Tradeoffs Podcast

Telling stories at the intersection of health care, policy, and people


When it comes to fixing America’s costly and complicated health care system, the truth is there are no silver bullets, no cure-alls. There are only Tradeoffs. That’s the name of a new podcast launching in October with support from CHCF. It is executive produced and cohosted by Dan Gorenstein, the former senior health care reporter at Marketplace.

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Season 1 will take listeners to the many places that health policy happens — from inside the halls of Congress to inside the walls of a small clinic in Oakland, California. They’ll meet an economist and a doctor who went out for Korean food and stumbled into a decades-long fight to make insurance work better for people who really need it. And they’ll meet one professor whose discoveries about prejudice in medicine may change how we train the next generation of doctors and nurses.

Tradeoffs combines compelling stories and rigorous research to go beyond the problems and explore what real solutions to some of health care’s toughest challenges might look like. The show’s cohosts, Harvard physician and economist Bapu Jena and Vanderbilt economist Sayeh Nikpay, contribute years of experience evaluating promising policies and programs, allowing us to take an honest look at what works — and what doesn’t.

Episodes will air every other Wednesday. The show is available on Apple, Spotify, and other major podcast platforms. Listen to the trailer below:

Tradeoffs is also supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. It is recorded at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania, with support from the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics and Center for Public Health Initiatives. Advisors on the project include Drs. Dan Polsky, Amitabh Chandra, Heather Klusaritz, Harold Pollack, Jill Horwitz, and Kate Baicker.

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