Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Partners with ATI Advisory to Address Equity in Access to Long-Term Services and Supports

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AUTHOR – ATI Advisory


Washington, D.C.—ATI Advisory (ATI) is supporting the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) to better understand, across a wide range of backgrounds, the challenges that individuals with functional and cognitive needs face in accessing long-term services and supports (LTSS). This project will elevate the voices of individuals with lived experience and their caregivers and illuminate systemic barriers that limit or create inequitable access to LTSS. The project will be supported by quantitative and qualitative analysis detailing differences in LTSS needs and access by factors such as race, ethnicity, gender, age, and sexual identity.

ATI Advisory is a healthcare research and advisory services firm dedicated to system reform that improves health outcomes and makes care easier for everyone. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation uses grantmaking, policy change, and impact investing to address barriers to health and wellbeing.

There is a huge unmet need for LTSS, and many individuals experience barriers, lacking access entirely or lacking culturally appropriate access as a result of broad structural challenges including those related to race and ethnicity and socioeconomic disadvantage,” said Kathy Hempstead, Senior Policy Advisor at RWJF. “This project will bring greater awareness to help advance policy solutions, including public-facing education that will improve understanding of the challenges that different populations face in accessing supports for functional and cognitive needs.”

“Addressing inequity in something as personal as LTSS requires carefully gathered and appropriately understood insights. Input must reflect a wide range of backgrounds and lived experiences,” said Kimberly Smathers, Managing Director for ATI Advisory and Project Director. “Our approach will capture individual experiences in a thoughtful way and pair these with targeted quantitative data analysis to surface opportunities for change that resonate with policymakers.”

This collaboration includes several layers of research. ATI will quantify need and access across Medicare-only, Medicaid-only, and dual-eligible beneficiaries using several data sources. ATI will conduct interviews and focus groups with beneficiaries from diverse backgrounds, caregivers, and experts in the field to contextualize data findings. The project will culminate with education and recommendations for federal and state policymakers, community leaders, and healthcare media and influencers with findings and potential policy solutions.

As the nation’s largest health philanthropy, RWJF is focused on ensuring that everyone in America has a fair and just opportunity for health and well-being. ATI Advisory is a proven leader in bringing informed, innovative solutions to siloed, broken systems across acute care, post-acute care, and LTSS.

Hempstead added: “Everyone should have the services and supports they need throughout their lifetime, but unfortunately that is far from our current reality. We must better understand disparities in long-term services and supports and work toward sustainable and person-centered solutions for individuals and their caregivers.”


For more than 45 years the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has worked to improve health and health care. We are working alongside others to build a national Culture of Health that provides everyone in America a fair and just opportunity for health and well-being. For more information, visit


ATI Advisory is a healthcare research and advisory services firm dedicated to system reform that improves health outcomes and makes care easier for everyone. ATI guides public and private leaders in developing scalable solutions. Its nationally recognized experts apply the highest standards in research and advisory services along with deep expertise to generate new ideas, solve hard problems, and reduce uncertainty in a rapidly changing healthcare landscape. For more information, visit

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