Susan Dentzer is Senior Policy Fellow for the Robert J. Margolis Center for Health Policy at Duke University. Based in Washington, DC, where the center’s research team is located, she focuses on aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic response; health system transformation, such as through telehealth; biopharmaceutical policy; health coverage expansion, and other key health policy issues.
Dentzer is one of the nation's most respected health and health policy thought leaders and a frequent speaker and commentator on television and radio, including PBS and NPR, and an author of commentaries and analyses in print publications such as Modern Healthcare, NEJM (New England Journal of Medicine)-Catalyst, and the Annals of Internal Medicine. She was also the editor and lead author of the book Health Care Without Walls: A Roadmap for Reinventing U.S. Health Care, available on Amazon.com.
From 2016 to 2019, Dentzer was President and Chief Executive Officer of NEHI, the Network for Excellence in Health Innovation, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization then composed of more than 80 stakeholder organizations from across all key sectors of health and health care. From 2013 to 2016, she was senior policy adviser to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the nation’s largest philanthropy focused on health and health care in the United States, and before that, was the editor-in-chief of the policy journal Health Affairs. From 1998 to 2008, she was the on-air Health Correspondent for the PBS NewsHour. Dentzer wrote and hosted the 2015 PBS documentary, Reinventing American Healthcare, focusing on the innovations pioneered by the Geisinger Health System and spread to health systems across the nation.
Dentzer is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine (formerly the Institute of Medicine); an elected member of the Council on Foreign Relations; a fellow of the National Academy of Social Insurance; and a fellow of the Hastings Center, a nonpartisan bioethics research institute. She is the chair of the Board of Directors of Research!America, which advocates on behalf of biomedical and health-related research and innovation, and is also a member of the Board of Directors of the International Rescue Committee, a leading global humanitarian organization. She was formerly a member of the board of directors of the Public Health Institute, a nonprofit organization addressing public health issues and solutions nationwide. She is a member of the Boards of Advisors for RAND Health and for the Philip R. Lee Institute of Health Policy Studies at the University of California-San Francisco. From 2011 to 2017 she was public member of the Board of Directors of the American Board of Medical Specialties, which assists 24 medical specialty boards in the ongoing evaluation and certification of physicians.
Dentzer graduated from Dartmouth, is a trustee emerita of the college, and chaired the Dartmouth Board of Trustees from 2001 to 2004. She serves on the advisory board for the Center for Global Health Equity at Dartmouth, and previously was a member of the Board of Advisors of Dartmouth’s Geisel School of Medicine or more than two decades. Dentzer holds an honorary master’s degree from Dartmouth will receive a master’s degree in health care delivery science from Dartmouth in 2022. She also holds an honorary doctorate in humane letters from Muskingum University. She and her husband have three adult children.