Magda Schaler-Haynes, JD, MPH

  • Professor of Health Policy and Management and Population and Family Health at CUMC
Profile Headshot


Magda Schaler-Haynes is Professor of Health Policy and Management at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health. Her scholarship and teaching focus on intersections of constitutional law and health policy including public health law, reproductive healthcare, abortion law, and pandemic response.

Professor Schaler-Haynes' career spans over two decades in health law and policy, including multiple roles in public service at state and federal levels. From 2017-2022, she served in the administration of New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy, most recently as Senior Advisor at the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General. Based in the Division of Consumer Affairs which houses the majority of healthcare professional licensing boards, Schaler-Haynes was a member of the COVID-19 emergency response team and led initiatives focused on health equity; nondiscrimination; scopes of practice; provider supply and emergency licensure; maternal mortality and morbidity; reproductive healthcare including abortion; consumer protection; telehealth; and end of life care. She previously served as the Director of Policy and Strategic Planning at the New Jersey Department of Health, where she oversaw the Department's policy portfolio, strategic planning, the Office of Health Information Technology and the Office of Vital Statistics and Records. Until 2015, she served on the staff of U.S. Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) as Special Advisor for healthcare and women's issues. From 2008-2011, she served as Senior Health Policy Advisor at the New York State Insurance Department where she managed multiple health reform initiatives.

As an independent consultant, Schaler-Haynes provided strategic services to clients on high stakes policy issues ranging from price transparency and benefit design to amicus briefing management for the Center for Reproductive Rights in Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt, the successful 2016 U.S. Supreme Court challenge to Texas' abortion clinic shut down law. As adjunct faculty at Columbia from 2008-2022, she taught courses in public health law; reproductive rights; and abortion policy. Schaler-Haynes was a visiting scholar at the Australian Health Policy Institute at the University of Sydney from 2005-2006. She began her career as an associate in the Health Care Department at the Proskauer firm in New York from 2001-2005.

Academic Appointments

  • Professor of Health Policy and Management and Population and Family Health at CUMC

Credentials & Experience

Education & Training

  • BA, 1996 Brandeis University
  • MPH, 1998 Columbia University
  • JD, 2001 Columbia Law School

Committees, Societies, Councils

Member, Federation of State Medical Boards Workgroup on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in Medical Regulation

Member, Curriculum Committee on Health Law, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, 2010-2011

Member, Honor Code Revision Committee, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, 2008-2009

Honors & Awards

John M. Olin Law and Economics Junior Fellow, Columbia Law School,1999-2000

Humane Studies Fellow, 1998-1999


Research Interests

  • Healthcare Policy
  • Maternal and Reproductive Health

Selected Publications

Nguyen AM and Schaler-Haynes M, “Can Interstate Licensure Compacts Enhance the Health Care Workforce?"  Milbank Memorial Fund Blog. April 11, 2023.

Nguyen AM, Schaler-Haynes M, Chou J, Vowels M, Llaneza D, Kozlov E. Increasing Access to a Diverse Mental Health Workforce Through Emergency Reciprocity Licensure. Journal of Medical Regulation. March 2023. 109(1): 5-21.

Nguyen AM, Schaler-Haynes M, Chou J, Wetzel M, Yedidia M, Koller M, Cantor JC. Impact of the New Jersey COVID-19 Temporary Emergency Reciprocity Licensure Program on Healthcare Workforce Supply. Health Affairs. August 2022. 41(8):1125-1132. https://doi:10.1377/hlthaff.2022.00249 [doi]

Magda Schaler-Haynes, Book Review, (reviewing Carol Sanger, About Abortion: Terminating Pregnancy in Twenty-First-Century America) 43 J HEALTH POLIT POLICY LAW 6 (2018).

Schaler-Haynes M. All Payer Claims Databases: Issues and Opportunities for Health Care Cost Transparency in New Jersey. Rutgers Center for State Health Policy Policy Brief (2013).

Schaler-Haynes M, Chesnokova A, Cox C, Feinstein M, Sussex A, Harris J. Abortion Coverage and Health Reform: Restrictions and Options for Exchange-Based Insurance Markets. 15 University of Pennsylvania Journal of Law and Social Change 324 (2012).

Oechsner TJ & Schaler-Haynes M. Keeping it Simple: Health Plan Benefit Standardization and Regulatory Choice Under the Affordable Care Act. 74 Albany Law Review 241 (2011).

Global Health Activities

Visiting Scholar, Australian Health Policy Institute, University of Sydney, March 2006-March 2007

Urban Health Activities

Member, Health Law Committee, Association of the Bar of the City of New York, 2006-2009

Member Ex-Officio, Health Care Cost Containment Subcommittee, Public Health Committee, New York State Bar Association, 2008-2009