Lawton R. Burns, PhD, MBA, is Professor of Health Care Systems in the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. He is also Director of Research at the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics. Dr. Burns teaches courses on healthcare strategy, organization and management, managed care and integrated delivery systems. He received his doctorate in Sociology and his MBA in Health Administration from the University of Chicago. Dr. Burns taught previously in the Graduate School of Business at the University of Chicago and the College of Business Administration at the University of Arizona.

Dr. Burns has conducted research on physician-organization arrangements over the past 13 years. He has conducted numerous surveys of physicians at the hospital system, county, state, and national levels, and analyzed the trajectory of physician-hospital relationships over time. In recognition of this research, Dr. Burns was named the Edwin L. Crosby Memorial Fellow by the Hospital Research and Educational Trust in 1992. During the past few years he has helped design national surveys of hospital-physician integration activity for the Prospective Payment Assessment Commission, the American Hospital Association, and the Center for Health Management Research; a national survey of hospital restructuring and reengineering for the Hospital Research & Educational Trust; and a national survey of payer-provider capitated contracting for InterStudy. More recently, Dr. Burns has received grants from the Agency for Health Care Policy & Research (AHCPR) to examine the market forces that favor the development of integrated delivery systems and the internal mechanisms used by such systems to promote physician alignment. He has also received grants to study emerging topics in integration including methods to right-size physician panels, incentivize physicians under capitation, and develop physician leadership. Dr. Burns recently completed case studies of six integrated delivery systems in Illinois for the Illinois Hospital and HealthSystems Association to identify common problems and problem-solving approaches in the integration process.

Dr. Burns is also conducting research on medical groups and networks. He has published several papers on the structure and performance of the physician practice management industry, and is currently examining the market forces that shape the growth of group practices and investor-owned networks.

Most recently, he has received a grant to study supply chain management in the healthcare industry. The study will focus on the strategic alliances and partnerships developing among pharmaceutical firms/distributors, disposable manufacturers, medical device manufacturers, and organized delivery systems.

Dr. Burns teaches one- and two-day management seminars on behalf of the Wharton School, the American Society of Opthalmic Administrators, and other organizations. These seminars are designed to prepare physicians and administrators for managing integrated delivery systems.

Dr. Burns sits on the editorial boards of Health Services Research and Health Care Management Review (where he is Associate Editor). He is a member of the Grant Review Study Section for the Agency for Health Care Policy & Research.

Speaker Topics

  • Strategic Planning

Speaker Type

  • Breakout Presenter
  • Keynote Presenter
  • Presentation Moderator