Douglas K. Owens

All CHP/PCOR People Institute Faculty and Researchers

Douglas K. Owens, MD, MS

  • Senior Fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies
  • Henry J. Kaiser, Jr. Professor
  • Professor of Medicine
  • Professor, by courtesy, of Management Science and Engineering
  • Director of the Center for Health Policy and the Center for Primary Care and Outcomes Research
CHP/PCOR Encina Commons, Room 201 615 Crothers Way Stanford, CA 94305-6019 Administrative Assistant: Heidi Zhang (650) 723-9631
(650) 723-0933 (voice)
(650) 723-1919 (fax)


Douglas K. Owens is the Henry J. Kaiser, Jr. Professor, and Director of the Center for Health Policy (CHP) in the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies (FSI) and of the Center for Primary Care and Outcomes Research (PCOR) in the Department of Medicine and School of Medicine at Stanford.  He is a general internist and Associate Director of the Center for Innovation to Implementation, a health services research center of excellence, at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System.  Owens is a Professor of Medicine and, by courtesy, Professor of Health Research and Policy, and Professor of Management Science and Engineering, at Stanford University; he is also a Senior Fellow at FSI.

Owens' research focuses on technology assessment, cost-effectiveness analysis, evidence synthesis, and methods for clinical decision making and guideline development. He is studying the cost-effectiveness of preventive and therapeutic interventions for HIV/AIDS in several countries; diagnostic and therapeutic interventions for cardiovascular disease; the cost effectiveness of current and emerging therapies for hepatitis C virus infection; approaches to quality improvement; and he has developed methods for developing clinical practice guidelines tailored to specific patient populations. Owens chaired the Clinical Guidelines Committee of the American College of Physicians for four years. The guideline committee develops clinical guidelines that are used widely and are published regularly in the Annals of Internal Medicine.  He is a member of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, which develops national guidelines on preventive care, including guidelines for screening for breast, colorectal, prostate, and lung cancer.

Owens also directed the Stanford-UCSF Evidence-based Practice Center and the Program on Clinical Decision Making and Guideline Development at PCOR.  He directs three training programs in health services research: the Fellowship Program in Health Research and Policy at Stanford, the VA Physician Fellowship in Health Services Research, and the VA Postdoctoral Informatics Fellowship Program.

Owens received a BS and an MS from Stanford University, and an MD from the University of California-San Francisco. He completed a residency in internal medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and a fellowship in health research and policy at Stanford.  Owens is a past-President of the Society for Medical Decision Making.  He received the VA Undersecretary’s Award for Outstanding Achievement in Health Services Research, and the Eisenberg Award for Leadership in Medical Decision Making from the Society for Medical Decision Making.  He was elected to the American Society for Clinical Investigation (ASCI) and the Association of American Physicians (AAP).

In The News

An illustration of opioid addiction.

Stanford Team Reveals Cost-Effective and Life-Saving Treatment for Nation's Opioid Disorder Epidemic

A Stanford team of decision scientists with colleagues at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System developed a mathematical model to assess the cost-effectiveness of various interventions to treat opioid use disorder. They looked at the cost-effectiveness from two perspectives: the health-care sector and the criminal justice system.
Encina Hall and its front lawn

Adding cardiac resynchronization therapy could increase quality of life

A new study by Stanford researchers indicates adding cardiac resynchronization therapy to an implanted cardio defibrillator (CRT-D) for patients with mild heart failure may increase the quality of life and do so cost-effectively.
HIV crop

Treating men at high risk for HIV makes economic sense, says Stanford study

Eran Bendavid says the results of his work are a departure from a previous study. Earlier research found giving preventative drugs to large groups of gay men at high risk for HIV was not cost-effective when compared with other commonly accepted programs.