Bechara Choucair, MD, is senior vice president and chief health officer for Kaiser Foundation Health Plan, Inc. and Hospitals.
Dr. Choucair oversees the organization’s efforts focused on addressing the social health of its members and the 68 million people who live in the communities it serves. This work includes the creation of the nation’s largest social health network, integrated with Kaiser Permanente’s health care services, to meet the housing, food, and transportation needs of its members.
As chief health officer he is also accountable for the care of over 1 million Kaiser Permanente Medicaid members and those who are dually enrolled in Medicaid and Medicare.
Additionally, Dr. Choucair is responsible for the organization’s environmental stewardship work including the commitment for Kaiser Permanente to become carbon neutral in 2020. He also manages Kaiser Permanente’s community health portfolio, including $3.4 billion dedicated to supporting medical financial assistance and charitable care as well as grants and community health initiatives.
Dr. Choucair reports directly to Kaiser Permanente’s chairman and chief executive officer, and is a member of the National Executive Team.
Dr. Choucair joined Kaiser Permanente in 2016.
Prior to that, Dr. Choucair was at Trinity Health, where he served as senior vice president, safety net and community health. He worked directly with Trinity Health’s regions to improve the health of populations and impact the community-based social determinants of health. He was responsible for the development of new care delivery models and new relationships with payers, public health agencies, and community organizations. Dr. Choucair and his team led the organization’s community benefit portfolio of approximately $1 billion annually. He also launched Trinity Health’s Transforming Communities Initiative to transform the health and well-being of communities across the country.
For 5 years prior to joining Trinity Health, Dr. Choucair was the commissioner of the Chicago Department of Public Health. There, he and his team launched Healthy Chicago, the city’s first comprehensive public health agenda. Since the launch, CDPH has reported historic lows in childhood obesity rates and both teen and adult smoking rates, as well as significant increases in overall life expectancy. Under his leadership, CDPH became the first big-city public health agency to be awarded national accreditation.
Prior to his appointment as CDPH commissioner, Dr. Choucair served as the executive director of Heartland Health Centers in Chicago and as the medical director of Crusader Community Health in Rockford, Illinois.
Dr. Choucair serves on numerous boards, including the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids and the Diversity Leadership Committee of the American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association. He recently joined the board of Futuro Health, a nonprofit organization dedicated to growing the largest network of certified health care workers.
Dr. Choucair has earned a number of local and national awards, including being named one of Chicago’s 40 Under 40 by Crain’s Chicago Business in 2012. In 2019, Dr. Choucair was named by Modern Healthcare as one of the 50 Most Influential Health Executives in the United States, one of the Most Influential People in Healthcare, and one of the Top 25 Innovators in Healthcare.
Dr. Choucair, a family physician by training, holds an MD from the American University of Beirut and a master’s degree in health care management from the University of Texas at Dallas. He completed his family residency at Baylor College of Medicine.