Lown Presents

The Lown Presents series provides a deep dive into topics at the intersection of health policy, health equity, and high-value care. These free live streamed conversations feature experts with a variety of perspectives on health care, including hospital leaders, public health experts, patient advocates, thought leaders, and policymakers. The Lown Institute Hospitals Index provides a backdrop for discussions.

Hospital cost efficiency: Dollars and lives at stake

November 9, 1pm ET

Hospital costs represent one-third of all health care spending, an estimated $1 trillion each year. But more spending doesn’t always mean better care — some hospitals spend much less than others while still achieving excellent patient outcomes.  

What factors drive some hospitals to be much more cost efficient than others? What could we save — in both health and dollars — by improving hospital cost efficiency? And how do we incentivize hospitals to better coordinate care and reduce waste?

We’ll discuss these questions and more with health system leaders, researchers, and the creators of the Lown Hospitals Index.


  • Shannon Brownlee – Special Advisor to the President, The Lown Institute
  • Timothy Crowley – Senior VP for Network Development, Steward Health Care; CEO, Medical Group Innovations
  • Nihar Desai – Associate Professor of Medicine, Yale University School of Medicine
  • Bob Rauner – Chief Medical Officer, OneHealth Nebraska ACO
  • Vikas Saini – President, The Lown Institute

ANNOUNCING: The Most Socially Responsible Hospitals in America

September, 21, 2021 @ 1PM ET

Join us as we reveal the most socially responsible hospitals in America, along with the full results of the 2021 Lown Hospitals Index. There were only 75 hospitals out of more than 3,000 that made it onto our honor roll by earning “A” grades on equity, value, and outcomes.

Register for the launch event on September 21 to learn:

– The names of the winners
– How the Index has changed this year
– The methods behind our new Cost Efficiency metric
– What’s coming up next

You’ll also be able to ask questions directly to the creators of the Lown Hospitals Index.


July 12, 2021 @ 1PM ET

We expect our hospitals to serve everyone in their community who needs care, no matter their insurance status or ability to pay. Nonprofit hospitals are legally obligated to provide financial assistance and other community benefits that improve health. 

However, not all hospitals fulfill their community benefit requirement equally. Some even go so far as to sue thousands of patients for medical bills and put liens on their homes.

Which hospitals are leaders in community health investment and care for low-income patients? On July 12, we’ll reveal America’s top hospitals in our 2021 Community Benefit ranking with health policy experts. 

  • Marty Makary, Professor of Health Policy & Management, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
  • Sara Rosenbaum, Professor of Health Law and Policy, George Washington University
  • Vikas Saini, president, Lown Institute
  • Shannon Brownlee, special advisor to the president, Lown Institute


May 25, 2021 @ 1PM ET

Socially responsible hospitals should care for everyone in their community, especially those bearing the health impacts of structural racism. Which hospitals are doing an exceptional job at serving people of color and and what can we learn from their leadership? Find out when we reveal the most racially inclusive hospitals in America.

  • Aletha Maybank, Chief Health Equity Officer and Vice President of the American Medical Association
  • Harriet Washington, writer and medical ethicist, author of Medical Apartheid: The Dark History of Experimentation from Colonial Times to the Present
  • Richard Besser, president and CEO of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
  • Vikas Saini, president, Lown Institute
  • Shannon Brownlee, special advisor to the president, Lown Institute


May 4, 2021

Hundreds of thousands of unnecessary tests and procedures are performed by hospitals each year, putting patients at risk and wasting resources. Find out which hospitals in the country are best at avoiding low-value services like hysterectomy, stents, and head imaging, when the 2021 Avoiding Overuse results of the Lown Institute Hospitals Index are released!

  • Michael Chernew, Leonard D. Schaeffer Professor of Health Care Policy, Harvard Medical School; director, Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MEDPAC)
  • Rita Redberg, cardiologist and professor, UCSF Medical Center; editor, JAMA Internal Medicine
  • Mark Smith, founding president and former CEO, California Healthcare Foundation
  • Vikas Saini, president, Lown Institute
  • Shannon Brownlee, special advisor to the president, Lown Institute
  • Also featuring leaders of some of the Top Hospitals on avoiding overuse!


January 27, 2021

If the pandemic has taught us anything, it is that the health of each of us matters. But is a competitive hospital market the best way to ensure every person gets the care they need?

  • Paul Levy, Former President and CEO, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
  • Jill Horwitz, Vice Dean for Faculty and Intellectual Life and Professor of Law, UCLA School of Law
  • David Seltz, Executive Director, Massachusetts Health Policy Commission
  • Vikas Saini, President of the Lown Institute
  • Shannon Brownlee, Senior VP of the Lown Institute


October 21, 2020

How does structural racism manifest in the hospital sector and what can we do about it?

  • Vikas Saini, President of the Lown Institute
  • Shannon Brownlee, Senior VP or the Lown Institute
  • Mary T. Bassett, Director of the FXB Center for Health and Human Rights at the Harvard School of Public Health
  • Milton R. Nuñez, CEO of NYC Health + Hospitals/ Lincoln