Health Services Research PhD student named AcademyHealth Diversity Scholar 


Former clinician and hospital chaplain, Arion M. Lillard-Green, seeks to shape health policy for equitable end-of-life care  

Arion Lillard-Green

Arion M. Lillard-Green, a health services research doctoral student at George Mason University, has been named an AcademyHealth Diversity Scholar. The program supports the professional development of underrepresented racial/ethnic minority groups in the field of health services research. Mentoring is a core component of the program. 

“I value the mentorship that the program brings and wanted to experience being among thought leaders. I also look for opportunities to bring awareness to the need for more research in hospice and palliative care sector,” said Lillard-Green.  

With her PhD and through her research, Lillard-Green wants to inform health policy that impacts equitable end-of-life care for persons with life-limiting illnesses and those who care for them. Her research interests are access to care, health disparities and inequities, value-based care and insurance design, quality measurement, and organization performance in hospice and palliative care. 

“Prior to embarking on this researcher journey, I worked in end-of-life care for 17 years as a hospice chaplain. Throughout my career, I have observed stark disparities in access to and quality of palliative care. Experiences as a clinician at the bedside of patients and families have given me insight into gaps in knowledge as well as inspiration to keep hospice and palliative care moving forward as the landscape of healthcare continues to evolve,” said Lillard-Green. 

Through the program, Lillard-Green will also attend AcademyHealth’s Annual Research Meeting and be matched with an expert with similar research interests for professional development.  

Lillard-Green received her Master of Health Administration from Mason in 2020. She also holds a Master of Theological Studies from Christian Theological Seminary and a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from Indiana University (Bloomington). Prior to her health services research program, she worked with an interdisciplinary team as a hospice chaplain to serve patients at the end-of-life while supporting their families and caregivers in urban and rural areas. She has collaborated with national and local organizations dedicated to overcoming industry challenges in hospice and palliative care.