Our Faculty

Home » Our Faculty » Margaret Elizabeth Kruk

Margaret Elizabeth Kruk

Director, Better Health Systems Initiative
Associate Professor of Health Policy and Management

Dr. Margaret E. Kruk is Associate Professor of Health Policy and Management at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health where she directs the Better Health Systems Initiative, a research and policy program on global health care coverage and quality. Dr. Kruk's research focuses on health care utilization and quality, health financing, and population preferences for health services in low-income countries. Dr. Kruk is interested in the development of novel evaluation methods for assessing the effectiveness of complex interventions and health system reforms. She collaborates with governments and academics in several African countries, most recently Tanzania, Ethiopia, Liberia, Mozambique, and Ghana. She has published over 50 papers in peer-reviewed journals, was a Commissioner on the Lancet Global Health 2035 Commission, and serves on the Institute of Medicine Committee on Health System Strengthening. Prior to joining Columbia, Dr. Kruk was an assistant professor of Health Management and Policy at the University of Michigan School of Public Health and policy advisor for Health at the Millennium Project, an advisory body to the UN Secretary-General on the Millennium Development Goals. She holds an MD degree from McMaster University and an MPH from Harvard University.   View Faculty CV here (PDF).
Education & Training:

    MPH, 2000, Harvard University

    MD, 1994, McMaster University

    External Evaluation of the Saving Mothers, Giving Life Initiative
    We conducted a strategic implementation evaluation of the first phase of a $200 million program financed by a global public-private partnership to reduce maternal mortality through rapid health system reform in Zambia and Uganda.
    Countries: Uganda;Zambia

    Improving Maternal and Newborn Health Using the HIV/AIDS Program Platform in Tanzania+ Study (R01AI093182)
    Working with Tanzanian Ministry of Health and the Ifakara Health Institute, we are conducting a five-year cluster-randomized study to evaluate the effect of extending health system quality improvements used in HIV programs on maternal health and service utilization in Pwani Region, Tanzania.
    Countries: Tanzania

    PISCES: Partnership for Health System Capacity, Evaluation, and Strengthening
    In collaboration with ICAP, the Centers of Disease Control, and local partners, we are studying the interaction between HIV/AIDS programs and health systems in sub-Saharan Africa.
    Countries: Tanzania

Selected Publications:
  • Kruk ME. Universal health coverage: a policy whose time has come. BMJ. October 2013; 347 f6360.
  • Jamison DT, Summers LH, Alleyne G, Arrow K, Berkley S, Binagwaho A, Bustreo F, Evans D, Feachem RGA, Frenk J, Ghosh G, Goldie SJ, Guo Y, Gupta S, Horton R, Kruk ME, Mahmoud A, Mohohlo LK, Ncube M, Pablos-Mendez A, Reddy SK, Saxenian H, Soucat A, Ulltveit-Moe KH, Yamey G. Global health 2035: a world converging within a generation. Lancet. 2013. 382(9908): 1898-955.
  • Kruk ME, Hermosilla S, Larson E, Mbaruku GM. Bypassing primary clinics for childbirth in rural Tanzania: a census of 3,019 deliveries. Bulletin of the World Health Organization. In press.
  • Kruk ME, Jakubowski A, Rabkin M, Elul B, Friedman M, El-Sadr W. PEPFAR programs linked to more deliveries in health facilities by African women who are not infected with HIV. Health Affairs. 2012. 31(7). 1478-88.
  • Rockers PC, Kruk ME, Laugesen M. Perceptions of the health system and public trust in government in low- and middle-income countries: evidence from the World Health Surveys. Journal of Health Politics, Policy, and Law. 2012. 37(3): 405-37.
  • Kruk ME, Prescott MR. The role of health systems and policies in promoting safe delivery in low- and middle-income countries: a multilevel analysis. American Journal of Public Health. 2012. 102(4): 645-50.
  • Kruk ME, Rockers PC, Varpilah ST, Macauley R. Which doctor? Determinants of utilization of formal and informal health care in post-conflict Liberia. Medical Care. 2011.
  • Kruk ME, Porignon D, Rockers P, Van Lerberghe W. The contribution of primary care to health and health systems in low- and middle-income countries: a critical review of country experiments. Social Science and Medicine. 2010. 70(6): 904-11.
  • Kruk ME, Paczkowski M, Mbaruku G, de Pinho H, Galea S. Women's preferences for place of delivery in rural Tanzania. a population-based discrete choice experiment. American Journal of Public Health. 2009. 99(9): 1666-72.
  • Kruk ME, Goldmann E, Galea S. Borrowing and selling to pay for health care in low- and middle-income countries. Health Affairs. 2009. 28(4): 1056-66.

Contact Information


600 W. 168th Street, Room 606

New York, NY 10032

United States