The realization, and the continuing pursuit, of Patchs dream is the Gesundheit Institute, a picturesque clinic where each patient meets not only a doctor, but a friend.
"Medical care has become more corporate and automated," says Robin Williams. "People have less contact with doctors, nurses and orderlies. My character refuses to surrender his belief in the importance of a gentle, caring bedside manner. Hes the kind of doctor who by sheer presence makes you feel better."
Adds director Shadyac, "Today we know about endorphins and the importance of the mind in the healing process. That knowledge didnt exist back in the 60s and 70s when Patch was forming his philosophy. It was a radical concept then. Hes really a pioneer in the discovery of the medicinal values of laughter and compassion."