Neil Ratner MD

An Extraordinary Journey

 Interview by Michael Oshust ~  September 5, 2019


Rick Derringer (left) and Neil Ratner (right)

Who is Neil Ratner, MD?

Neil Ratner said he always dreamed of two different career paths. Either a rock and roll drummer or a physician. As a teenager, Neil was an aspiring rock n’ roll drummer but ended up on the other side of the music business working as a tour manager, assistant manager and producer for groups like Edgar Winter, Emerson Lake, and Palmer, Pink Floyd, and T-Rex, among others. After a number of successful years working in the music biz, Neil had an epiphany and decided to pursue his other childhood dream of becoming a doctor.

He finished college, learned Spanish, spent four years at a medical school in Mexico, completed two years of surgical training and an anesthesia residency, and helped create the new specialty of office-based anesthesia in Manhattan.

In doing so, Dr. Ratner became an expert in the use of the new drug, Propofol, a drug that would play a significant role in Neil's future in regards to his most famous patient... Michael Jackson. 


Although Dr. Ratner encountered many celebrities in his anesthesia practice, one would change his life... Michael Jackson. Eight years after establishing his anesthesia practice, Michael Jackson walked into an office in which Neil was the Director of Anesthesia. Neil became a trusted friend and personal physician of Michael's from 1994 to 2002, periodically going on tour and spending time with Michael at Neverland. 

Dr. Ratner has been with his soulmate, Leann, for over 43 years and has been beside him through the journeys. 

After visiting Africa, Dr. Ratner created community-based self-sustaining bakeries in Africa to service areas in need.

Dr. Ratner decided to chronicle his journeys from meeting Nelson Mandela, helping his trusted friend Michael Jackson, and giving back to the people in need in Africa. He talks about meeting Lisa Marie Presley, Nelson Mandela, Edgar Winter and more. The result is his book Rock Doc which captivates the reader's

interest from the first few pages.

Photo Source: Neil Ratner


Neil (left) with Edgar Winter

Because your heart was to pursue your other childhood dream idea of becoming an MD was that turning point for you?  

You started a career as a physician later in life, that must have been a challenge.

A turning point, from the hospital to the private office.   


How was it seeing Michael Jackson?

The path you chose being a physician.

Michael Jackson's HIStory tour which covered Europe, Africa, Asia, Oceania, and North America

was the third and final worldwide tour, was he going to retire?

Remembering how remarkable Michael was.

Neil Ratner Links


Special thank you to Neil Ratner & Lappen Entertainment Ca


Decision to become a physician - Neil Ratner, MD
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Starting later in life - Neil Ratner, MD
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Hospital to the private office - Neil Ratner, MD
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Seeing Michael for the first time - Neil Ratner, MD
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Path chosen - Neil Ratner, MD
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After the HIStory tour - Neil Ratner, MD
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Michael was remarkable - Neil Ratner, MD
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Neil Ratner's Podcasts

Neil Ratner's Facebook Page

Neil Ratner's Rock Doc book

Also available from Amazon here

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