First, Do No Harm: Healthcare Profiteering, Hospital Never Events, and Implications for Racial Equity

HealthBegins December 7 Webinar (Twitter)


Mission-driven healthcare leaders and providers have started to make great strides towards advancing health equity and addressing the social and structural drivers of health equity. But at some institutions, this good work is being overshadowed and even undermined by predatory financial practices that harm patients and drive health and social inequities. More than 100 million U.S. residents have been pushed into debt by medical bills, forcing some to cut back on food, burn up their savings, or even forgo needed medical care—with the burden falling heaviest on Black, Latino, and other racially minoritized communities. These predatory financial practices are a form of healthcare profiteering—which extracts wealth from socially and economically marginalized communities—that undermine efforts to advance health equity and can harm the very patients and communities that many of us are deeply committed to helping.
In this webinar, leaders in health policy and hospital administration will help describe these harmful practices and highlight how mission-driven healthcare leaders and providers can support patients and counteract harmful financial practices, healthcare profiteering, and racial capitalism. They will spotlight examples of how vanguard health systems are working to prevent financial harm to patients as part of their health equity efforts. And they will draw connections between harmful financial practices and persistent inequities—and present ways to help leaders ensure that all hospitals “first, do no harm.”



  • Rishi Manchanda, MD MPH, CEO, HealthBegins (host)
  • Dave Chokshi, MD, MSc, Physician at Bellevue Hospital, Senior Scholar at the CUNY School of Public Health and Health Policy, and former Health Commissioner of New York City
  • Adam Beckman, Harvard MD, MBA Student; Former Special Advisor to the U.S. Surgeon General
  • Berneta Haynes, JD, Staff Attorney, National Consumer Law Center
  • Quynh Chi Nguyen, Associate Director, Community Catalyst


Webinar Objectives:

By the end of the webinar, attendees will be able to:

  • Identify predatory financial practices and the ways these practices harm patients and drive health and social inequities.
  • Describe racial capitalism, its relationship to healthcare profiteering, harmful financial practices, and medical debt.
  • Describe “never events” and other concrete steps to help leaders identify and end abusive practices and harmful medical debt.



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