Patch Adams is both a medical doctor and a clown...but he is also a social activist who has devoted 30 years to changing America's healthcare system, a system which he describes as expensive and elitist.
The Gesundheit Institute in West Virginia is the non-profit foundation that Patch created to make real the building of a dream. There, amongst beautiful mountains, hardwood forests and waterfalls, Gesundheit advocates are constructing a holistic rural hospital and healthcare community based on the vision of what healthcare should be like. That means patient care where laughter, joy and creativity will be an integral part of the healing process. Healthcare will be provided without cost and doctors will carry no malpractice insurance. Doctors and patients will relate to each other on the basis of mutual trust, and patients will receive plenty of time from their doctors. Allopathic doctors and practitioners of alternative medicine will work side by side.
Patch made the journey from suicidal despair in his youth to making the decision to devote his life to the study of what makes people happy. He travels to other countries as he clowns for sick children or teaches courses in "The Joy of Living". He leads workshops, teaches, speaks, there's little he doesn't do to make a difference.