Health Educators who work in HMOs face most of the problems and predicaments of their colleagues in medical care as well as some additional challenges. In keeping with the national interest in role definitions for health educators in various settings, this paper examines the role, functions, and skills of health educators in medical care, with special attention and case examples in HMOs. Several key issues, in role definition, are identified: 1) the lack of standards for training health educators in medical care; 2) the lack of agreement on health education roles and functions; and 3) the lack of reality-based training for health educators in medical care settings. The one hopeful note for the future is that current efforts at role definition are by and large efforts of the health education profession to set its own standards. Countering that note are directions that the profession is moving that jeopardize its effectiveness and future in medical care. This paper recommends that health educators from academia and practice work collaboratively on role definition, as well as standards for training.