happening peoplearchive

Dr. Pamela Wible

"The average physician has empathy burnout after 10 patients," says Dr. Pamela Wible, citing a recent study. "But a family doctor sees 28 patients per day on average." Wible moved to Eugene in 1996, after med school in Galveston and a residency in Tucson. She worked as a family doctor in several offices in Eugene and Seattle. "I never kept a job more than two years," she says. "I was frustrated by assembly-line medicine." So, early in 2005, with the aid of a blurb in EW, Wible held town-hall meetings on how communities could design their own health care. "It was my experiment in democracy," she says. "I got 100 pages of testimony. It became my business plan." Wible now works three half-days a week in a tiny one-person office, yet because of low overhead costs, she earns as much as she did working full-time at a large clinic. Patients get an hour of undivided attention and pay according to their ability. Wible uses her extra time to write and speak to medical groups. "I hear white male doctors call out, 'Hallelujah!'" she says. "It goes over like a gospel revival." Learn more at idealmedicalpractice.org.

happening people

photograph and story by Paul Neevel

Eugene Weekly / 14 August 2008

hp archive