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UMass Health Economist Lucy Xiaolu Wang Named to Digital Health Technology Special Interest Group

Lucy Xiaolu Wang
Lucy Xiaolu Wang

Lucy Xiaolu Wang, assistant professor in the resource economics department, has been appointed by the International Health Economics Association (IHEA) as a convenor of a new Special Interest Group focusing on the economics of digital health technology (DHT). It will bring together health economists and experts from economics and related disciplines, such as behavioral economics, cognitive sciences and social sciences, to apply economic theory and tools to advance the field of health economic research by enriching understanding and generating evidence that DHT contributes to more equitable health and social care.

Wang, who proposed the new group and is its only convenor based in the U.S., will lead efforts to support early-career researchers in the field. This will include workshops, training sessions and ensuring that early-career scholars are represented in research activities. She has already begun planning an inaugural webinar focusing on DHT for the coming weeks. Those interested in learning more are encouraged to sign up for the SIG newsletter.

In addition, Wang has been invited to speak at the seventh annual Health Financing Forum (AHFF7) April 15-17 in Washington, D.C, on the sidelines of the 2024 World Bank/International Monetary Fund spring meetings. AHFF7, co-hosted by the World Bank, the U.S. Agency for International Development, and the Global Financing Facility for Women, Children and Adolescents, aims to explore new pathways to prioritize health in government spending, channel increased government funding to vital health programs and boost the impact of development assistance on government investments in health.

Wang will speak at the forum’s Adam Wagstaff Memorial Lecture, honoring former IHEA President Adam Wagstaff, who served as research manager in the World Bank’s Development Research Group and, for two decades, as an associate editor of the Journal of Health Economics. Last year, Wang was awarded the Adam Wagstaff prize for outstanding research on the economics of healthcare financing and delivery in low- and middle-income countries.