Dr. Mohammad Dar of MassHealth Recognized with ACAP Leadership in Advocacy Award

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  February 8, 2023

FOR MORE INFORMATION:  Jeff Van Ness, (202) 204-7515; jvanness@communityplans.net


WASHINGTON—The Association for Community Affiliated Plans (ACAP) today named Dr. Mohammad Dar, Senior Medical Director of Massachusetts Medicaid (MassHealth) and chair of the National Medicaid Medical Directors Network, the winner of its eleventh annual Leadership in Advocacy award. Dr. Dar was nominated by Boston-based Commonwealth Care Alliance® (CCA).  The Leadership in Advocacy award recognizes individuals whose efforts on behalf of enrollees in Medicaid, Medicare Duals programs, CHIP, Marketplaces, and other safety net programs clearly exceed the norm and whose actions, in partnership with an ACAP plan, have positively affected the lives of the people we serve.

Dr. Dar helped to establish the country’s first statewide in-home vaccination program for Massachusetts residents. He advocated to ensure that the state’s COVID-19 vaccination program expressly account for and address the needs of an often overlooked and hidden population: people who are largely homebound. Through Dr. Dar’s efforts the Massachusetts In-Home Vaccination Program vaccinated more than 10,000 individuals in their homes who otherwise would have been unable to visit a site to get the vaccine. Many of whom faced a disproportionate risk of adverse outcomes from COVID-19 owing to not just their underlying health status, but also their need for regular care from caregivers entering the home.

“The in-home vaccination program can trace its existence directly to the leadership, vision and persistence of Dr. Dar. Without a doubt, his efforts saved countless lives and his commitment to ensuring equitable access to vaccines for those who were most vulnerable is the very definition of leadership in advocacy,” said Chris Palmieri, President and CEO, Commonwealth Care Alliance. “Dr. Dar was an incredible partner on the homebound vaccination program demonstrating time and again his dedication to being a public servant. I can’t think of anyone more deserving of this recognition.”

“The onset of the pandemic was one of those rare moments in time when everything we thought we knew went out the window, and it’s in those moments that true leadership and vision are revealed,” added ACAP CEO Margaret A. Murray. “Dr. Dar’s efforts to assure that vaccine programs left none in our community behind have richly earned him this year’s Leadership in Advocacy award.”

One of the patients Dr. Dar’s program served agreed, writing, “’I am very lucky to have healthcare such as this and would like to express how grateful I am for the work you are doing. [While others don’t] seem to believe people like myself even exist, I am touched and appreciate you and your company. To be seen and looked out for makes a tremendous difference.”

The award was presented at an ACAP meeting in Washington, D.C.

About ACAP:

ACAP represents 78 health plans, which collectively provide health coverage to more than 25 million people. Safety Net Health Plans serve their members through Medicaid, Medicare, the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), the Marketplace and other publicly sponsored health programs. For more information, visit www.communityplans.net.

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