Laura J. Faherty

Laura J. Faherty
Physician Policy Researcher; Professor of Policy Analysis, Pardee RAND Graduate School
Boston Office


M.D., Emory University School of Medicine; M.P.H. in global epidemiology, Emory University Rollins School of Public Health; M.S.H.P. in health policy research, University of Pennsylvania; B.A. in history of science, Princeton University

Media Resources

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Laura Faherty (she/her) is a physician policy researcher at RAND, professor of policy analysis at the Pardee RAND Graduate School, and attending physician at Maine Medical Center. Prior to joining RAND, she was a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar at the University of Pennsylvania.

A board-certified general pediatrician with a public health and health services research background, Dr. Faherty’s research focuses on maternal-child health and pandemic preparedness and response, both in U.S. and non-U.S. settings. Her current work addresses COVID-19 testing in K–12 schools; equitable COVID-19 vaccine delivery; behavioral health in the perinatal period, including opioid use in pregnancy and perinatal depression; and behavioral health surveillance in the disaster context. She recently supported the development of the 2020 Vaccines National Strategic Plan and evaluated the impact of The Rockefeller Foundation's Equity-First COVID-19 Vaccination Initiative. She completed her residency and chief residency in pediatrics at Boston Medical Center and Boston Children's Hospital. Dr. Faherty received her M.D. and M.P.H. in global epidemiology from Emory University, her M.S. in health policy research from the University of Pennsylvania, and her B.A. in history of science from Princeton University. 

Concurrent Non-RAND Positions

Attending Physician, Maine Medical Center; Associate Director, Barbara Bush Children's Hospital Scholars Academy

Recent Projects

  • An Exploratory Analysis of the Association of State Policies with Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome
  • COVID-19 Testing in K-12 Schools
  • Evaluation of the Equity-First Vaccination Initiative
  • Monitoring and Surveillance of Behavioral Health During Public Health Emergencies
  • Building Capacity Among Early Career Public Health Professionals to Increase Trust in Public Health Emergency Preparedness and Response in their Online Social Networks

Selected Publications

Stephen W. Patrick, Laura J. Faherty, Andrew Dick, Theresa A. Scott, Judith Dudley, Bradley D. Stein., "Association Among County-Level Economic Factors, Clinician Supply, Metropolitan or Rural Location, and Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome," Journal of the American Medical Association, 321(4), 2019

Laura J. Faherty, Heather L Schwartz, Faruque Ahmed, Yenlik Zheteyeva; Lori Uscher-Pines, "School and preparedness officials' perspectives on social distancing practices to reduce influenza transmission during a pandemic: Considerations to guide future work," Preventive Medicine Reports, 2019 (forthcoming)

Faherty, LJ; Hantsoo, L; Appleby, D; Sammel, M; Bennett, I; Wiebe, DJ., "Movement Patterns in Women at Risk for Perinatal Depression: Use of a Mood-Monitoring Mobile Application in Pregnancy. ," Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association., 24(4), 2017

Faherty, LJ, Rasmussen, SA, and Lurie, N, "A Call for Science Preparedness for Pregnant Women in Public Health Emergencies," American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, 2016

Faherty, LJ, Rasmussen, SA, and Lurie, N, "Planning for Research on Children During Public Health Emergencies," Pediatrics, 137(2), 2016

Faherty, L.J., Matone, M., Passarella, M., Lorch S., "Mental Health of Mothers of Infants with Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome and Prenatal Opioid Exposure ," Maternal and Child Health Journal, 2018 (forthcoming)

Laura J. Faherty, Benjamin French, Alexander Fiks, "Gender of the Clinician, Child, and Guardian and the Association with Receipt of Routine Adolescent Vaccines," Journal of Adolescent Health, 59(1), 2016

Faherty LJ, Kranz AM, Russell-Fritch J, Patrick SW, Cantor J, Stein BD., "Association of Punitive and Reporting State Policies Related to Substance Use in Pregnancy With Rates of Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome," JAMA Network Open, 2(11), 2019

Honors & Awards

  • Bob Brook Scholar Award (2017), The RAND Corporation
  • Medal Award - Bronze (2019), The RAND Corporation
  • Medal Award - Silver (2022), The RAND Corporation



Recent Media Appearances

Interviews: KJZZ - (NPR) Phoenix, AZ; Reuters Online