Mitesh Patel

Mitesh Patel
  • Associate Professor of Medicine, Perelman School of Medicine
  • Associate Professor of Health Care Management, The Wharton School

Contact Information

Research Interests: behavior change, behavioral economics, connected health, digital health, mobile technology, wearable devices

Links: Personal Website


Mitesh S. Patel, MD, MBA is a Physician Executive and Behavioral Scientist. He is currently Vice President for Clinical Transformation and National Lead for Behavioral Insights at Ascension.  He is also the Ralph Muller Presidential Professor at the Perelman School of Medicine and The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. He is on academic leave from the University of Pennsylvania but continues to teach in the MBA Program at Wharton.

Dr. Patel was previously the Founding Director of the Penn Medicine Nudge Unit, the world’s first behavioral design team embedded within a health system. In this role, he was a leading scholar who catalyzed the use of nudges and nudge units in health systems globally.  His research focused on combining insights from behavioral economics with scalable technology platforms to improve health and health care. He has led more than 25 clinical trials in partnership with health systems, insurers, employers, and community organizations that tested ways to design nudges, incentives, and gamification to change clinician and patient behavior. This work includes digital health interventions using wearable devices and smartphones, and health system interventions using the electronic health record. In this role, he managed a 20+ person team, raised more than $10 million in funding including 6 R01 level grants, and published 100+ articles, many in leading journals such as NEJM, JAMA, Nature, and PNAS.

Dr. Patel has received national recognition from AcademyHealth (Alice Hersh Emerging Leader Award), the Society of General Internal Medicine (Outstanding Junior Investigator of the Year; Quality and Practice Innovation Award), the American College of Physicians (Distinguish Contributions to Behavioral Medicine), the American Society for Clinical Investigation (Young Physician-Scientist Award; ASCI membership), and the Behavioural Insights Team (BX International Practitioner Award).  His work has been featured in numerous media outlets including the New York Times, NBC Today Show, Wall Street Journal, Harvard Business Review, The Economist, Forbes, Time, NPR and CNN.


B.S. (Biochemistry, Economics), University of Michigan, 2004.

M.D. (Medicine), University of Michigan, 2009.

M.B.A. (Health Care Management), The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, 2009.

M.S. (Health Policy Research), Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, 2014.


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Selected Publications

Patel MS, Volpp KG, Asch DA. Nudge units to improve the delivery of health care. New England Journal of Medicine. 2018;378(3):214-21

Patel MS, Kurtzman GW, Kannan S, Small DS, Morris A, Honeywell S, Leri D, Rareshide CLA, Day SC, Mahoney KB, Volpp KG, Asch DA. Effect of an automated patient dashboard using active choice and peer comparison performance feedback to physicians on statin prescribing rates: The PRESCRIBE Cluster Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA Network Open. 2018;1(3):e180818. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2018.0818

Chokshi NP, Adusumalli S, Small DS, Morris A, Feingold J, Ha Y, Lynch MD, Rareshide C, Hilbert V, Patel MS. Loss-Framed Financial Incentives and Personalized Goal Setting to Increase Physical Activity Among Ischemic Heart Disease Patients Using Wearable Devices: The ACTIVE REWARD Randomized Trial. J Am Heart Assoc. 2018; 7(12):e009173.

Greysen SR, Patel MS. Bedrest is toxic: Why mobility matters in the hospital. Annals of Internal Medicine. 2018;169(2):HO2-HO3.

Patel MS, Benjamin EJ, Volpp KG, Fox CS, Small DS, Massaro JM, Lee JJ, Hilbert V, Valentino M, Taylor DH, Manders ES, Mutalik K, Zhu J, Wang W, Murabito JM. Effect of a game-based intervention designed to enhance social incentives to increase physical activity among families: The BE FIT Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA Internal Medicine. 2017;177(11):1586-1593.

Patel MS, Foschini L, Kurtzman GW, Zhu J, Wang W, Rareshide CAL, Zbikowski SM. Using wearable devices and smartphones to track physical activity: Initial activation, sustained use, and step counts across sociodemographic characteristics in a national sample. Annals of Internal Medicine. 2017;167(10):755-757.

Sedrak MS, Myers JS, Small DS, Nachamkin I, Ziemba JB, Murray D, Kurtzman GW, Zhu J, Wang W, Mincarelli D, Danoski D, Wells BP, Berns JS, Brennan PJ, Hanson CW, Dine CJ, Patel MS. Effect of a price transparency intervention in the electronic health record on clinician ordering of inpatient laboratory tests: The PRICE randomized clinical trial. JAMA Internal Medicine. 2017;177(7):939-945.

Wong CA, Miller V, Murphy K, Small D, Ford C, Willi S, Feingold J, Morris A, Ha Y, Zhu J, Wang W, Patel MS. Effect of financial incentives on glucose monitoring adherence and glycemic control among adolescents and young adults with type 1 diabetes: A Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA Pediatrics. 2017;171(12):1176-1183.

Patel MS, Asch DA, Rosin R, Small DS, Bellamy SL, Heuer J, Sproat S, Hyson C, Haff N, Lee SM, Wesby L, Hoffer K, Shuttleworth D, Taylor D, Hilbert V, Zhu J, Yang L, Wang X, Volpp KG. Framing financial incentives to increase physical activity among overweight and obese adults: a randomized, controlled trial.  Ann Intern Med. 2016;164(6):385-394.

Patel MS, Asch DA, Rosin R, Small DS, Bellamy SL, Eberbach K, Walters KJ, Haff N, Lee SM, Wesby L, Hoffer K, Shuttleworth D, Taylor D, Hilbert V, Zhu J, Yang L, Wang X, Volpp KG. Individual versus team-based financial incentives to increase physical activity: a randomized, controlled trial. JGIM. 2016;31(7):746-754.

Patel MS, Volpp KG, Rosin R, Bellamy SL, Small DS, Fletcher MA, Osman-Koss R, Brady JL, Haff N, Lee SM, Wesby L, Hoffer K, Shuttleworth D, Taylor DH, Hilbert V, Zhu J, Yang L, Wang X, Asch DA.  A randomized trial of social comparison feedback and financial incentives to increase physical activity. Am J Health Promot. 2016;30(6):416-424.

Patel MS, Asch DA, Troxel AB, Fletcher MA, Osman-Koss R, Brady JL, Wesby L, Hilbert V, Zhu J, Wang W, Volpp KG. Premium-based financial incentives did not promote workplace weight loss in a 2013-15 study. Health Affairs. 2016; 35(1):71-79.

Patel MS, Patel N, Small DS, Rosin R, Rohrbach JI, Stromberg N, Hanson CW, Asch DA. Change in length of stay and readmissions among hospitalized medical patients after inpatient medicine service adoption of mobile secure text messaging. JGIM. 2016;31(8):863-870.

Patel MS, Day SC, Halpern SD, Hanson CW, Martinez JR, Honeywell S, Volpp KG. Change in generic medication prescription rates after health system-wide redesign of default options within the electronic health record. JAMA Internal Medicine. 2016;176(8):847-848.

Patel MS, Volpp KG, Small DS, Wynn C, Zhu J, Yang L, Honeywell S, Day SC. Using active choice within the electronic health record to increase physician ordering and patient completion of high-value cancer screening tests. Healthcare: The Journal of Delivery Science and Innovation. Published Online May 11,2016. DOI: 10.1016/j.hjdsi.2016.04.005

Patel MS, Asch DA, Volpp KG.  Wearable devices as facilitators, not drivers, of health behavior change. JAMA. 2015;313(5):459-460.

Case MA, Burwick HA, Volpp KG, Patel MS. Accuracy of smartphone applications and wearable devices for tracking physical activity data. JAMA. 2015;313(6):625-626.

Patel MS, Volpp KG, Small DS, Hill AS, Even-Shoshan O, Rosenbaum L, Ross RN, Bellini L, Zhu J, Silber JH.  Association of the 2011 ACGME resident duty hour reforms with mortality and readmissions among hospitalized Medicare patients.  JAMA. 2014;312(22):2364-2373.

Patel MS, Day S, Howell JT, Lautenbach GL, Nierman EH, Volpp KG. Using default options within the electronic health record to increase the prescribing of generic equivalent medications: A quasi experimental study. Ann Intern Med. 2014;161:S44-52.

Patel MS, Reed DA, Loertscher L, McDonald FS, Arora VM. Teaching residents to provide cost-conscious care – A national survey of residency program directors. JAMA Internal Medicine2014;174(3):470

Patel MS, Volpp KG. Leveraging insights from behavioral economics to increase the value of health-care service provision. JGIM. 2012;27:1544-1547.

Patel MS, Davis MM, Lypson ML. The VALUE Framework: Training residents to provide value-based care for their patients. JGIM. 2012;27(9);1210-1214.

Patel MS, Davis MM, Lypson ML. Advancing medical education by teaching health policy. New England Journal of Medicine. 2011;364(8):695-697.


Past Courses

  • HCMG8660 - E-Health:Business Models

    Healthcare is in the early stages of extraordinary change in the business model of care delivery and financing. This transformation will lead to a system based on the proactive management of health, integration of care across the continuum, blurred boundaries between care providers and purchasers and the placement of the consumer at the center. As has been the case in other industries, this new business model will be based on a foundation of diverse, potent, and well implemented information technology. This course will help prepare students to lead a digital health future. Specifically, the course will cover three major areas. (1)The context of health care information technology: the size, composition and evolution of the digital health market; federal government agencies, and related regulations, that shape the market; leadership roles and factors that enable healthcare organizations to effectively implement and leverage information technology. (2)Emerging technologies that will fuel the transformation of healthcare: artificial intelligence and advanced analytics; interoperability; telehealth; consumer-directed digital health; use of behavioral economics to influence patient and provider decisions. (3)Digital health use by specific sectors of the healthcare industry: healthcare providers; health plans; retail-based primary care; life sciences; wellness and chronic disease management. The course will include lectures from industry leaders who will share their ideas and experiences.

  • HCMG8990 - Independent Study

    Arranged with members of the Faculty of the Health Care Systems Department. For further information contact the Department office, Room 204, Colonial Penn Center, 3641 Locust Walk, 898-6861.

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Latest Research

Esther Y. Hsiang, Shivan J. Mehta, Dylan Small, Charles A. L. Rareshide, Christopher K. Snider, Susan C. Day, Mitesh Patel (2019), Association of Primary Care Clinic Appointment Time With Clinician Ordering and Patient Completion of Breast and Colorectal Cancer Screening, JAMA Network Open, 2(5):e193403.
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