We were the first to apply behavioral economics to healthcare

And we're out to apply lessons learnt to improve patient engagement

Faculty and researchers from across the University of Pennsylvania and other renowned institutions have conducted and continue to research direct patient engagement and behavioral economics based interventions aimed at reducing the disease burden from major U.S. public health problems. Way to Health was born from their frustration around the lack of a platform to quickly develop, test and scale out their ideas.

Our Mission

Improving healthcare outcomes needs purpose built research tools

Technology assisted motivation & human behavior change is the key to advancing health outcomes. The healthcare system needs a purpose built tool that allows for scale and to engage with people in their existing journeys. Way to Health has demonstrated its value as a research platform in this domain.  The platform, its developers, and its uses have credibility among the research community.

Successes derived from research should be easily translated into practice

Even as more research and successes are published, its application in the real world still lags as systems and plans don’t quite know how to apply it in their context. THe goal is to reduce the time it takes for interventional research to be applied in specific patient contexts as short as possible. We want to take a leadership position in tactical research and deployment of evidence based research.

EHRs should be an integral part of any patient or provider engagement strategy

Good technology must join not just patient and physician journeys, but also their existing technology, such as legacy EHR systems i.e. be available in the context of their life and their “workflow”. Tighter integration with EHRs is necessary. Health systems have spent millions deploying and customizing EHRs. They are looking for ways to maximize the ROI. This will be a platform available to all irrespective of the EHR of choice.

The evolution of Way to Health


  • December 2019

    150+ studies and 60,000+ patients

    Improvements in the platform now allow accelerated deployments at an average rate of 2-3 studies per week.

  • July 2019

    125 studies and accelerating

    Our user base continues to diversity with multiple external organizations across the country starting up projects independently from Penn.

  • June 2018

    100 study milestone

    Way To Health continues to go from strength to strength. It currently has managed a total of a 101 studies with many more in the pipeline.

  • December 2017

    85 research studies and clinical pilots. 28+ peer reviewed publications.

    Successes continue to add up as the platform is used now not only for research but also for clinical pilots and larger scale clinical deployments.

  • July 2016

    55 studies and 15+ peer reviewed publications.

    Successes continue to pile up and the platform continues to evolve as more and more capabilties are needed - gamification, device integrations, text messaging and many more.

  • July 2015

    25+ study milestone

    Way To Health continues to gain wider adoption with zero marketing. This is major milestone as it represents studies across multiple domains - CHF, Diabetes, Wellness, Adolescents and Children and many more

  • Jan 2014

    Default platform for BE studies at UPenn and in other institutions

    Behavioral economics based research continues to show promise and this purpose built tool increasingly becomes the go-to choice for researchers. Kevin and David institute grants to give young researchers a way to quickly try out innovative ideas.

  • July 2013

    We grow the team

    In the "invest when necessary" mould, Way to Health begins to grow its internal engineering, product and implementation teams.

  • Jan 2012

    Way to Health supports 25 studies

    Way To Health continues to evolve as more and more researchers within Penn use the platform to set up and deploy small and large scale studies.

  • Jan 2011

    First Way to Health study is launched

    Seminal study was focused on smoking cessation and using financial incentives to quit smoking. National study conducted among CVS employees using financial incentives to quit smoking. Largest study conducted to date of financial incentives and smoking cessation in an employer setting, led to benefit design changes across CVS.

  • July 2010

    Way to Health is born

    David Asch and Kevin Volpp come up with the idea of building a software platform to simplify and automate all the steps needed to set up and manage interventional clinical trials with a specific focus on behavioral economics. NIH provides seed funding to make this idea a reality.