Thomas W. Croghan M.D., Ph.D.

Senior Fellow
Mathematica Policy Research, Inc.
Email: Discipline: Medicine, Health Services Research Expertise: Health Outcomes, Mental Health

Investigator Award
Conceptualizing the Social, Economic, and Cultural Issues Underlying Health Care Outcomes
Award Year: 1999 This project conceptualizes the social, economic, and cultural factors that may influence health outcomes; addresses the impact they have on instruments used to measure outcomes; and assesses whether and how much these issues matter. Drs. Croghan and Pescosolido propose that meaningful health system performance measures may be affected by life circumstances, shaping how and why people enter the medical care system, what they expect and want from treatment, and what is fundamentally important in their daily lives. The project: 1) identifies challenges facing outcomes research and policy; 2) reviews the relevant social and behavioral science literature, including methodological research, to integrate social, economic and cultural insight with outcomes research; 3) develops a theoretical framework based on previous research and analyses; 4) uses existing data to explore the challenges and utility of social and behavioral concepts to address them; and 5) provides recommendations for outcome measures.


Thomas W. Croghan, a nationally recognized expert in the fields of mental health and pharmaceutical policy research, is a senior fellow at Mathematica Policy Research, Inc. His research concentrates on studying access and quality, adequacy of coverage, and outcomes for different groups, in addition to analyzing the capabilities of the health system to provide care for vulnerable populations. Croghan received his M.D. from West Virginia University School of Medicine and comes to Mathematica from the RAND Corporation, where he was a senior natural scientist. He has directed many studies of access, quality, cost, and cost-effectiveness of medical treatments, including projects for the National Institutes of Health, Center for Multicultural Mental Health Research, U.S. Department of the Army, National Defense Research Institute, and Eli Lilly and Company. While at Lilly, he founded the Department of Health Services and Policy Research and served as principal project officer for a National Bureau of Economic Research project that created price indexes for the treatment of depression and other conditions. He also initiated the Schizophrenia Care and Assessment Program, a prospective observational study of 2,400 persons with severe psychosis. He has published widely and serves as a reviewer for many publications, including Health Services Research, Health Affairs, Archives of General Psychiatry, and the American Journal of Managed Care. Board certified in internal medicine and rheumatology, Croghan practices primary care medicine at the Washington Free Clinic. Croghan also serves as Adjunct Professor of Medicine, Georgetown University.