Joel Handler MD

Dr.  Handler has been the national Kaiser Permanente Clinical Hypertension Lead since 2006, and since 2005 has been the southern California Kaiser Permanente region hypertension lead. In these roles he is responsible for the development and periodic review of hypertension treatment guidelines as well as their implementation. He created a referral clinic for resistant hypertension in 1992 and sees KP patients throughout southern California. Dr. Handler is currently certified in internal medicine, critical care medicine, geriatrics, and is an American Society of Hypertension Specialist in Clinical Hypertension. In 2011 he became a Fellow of the American Society of Hypertension. In his daily clinical practice, he sees intensive care unit patients in the mornings, as well as a primary care panel and hypertension referral patients in the afternoons.


     Dr. Handler was a contributor to the 6th Joint National Committee report on high blood pressure, and is an expert panel member of the 8th Joint National Committee on High Blood Pressure. He also participates on the NHLBI Implementation Work Group attached to the adult Cardiovascular Disease Risk Reduction panels. He has been section editor of the Journal of Clinical Hypertension writing a quarterly Case Studies in Hypertension column since 2001, and also composes a quarterly Hypertension Newsletter for KP.


     He is a former president of the Orange County Kaiser Permanente hospital staff and has been chairman of the OC KP Critical Care Committee since 1992. His awards include the American Society of Hypertension Marvin Moser Clinical Hypertension award in 2010, as well as Orange County outstanding internist, and outstanding Physician Contributions awards.


     Dr. Handler received his undergraduate degree at Dickinson College in Carlisle Pennsylvania, a master’s degree from Columbia University, and graduated from University of Pittsburgh medical school in 1976. He completed his residency in internal medicine at the University of California San Diego in 1979. His clinical practice is based in Anaheim, California.