14, by Lara Shore-Sheppard, professor of economics and chair of the political economy program. The talk, titled “Insuring the Uninsured Before and After the Affordable Care Act,” will take place at 4:15 p.m. in Wege Auditorium, Thompson Chemistry. The event is free and open to the public. A reception will follow in Schow atrium.

In March 2010 President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act (ACA) into law. Starting in October 2013, individuals and small businesses will be able to begin enrolling in health insurance plans sold through newly established Exchanges, and on Jan. 1, 2014, coverage by those plans and by Medicaid, the public health insurance program for the poor, will become effective. In this lecture, Shore-Sheppard will consider how the elements of the ACA will function to extend health insurance to the uninsured. Her primary focus is the Medicaid expansion, a crucial but controversial portion of the ACA that is intended to provide coverage to the lowest-income population. Shore-Sheppard will also discuss why fluctuations in family income pose a particular challenge to ensuring coverage under the ACA.

Much of Shore-Sheppard’s work has focused on assessing the impact of publicly provided health insurance for low-income children, focusing particularly on the interaction between public insurance and private insurance, cash welfare programs, and employment. Her research on social policy has been published in The Journal of Health Economics, Journal of Public Economics, and The Review of Economics and Statistics, and has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, the Department of Agriculture, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

Shore-Sheppard has taught at Williams since 2000. In addition to teaching courses in econometric methods in the political economy program and the Center for Development Economics, she teaches courses in the economics of health and health care, labor economics, antipoverty policy, and public health.  She received her B.A. from Amherst College in 1991 and her Ph.D. from Princeton University in 1996.

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