Patricia A. Gabow

Patricia A. Gabow


Patricia A. Gabow, MD, was elected to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Board of Trustees in April 2013.

Gabow is a national leader in delivery system innovation and the care of vulnerable populations. A nephrologist by training, she retired in 2012 after 20 years as CEO of Denver Health and Hospital Authority (DHHA), an integrated health care system serving one of the poorest populations in the state of Colorado. Gabow is credited with transforming DHHA from a struggling public hospital system into a national model of integrated, fiscally stable, and high-quality care. One of the hallmarks of Gabow’s leadership was her introduction of Toyota Production System or Lean improvement methods, resulting in the elimination of waste creating financial benefits while significantly enhancing patient care and employee engagement.

Gabow currently serves on several influential health care and health policy commissions, including the federal Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission (MACPAC), the National Academy of Medicine Leadership Consortium for Value & Science-Driven Health Care, the National Governors’ Association Health Advisory Board, and the Aspen Group. Previously she served on the Commonwealth Fund Commission on a High Performing Health System and the Institute of Medicine committee addressing the future viability of safety net providers. She also was chair of the National Association of Public Hospitals and Health Systems.

Earlier in Gabow’s career, she worked as a leading academic practitioner and medical researcher in the area of renal disease, making important contributions to the advancement of knowledge in the treatment of polycystic kidney disease, its progression, and the genetics of the disorder. She continues to serve as a professor of medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine.

Gabow graduated from Seton Hill College in Pennsylvania with a bachelor’s in biology before attending the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. She is the author of more than 130 articles, 36 books and book chapters, and a recent book, The Lean Prescription: Powerful Medicine for Our Ailing Healthcare System. She has received numerous awards, including the American Medical Association Nathan Davis Award for Outstanding Public Servant, the National Healthcare Leadership Award, the David E. Rogers Award from the Association of American Medical Colleges, the Health Quality Leader Award from the National Committee for Quality Assurance, and the Distinguished Graduate Award from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine; she is a member of the Association for Manufacturing Excellence Hall of Fame.