Paul Herstein, MD
Dr. Paul Herstein believes that compassion is significant when treating patients. “The most important tool for a doctor is his ability to listen respectfully and attentively. I try to exercise that ability with every patient I see.”
Dr. Herstein joined Group Health in 1989 and became chief of Radiation Oncology in 1998. Prior to that, he was in private practice. That range of experience has given him an appreciation for the care model of Group Health.
“With integrated care, our personal physicians and specialists work together,” Dr. Herstein says. “The doctors know each other and don’t compete for referrals—we just focus on the best possible outcome for the patient.”
He values treating patients with serious illnesses. Many patients are in a state of distress when they arrive, he says, with either unrealistically rosy or pessimistic expectations. “My job is to gently help people understand what they’re going to go through—not to stray too far from reality while nourishing people’s hope.”
While treatment offers no guarantee, there is reason for patients to feel hopeful. “Hope is our middle name, and it doesn’t require a co-payment,” he says with a smile.
Dr. Herstein received his medical degree from Stanford University, completed an internship in internal medicine at the USC/LA County Medical Center, and a year of anesthesiology residency at UC San Francisco. He was a radiation therapy fellow at Stanford University Hospital. He is board certified in Therapeutic Radiology and in Hospice and Palliative Medicine, reflecting his interest in helping his patients at all stages of life.
“One of the rewards of my work is to be present wherever my patients are in their private experience, to help them go through it with a touch of grace.”
Patient Care Philosophy
“I hope to ease the physical and mental suffering of cancer patients to the greatest extent possible and to offer compassion combined with technical competence.”
- American Board of Radiology, Therapeutic Radiology
- Hospice and Palliative Medicine
- MD, Stanford University School of Medicine, 1974
- Internship, Internal Medicine, USC/LA County Medical Center, 1975
- Internship, Anesthesiology, University of Southern California and Los Angeles County Medical Center, 1975
- Fellowship, Radiation Therapy, Stanford University Hospital, 1979
- Phi Beta Kappa
- Baccalaureate degrees "High Honors"
- American Cancer Society Fellowship 1978-9
- American Society of Therapeutic Radiology
- American Society of Hospice and Palliative Medicine
Contact information: (206) 326-3000