William Branch Jr., MD

Professor of Medicine

Department of Medicine

Office: 1525 Bldg 410

Phone: 404-778-5472

Fax: 404-778-2919

Email: wbranch@emory.edu


Dr. Branch graduated from Vanderbilt University and received his MD Degree from the Medical College of Alabama. He completed his residency at Peter Bent Brigham (now Brigham and Women’s Hospital) after which he served for two years as staff associate at the NIH. He joined the faculty at Harvard Medical School in 1972 and served for 23 years attaining the rank of Associate Professor.

He was the founding director of the Primary Care Residency Program at BWH, and director of the 3rd Year Required Patient/Doctor Course, along with other components of the New Pathway Project. In 1995, Dr. Branch came to Emory School of Medicine as Professor of Medicine; he served as Director of the Division of General Internal Medicine for 17 years.

Dr. Branch’s research interests include: medical education, patient-doctor communication, palliative care, and medical ethics. He serves as a mentor for faculty members at Grady and at the 1525 practice. He participates in guiding the faculty’s research projects.

Recent publications focus on end-of-life issues and spiritually for Grady’s patients with terminal illnesses; teaching of humanism and professionalism as well as faculty development to improve teaching of these values; on a national scale, Dr. Branch has been active in faculty development working with GIMGEL; in medical ethics, he has written on the moral development of medical students, informed consent and the ethics of caring. He co-edited the first Journal of General Internal Medicine issue on Medical Education and a special issue on the Clinician Educator. His textbook “Office Practice of Medicine” is in its fourth edition and has sold thousands of copies.

Dr. Branch practices general internal medicine at the Emory Clinic at 1525 Clifton Road, located on Emory’s main campus. He attends on the wards for 8 weeks each year at Grady Memorial Hospital.

He teaches on the in-patient wards at Grady Memorial Hospital and teaches communication skills and patient-centered interviewing and palliative care to all of Emory’s medical students. He founded the Primary Care Residency in the Department of Medicine at Emory University School of Medicine. He has been the project director for a HRSA-funded faculty development program that has trained 54 faculty members of the Grady Division of General Medicine.

He has been principal investigator of the Arthur Vining Davis Foundations multi-institution project on “Faculty Seminars for Learning to be Humanistic Teachers.” He leads a 1-day faculty development course “Learning to be Better Teachers,” for the entire faculty, especially new faculty members at Emory University School of Medicine. He was the 2nd recipient of the Society of General Internal Medicine’s “National Award for Career Achievements in Medical Education.” He is actively involved and served as Co-Chair for the Committee on Being a Doctor Course for Emory University School of Medicine’s New Curriculum.

Dr. Branch is involved in the leadership and administration of all components of the Division of General Internal Medicine – the Grady Division of General Medicine (45 faculty members), Emory Clinic Primary Care (43 faculty members), the Hospital Medicine Unit (57 faculty members), and the Atlanta VA Primary Care (35 faculty members).

He serves on the Professional Service Committee at Emory University Hospital and the Medical Executive Committee at Grady Memorial Hospital. He is a member of the management committee for Emory Primary Care. Dr. Branch has also been active in University affairs. He was President of the Emory University Senate in 2001, a member of the Ad Hoc University Senate Fringe Benefits Committee. He represents the University Senate to the Emory Alumni Board and is a Faculty Counselor to the Emory University Board of Trustees.