David Sobel, MD

Internal Medicine, San Jose

Health Education and Health Promotion

“Members are the true primary care providers, and our job is to educate, equip and empower them to be active partners with care professionals.”

For 25 years, Dr. Sobel has been creating, developing and disseminating health education programs that support KP members throughout the continuum of care.

Highlights include such innovations as the self-care education programs, including the Healthwise Handbook and the lay-led Healthier Living Program to empower members with chronic conditions; Mind/Body Medicine Programs to help members manage stress-related problems; and Chronic Conditions Management Programs, which include an array of educational and care management programs for patients with asthma, diabetes and other conditions.

However, when TPMG physicians refer their patients to one of these programs, they aren’t necessarily thinking of Dr. Sobel, which is just the way he likes it. “One of the things that gives me the most gratification is when the ownership of the programs by the Medical Group is so great that their origins can no longer be traced to me or the teams that I worked with to develop them,” he comments.

Not only have the numerous programs initiated by Dr. Sobel and nurtured by his leadership spread throughout Northern California, many of them have been adopted by Kaiser Permanente regions nationwide, and four have received the prestigious James A. Vohs Award for Quality.

In addition to his work at the regional offices, Dr. Sobel manages a small adult medicine practice at San Jose, which provides him with the opportunity to see how his innovations in health education integrate with patient care.