The Healthy Nudge
June 2022
Welcome to The Healthy Nudge. Each month, we'll get you up to speed on the latest developments in policy-relevant health behavioral economics research at CHIBE.

A Bloomberg article featuring CHIBE-affiliated faculty member George Loewenstein, PhD

“While an intense anxiety about robust price increases—something the US hasn’t seen in almost four decades—is a big part of kitchen table conversations across the country right now, it’s not just inflation that’s unsettling people. A jarring string of events is raising fears that the underpinnings of modern American life are crumbling. 'At this point, people have been primed with stimuli practically to the breaking point,' says George Loewenstein. 'When people are in a state of fear, they become more afraid of everything. So people are right to be afraid about the economy, but their fears are amplified by all the other background risks they are, and have been, exposed to.'” Read more here.

A JAMA Network Open paper led by CHIBE-affiliated faculty member Shivan Mehta, MD, MBA, MSHP

"Can text messaging with behavioral insights increase participation in COVID-19 vaccine outreach? Text messaging offers a low-cost alternative to outbound telephone calls, but additional efforts are needed to increase vaccine uptake." Read the paper here, or find the Penn Medicine press release here.

A 3M Inside Angle podcast episode featuring CHIBE Associate Director Amol Navathe, MD, PhD

“I think to truly make gains on equity, we can't make it an afterthought of how we design policy," Dr. Navathe said. "In other words, what I think the typical approach has been, is to design a model, change a policy, and then to evaluate and monitor and say, ‘Well, how is this model affecting populations that are more underserved? What's happening to inequities and gaps and disparities?’ And if we do that, we're always going to be chasing our tail and unlikely to really proactively make progress against these social challenges that we have.” Listen here.

A JAMA Network Open Invited Commentary by Joshua Petimar, ScD, CHIBE-affiliated faculty member Laura Gibson, PhD, and CHIBE Associate Director Christina Roberto, PhD

"Sugar-sweetened beverages (SSB) are a key contributor to a decades-long surge in diet-related chronic disease and demand policy action. Evidence from this review makes it clear that SSB taxes are an effective tool to reduce SSB purchases and, therefore, have the potential to improve diet and health. However, chronic diseases are complex problems driven by multiple factors. It is difficult, though not impossible, for any one policy to substantially move the needle on population-level health outcomes, but improving dietary choices is a worthy goal in and of itself. Jurisdictions that consider implementing these taxes should continue to design them in consultation with lower-income and marginalized communities." Read the invited commentary here.

A JAMA Internal Medicine paper led by CHIBE Internal Advisory Board Member David Asch, MD, MBA

"Among patients discharged after a hospitalization for heart failure, does remote monitoring and rewarding their weight and diuretic adherence reduce subsequent chances of death or rehospitalization? In this randomized clinical trial of 552 adults followed up for 12 months, hospital readmissions or death were not significantly different whether patients received remote monitoring and financial incentives or usual care." Read the paper here.
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Hybrid Research Seminar
Robin Yabroff, PhD, MBA
Epidemiologist and Scientific Vice President, Health Services Research at the American Cancer Society
“Medical Financial Hardship Among Cancer Survivors in the US”
June 23, 2022, from 12 - 1 PM EST
In person at 1104 Blockley Hall (423 Guardian Drive, Philadelphia, PA, 19104) or via Zoom at

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The Center for Health Incentives and Behavioral Economics (CHIBE) at the University of Pennsylvania conducts behavioral economics research aimed at reducing the disease burden from major public health problems. Originally founded within the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics, our mission is to inform health policy, improve health care delivery, and increase healthy behavior.