Peter Ubel MD

Peter Ubel

Core Faculty

Peter Ubel, MD


MD, University of Minnesota Twin Cities

I am a physician and behavioral scientist at Duke University. My research and writing explores the quirks in human nature that influence our lives — the mixture of rational and irrational forces that affect our health, our happiness and the way our society functions. (What fun would it be to tackle just the easy problems?)

I am currently exploring controversial issues about the role of values and preferences in health care decision making, from decisions at the bedside to policy decisions. I use the tools of decision psychology and behavioral economics to explore topics like informed consent, shared decision making and health care spending. My books include Pricing Life (MIT Press 2000) and Free Market Madness (Harvard Business Press, 2009). My newest book, Critical Decisions (HarperCollins), came out in September of 2012, and explores the challenges of shared decision making between doctors and patients.

Fridman I, Fagerlin A, Scherr KA, Scherer LD, Huffstetler H, Ubel PA. Gain-loss framing and patients' decisions: a linguistic examination of information framing in physician-patient conversations. Journal of Behavioral Medicine. 2020 Jul 28;

Fridman I, Ubel PA, Blumenthal-Barby J, England CV, Currier JS, Eyal N, et al. "Cure" Versus "Clinical Remission": The Impact of a Medication Description on the Willingness of People Living with HIV to Take a Medication. Aids Behav. 2020 Jul;24(7):2054–61.

Williamson T, Ryser MD, Ubel PA, Abdelgadir J, Spears CA, Liu B, et al. Withdrawal of Life-Supporting Treatment in Severe Traumatic Brain Injury. Jama Surg. 2020 Jun 17;