Dr. Paul DeChant is a thought leader on reducing physician burnout and improving organizational well-being by fixing dysfunction in the clinical workplace. His contributions to the field include co-authoring the book, Preventing Physician Burnout: Curing the Chaos and Returning Joy to the Practice of Medicine.
He is an experienced physician executive with more than 25 years of clinical and management experience in all aspects of medical group leadership, including quality improvement, strategic planning, financial growth, acquisitions, and Lean transformation.
From 2009 – 2014 he served as CEO of Sutter Gould Medical Foundation (SGMF), a 300-physician medical group. Under his tenure he led a management system and culture transformation based on the theme of “Returning Joy to Patient Care”, which:
- Achieved the highest levels of provider and patient satisfaction in Sutter Health
- Improved physician satisfaction from the 45th to 87th percentile
- Increased profitability while reducing costs
- Achieved recognition for SGMF and its affiliated medical group as the highest rated in overall care among 170 California medical groups two years in a row.
During his tenure with Sutter Health, Paul also served as President of the Palomares Division of Palo Alto Medical Foundation (PAMF) and served 4 years as Chair of ACME, Sutter’s Administrative Council of Medical Executives. In those roles he launched programs to drive quality and service improvements and cost reductions throughout the system. Paul also facilitated the merger of three large medical groups under the PAMF umbrella into an 800-physician group. He has also held leadership roles at Geisinger Health.
Following his operational leadership experience, Paul joined Simpler Consulting, serving as a coach to C-level leaders in health systems across the country. Upon Simpler’s acquisition by IBM Watson Health, his added responsibility as Deputy Chief Health Officer expanded his portfolio to include effectively incorporating artificial intelligence modalities into clinical care workflows.
Dr. DeChant has been an active member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, American College of Healthcare Executives, American Association for Physician Leadership, American Medical Group Association, and the Group Practice Improvement Network.
Paul graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Oregon with a Bachelor of Science degree. He received his medical degree from the Oregon Health and Science University School of Medicine and earned his Master of Business Administration from the University of Colorado-Denver.
Paul lives in San Ramon, CA, with his wife, Bonnie, a nurse and award-winning community theater actress. Together with their two grown children they are all avid skiers and travelers.
“Over the course of his career as a practicing physician and physician executive, Paul has become a leader in shaping the clinical workplace to support both quality services and physicians’ quality of life.”