Overuse conference to inspire change toward the right care for patients

Road to RightCare to be held March 8-11 in San Diego

October 2, 2014 (Boston, MA)—Lown Institute will hold its third annual conference, titled Road to RightCare: Engage, Organize, Transform, on March 8-11, 2015 at the Omni San Diego Hotel. The conference will bring together physicians, nurses, community leaders, patient advocates, students and others who are prepared to address the widespread overuse of unnecessary care and the underuse of needed care. In addition to offering health care professionals concrete tools for changing their own practices, this meeting will inspire all to advocate for transformative change in the healthcare system.


Each year in the United States, millions of patients are deprived of necessary care, while others are harmed by unnecessary, ineffective or unwanted medical treatments. Overuse of medical services, including unneeded hospitalizations and testing, account for an estimated $200 to $800 billion a year.


The RightCare Alliance, a network of clinicians, patients and community leaders, initiated last year by the Institute, will further define its structure and activities during the conference. The RCA is devoted to shifting the culture of medicine from ‘more is better’ to the ‘right care’ for patients by building a grassroots movement and deploying action-oriented programs. A special call to action for attendees will be part of the work of the conference.


The RCA will recognize 10 recipients of the RightCare Alliance Young Innovator Grants, supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF). These young innovators—students, trainees and faculty—will be selected from a large pool of applicants seeking grants for medical education projects that challenge the drivers of overuse.


“The vast problem of overuse has exploded into national prominence, and we are forging a collaborative effort from healthcare professionals, patients and community leaders,” says Vikas Saini, MD, president of Lown Institute. “Our event provides an opportunity for attendees to realize a vision of medicine that is compassionate, focused on the patients, and ensures that they receive the care they need and want.”


Through generous support from the RWJF and other organizations, this year’s conference is, for the first time, open invitation. Keynote speakers include:


  • Steven Nissen, MD, chair of the Department of Cardiovascular Medicine at Cleveland Clinic
  • America Bracho, MD, MPH, executive director of Latino Health Access
  • Mitchell H. Katz, MD, director of Los Angeles County Department of Health Services
  • Harlan M. Krumholz, MD, Harold H. Hines, Jr. professor of Medicine, director of the Yale-New Haven Hospital Center for Outcomes Research and Evaluation


On the second day, attendees will be able to participate in skills-building workshops on such diverse topics as behavioral health, orthopedics, cardiology, emergency medicine, shared decision-making and palliative care. Panel discussions on the first and third days will cover the power of social movements in healthcare, how to advance the right care in hospitals or organizations, a view of primary care of the future and better models for caring for patients with chronic illnesses.


“The time for action is now,” says Shannon Brownlee, MS, senior vice president of Lown Institute and author of Overtreated: Why Too Much Medicine is Making Us Sicker and Poorer, named the best economics book of the year (2007) in the New York Times. “Too many patients are subjected to the risks of medical tests and treatments with little or no chance of being helped. Too many doctors and nurses are feeling disconnected from medicine’s core values of compassion and service, and that’s bad for patients.”


Limited scholarship assistance is available for the conference to students and community leaders. CME and CEU credits will be offered for some sessions.


Special early bird registration fees apply through October. To learn more about the conference and to register, please visit


About the Lown Institute

The Lown Institute, a nonprofit, action-driven think tank in Boston, is transforming the culture of medicine by preserving the valued relationship between the doctor and patient, advocating for patients to receive only the medical care they need and want, and removing financial incentives from clinical decision-making. The Institute was founded by renowned cardiologist and Nobel Peace Prize recipient, Bernard Lown, MD, and supports his vision for compassionate, effective health care delivery. Visit and follow on Twitter at @LownInstitute.

About the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

For more than 40 years, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has worked to improve the health and health care of all Americans. We are striving to build a national Culture of Health that will enable all Americans to live longer, healthier lives now and for generations to come. For more information, visit Follow the Foundation on Twitter at or on Facebook at

Margie Coloian
Lown Institute
Director of Communications