David Himmelstein, M.D., is a professor in the CUNY School of Public Health at Hunter College. He has served as chief of the division of social and community medicine at Cambridge Hospital. Dr. Himmelstein has authored or coauthored more than 100 journal articles and three books, including widely cited studies of medical bankruptcy and the high administrative costs of the U.S. health care system. His 1984 study of patient dumping, or denial of services for economic reasons, led to the enactment of the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act, the law that ensures access to emergency services regardless of ability to pay.
A cofounder of Physicians for a National Health Program, Dr. Himmelstein received his medical degree from Columbia University and completed internal medicine training at Highland Hospital/University of California San Francisco and a fellowship in general internal medicine at Harvard.