Paul Hochfeld has been an emergency physician in Oregon for the last three decades. He has served as president of Mary’s Peak Emergency Physicians, and as EMS coordinator for the Corvallis Fire Department, and was recently chairman of the peer review committee for Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center.
Four years ago, Hochfeld felt compelled to explore the question, “Why is our health-care system so sick?” This investigation led to his producing a video, Health, Money, and Fear. In September 2009, he was one of the lead doctors on the Mad As Hell Doctors Road Tour, which traveled across the country, educating people about health-care reform. Hochfeld advocates public financing of health care, also known as the “single payer solution,” and has expressed his views to Ed Schultz and Keith Olbermann on national television.
Hochfeld recognizes that our health-care system reflects not just the values of our community, but also the tensions that lie at the heart of society: individual desires versus the needs of the community; unlimited demands for limited resources; and the deity of technology that nurtures our unrealistic expectations, especially toward the inevitable end of life. Our health-care system is profoundly broken, costing too much and yielding poor results. Unfortunately, fixing health care will first require fixing our political process, which is broken for the same reason. They are both mostly concerned about money.
Hochfeld received a combined bachelor’s/master’s degree in electrical engineering from MIT, and later graduated from the University of California San Diego School of Medicine.