Patient Behavior Change: Building Blocks for Success

Duke Clinical Research Institute and Duke Margolis Center for Health Policy, Durham, North Carolina
April 04, 2018
1:00pm-5:00pm ET

If only the patient would take the prescribed medication, eat nutritious foods, lose weight, quit smoking — the list is lengthy. Many health problems, including some chronic diseases, result from intractable human behavior. Rather than blame patient noncompliance, however, health care providers have come to recognize behavior change as a complex challenge that involves not just the patient, but also clinicians and communities.

In this free, live event from NEJM Catalyst, you’ll learn techniques for effective behavior change, what changes are achievable for better health, and which barriers to target. Conversations about behavior change begin with the principle that clinicians should not assume they know how to incorporate patients’ values into medical decisions. Behavioral science has yielded insights into how to increase the likelihood of sustained health — and why some changes are extremely difficult.

Register today and you’ll also get a free copy of Measuring What Matters and Capturing the Patient Voice. Drawing from a roundtable discussion among clinicians, researchers, and a patient advocate, and an NEJM Catalyst survey, this report provides a framework for defining the patient voice and integrating it into care delivery.

During this live web event, you will learn techniques for:

  • Creating better conversations among clinicians and patients through shared decision-making and other communication techniques.
  • Drawing on the power of community-based interventions to expand and maintain behavior change, both at an individual and population level.
  • Understanding why and how different behavioral strategies work, and how to carefully structure interventions.

Join us for insightful presentations, real-world case studies, and an interactive Q&A session with our industry-leading experts.




Welcome and Introduction

Eric D. Peterson MD, MPH, FAHA, FACC, Executive Director, Duke Clinical Research Institute; Professor of Medicine, Cardiology Fred Cobb, MD, Distinguished Professor of Medicine

Namita Seth Mohta, MD, Associate Physician, Brigham and Women’s Hospital; Instructor, Harvard Medical School; Clinical Editor, NEJM Catalyst


Opening Talk

Kevin Volpp, MD, PhD, Founders President’s Distinguished Professor; Director, Center for Health Incentives and Behavioral Economics, Leonard Davis Institute; Vice Chairman Health Policy, Department of Medical Ethics and Health Policy, Perelman School of Medicine and the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania; NEJM Catalyst Theme Leader for Patient Engagement and Event Chair


Session 1: Creating Behavior Change: How Clinicians Should Engage Patients

Effective and meaningful communication between patients and clinicians is deceptively difficult, especially when patients are seen quickly and infrequently in health care settings. But there are key guiding principles for behavior change, such as clinicians not assuming they know how to incorporate patients’ values into medical decisions. This session features experts on shared decision-making, the communication of medical data, and provider-patient communication.


Victor M. Montori, MD, Professor of Medicine, Knowledge and Evaluation Research Unit, Mayo Clinic

Angie Fagerlin, PhD, Chair of Population Health, University of Utah


Kathryn Pollak, PhD, Professor in Population Health Sciences, Duke School of Medicine; Co-Leader, Cancer Control and Population Science, Duke Cancer Institute




Session 2: Scaling Behavior Change: Community-Based Strategies

Research demonstrates the power of community-based interventions to influence behavior change, both at an individual and population level. These strategies span social networks to encourage healthy behavior and policy changes such as sugar taxes. But scaling up healthy behavior through communities is complex. Two expert researchers on obesity will discuss the successful application of community-based strategies, and their limits.


Sara Bleich, PhD, Professor of Public Health Policy, Harvard Chan School of Public Health

Gary Foster, PhD, Chief Science Officer, Weight Watchers International, Inc.


Thomas Lee, MD, MSc, Chief Medical Officer, Press Ganey; Editorial Board, The New England Journal of Medicine; NEJM Catalyst Leadership Board Founder




Session 3: Sustaining Behavior Change: Making It Effortless

Healthy behaviors can be realized through nudges, such as influencing patient or provider choices through incentives or default settings. But getting behavior change to stick is often a challenge; witness the difficulty of lasting weight loss. Some goals are inherently difficult.In this session, a physician/behavioral scientist and an innovation leader will talk about why and how different behavioral strategies work, and in what contexts.


Peter Ubel, MD, Associate Director, Health Sector Management, Madge and Dennis T. McLawhorn University Professor of Business, Public Policy and Medicine, Duke University

Roy Rosin, MBA, Chief Innovation Officer, Penn Medicine


Charlene Wong, MD, MSHP, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Department of Pediatrics, Duke Clinical Research Institute and Duke-Margolis Center for Health Policy, Duke University


Closing Remarks

Thomas Lee, MD, MSc, Chief Medical Officer, Press Ganey; Editorial Board, The New England Journal of Medicine; NEJM Catalyst Leadership Board Founder

Insights Council

Have a voice. Join other health care leaders effecting change, shaping tomorrow.

Apply Now